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Old 01-11-2012, 02:43 AM
 
Location: Oklahoma
6 posts, read 12,318 times
Reputation: 16

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Hello, so I'm sure you have all read a thousand "what city is best?" questions from people moving to Maryland, and just so you're pre-warned, this is one more. My name is Ella, and my husband and I are planning a move to Maryland this summer. Let me give you a little background and information so maybe someone here can point me in the right direction. My husband and I are both from Florida, originally, and we were stationed out in Oklahoma due to the military. We are no longer in service, and we are looking to go some where we WANT to live, instead of somewhere we were brought to live.

We both agree that with our 10 year old daughter we do not want to raise her in Florida, for many reasons, which I would rather not get into at this time. We have agreed as a family that Maryland is the right state for us, but we are quite unsure of which area(s) we would enjoy more.

We homeschool our daughter, so the public school system is not a concern for us. My husband telecommutes for work, and I am a personal trainer, so being close to a big city for work is not an issue either. Being from Florida we are partial to coastal areas, and we have been looking into Anne Arundel County, and Talbot County areas, though we are open to suggestions. We have been looking at Ferndale (is that even a place, some websites say it's not) and I would love to get opinions. We are not planning on buying a home, at least not right away, so we would be more interested in a rental property vs. home ownership.

When we moved to Oklahoma, we did buy a home, and being new to the area, we did not really know what to look for. We bought a brand new home, in what seemed like a really nice neighborhood. Turns out gangland is 2 streets away and every night we hear police helicopters and sirens all around our area. My husband and I have lived in low income areas before, but nothing like what we have experienced here! We now have much more income and we want to live some where we can feel safe letting our daughter ride her bike around the neighborhood, or even go visit a friend down the street without one of us having to walk her there and back!

I have been spending time searching through census data, and cost comparison charts and all kinds of dry information and I just can't seem to get a "feel" for any area, so I was hoping maybe some locals would be willing to help me out a little. My daughter loves horseback riding, but we would not want to buy a horse right off the bat. We also enjoy skiing and snow boarding, but we have decided that the northern portions of Maryland may be a little more than what we would want to handle on a day-to-day basis. We like the idea of being able to get to restaurants, and shops and what not, within an hour or so drive.

We are very much Home Bodies, and family oriented, but we would like to have social outlets available also. I think what we are really looking for is a nice community where we can make friends, but not be able to spit on our neighbors window from our window, if you know what I mean. We don't live the Luxurious life style, and we're content with a simple life, filled with love, friendship, family, and community, and that is what we are hoping to find. I guess I've rambled on more than I expected, so if anyone could offer advice, or assistance in finding a community that might fit our desires, I would be greatly appreciative!! Thank you!!

~Ella
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:33 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,250 posts, read 19,768,765 times
Reputation: 5077
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ella_Bella View Post
my husband and I are planning a move to Maryland this summer.
~Ella
Have you researched the property and income taxes in Maryland? Maryland has relatively high taxes in addition to expensive housing, and it's not an obvious choice given your values. For example, Delaware has lower taxes, and North Carolina and Virginia probably have more home-schooling families. In addition, you should check out the state laws regarding home-schooling. Also, perhaps there are other discussion forums for Maryland families involved in homeschooling, which would give you better ideas about friendly communities. Here's a helpful list of resources: http://www.home-school.com/groups/MD.html

At any rate, if you are interested in AA or Talbot County, here's a discussion by a family with similar concerns:
Help me get a handle on Anne Arundel County

Last edited by goldenage1; 01-11-2012 at 08:12 AM..
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,250 posts, read 19,768,765 times
Reputation: 5077
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ella_Bella View Post
We have been looking at Ferndale (is that even a place, some websites say it's not) and I would love to get opinions.
~Ella
Ferndale has the mailing address of Glen Burnie. If you can live anywhere, I would not choose it. It near the end of the runway at BWI airport.

Easton is a very nice town on the Eastern Shore. I think it is much preferrable town, and there seems to be an active home-school network. Plus, on the Eastern Shore you are more likely to find the acreage you need for a horse.

Last edited by goldenage1; 01-11-2012 at 09:29 AM..
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:44 AM
 
Location: Montgomery County, MD
3,240 posts, read 3,284,128 times
Reputation: 3010
I really don't think Maryland is the best place for your family. Taxes, prices and regulations are insane. I think Virginia would be a better option for your situation, they have better places for your lifestyle. Northern Virginia has a much better job situation and can be affordable if you're living in the exurban areas and they have a lot of those nice semi rural types of communities you describe. You should repeat this question on the Northern Virginia forum, they would probably better be able to advise you.
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Old 01-11-2012, 12:08 PM
 
581 posts, read 989,370 times
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Ferndale is ok. Its a working class/blue collar area of Glen Burnie. Close to Baltimore. You will airplanes from BWI though. There are areas close by that are probably a better fit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhenomenalAJ View Post
I really don't think Maryland is the best place for your family. Taxes, prices and regulations are insane. I think Virginia would be a better option for your situation, they have better places for your lifestyle. Northern Virginia has a much better job situation and can be affordable if you're living in the exurban areas and they have a lot of those nice semi rural types of communities you describe. You should repeat this question on the Northern Virginia forum, they would probably better be able to advise you.
Im curious what regulations you think would adversely affect them in MD? Taxes will be similar and prices in Northern Virginia will likely be higher than the areas of MD they are looking at. My friends in Northern Va, pay roughly the same taxes as me, maybe slightly less, but not even close to enough for it to be a factor.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:00 PM
 
396 posts, read 961,532 times
Reputation: 331
I am curious, given your values, what aspects of Maryland do you find attractive?
I share some of your same interests, but we are only living in Maryland because of the need to find jobs. Would never have moved here otherwise due to the high cost of living, higher crime rate, and emphasis on material wealth (at least in the DC burbs).

If you do not have to live in MD to work, I would be looking at more rural areas of coastal Virginia or North Carolina (not so much urban Northern VA). Just driving from Virginia to Maryland on Route 301 makes me sad, because you start seeing "discount liquor" and gambling/betting signs and shops when you cross the river into MD--in contrast to VA. Another option would be areas of VA bordering Route 301 and Route 17, if you like the coastal plain.

If you have not already done so, I would come to the area you are considering for a long vacation to get a feel for it and decide whether Maryland would be a place you would like to live before starting to make any definitive plans to live here (or any other place, for that matter, since you have a lot of choice in the matter!)
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:06 PM
 
Location: Texas or Cascais, Portugal
3,414 posts, read 3,179,719 times
Reputation: 8269
One area you might want to consider if you enjoy coastal living is Selbyville, Delaware. It is not far from Maryland but considerably cheaper. Close to the Atlantic Beaches (30 minutes away) and is a close knit community. Small town but with most amentities you need. Check it out, if commuting isn't an issue, it's a great little town.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Hiding from Antifa?
6,394 posts, read 4,172,123 times
Reputation: 5695
If the Maryland Gov has his way, MD taxes WILL become more of a major concern vs Virginia. They just raised all the tolls and plan to raise them even more in the next year or so. Of course they asked for a much higher raise than they got. If they had really wanted that higher amount, they would have started out higher. Now they are asking for a 15 cents a gallon gas tax increase. Obviously they will be happy with 7-8 cents a gallon. That's the way things get done here. It's a very liberal state compared to VA. The Government is heavily Dem, and the voters just keep putting them back in office. They ask for an arm and a leg when it comes to raising taxes, and the stupid electorate is happy when they only take their legs.

If we could move right now we would be looking at DE or VA. If it were just my job, and we were not upside down on the house we wouldn't hesitate. All that could change overnight if my wife's health gets bad enough to get on disability.
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Old 01-11-2012, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
244 posts, read 493,412 times
Reputation: 66
Ella-Bella: from what you said, Western Maryland (not Northern Maryland though it is easy to make that mistake. Here we have the Eastern Shore aka Lower and Upper Eastern Shore, Western Shore, Mid Maryland, Western Maryland) may be the place for you. There are numerous horse back riding farms out here (my teaching assistant just bought her daughter a horse and they board it where she takes lessons--I live in Middletown in Frederick County), you can drive to numerous ski areas and make a day trip out of it.
You said you now have much more income, which is nice. Maryland isn't cheap, but Virginia can be more expensive depending on where you live-- whether you are in MD or VA, the closer to Washington DC the more expensive and more city like it can be or feel.
There is a large home school group around Frederick County, which doesn't mean our schools are awful. On the contrary they are award winning and very challenging, but people choose to homeschool for various reasons. I see a lot of activities planned for them in the Recreation Class Manual the County sends out and I see groups of them doing field trips together sometimes.

If you can take the time to come out and visit you may be able to narrow down where you want to live. Since you both have flexible jobs, and can live just about anywhere, you may have to pick the ONE thing that you have to be near in order to narrow down your area. We are moving to Mass. due to my husband's job transfer in Boston and when we began looking around that city, and finally contacted a relator she said, "You are looking in a radius that is like Baltimore, to the Chesapeake Bay, to DC and back again. You have to figure out what the most important thing is." For us, it was the commute on the train into the city, so we found 4 towns, with good schools, that are around 20-30 min on the train and that is where we are concentrating our search. Since you mentioned skiing, I would live in Frederick County or further west to get the best slopes in the area. There is Ski Liberty and Roundtop near Gettysburg, PA but they are small but great for beginners.
Hope this helps!
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:42 PM
 
3,499 posts, read 4,954,121 times
Reputation: 3488
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ella_Bella View Post
being close to a big city for work is not an issue either. around our area. We like the idea of being able to get to restaurants, and shops and what not, within an hour or so drive.

a nice community where we can make friends, but not be able to spit on our neighbors window from our window, if you know what I mean. ~Ella
Well, Ferndale certainly far exceeds your qualifications for shopping with an hour or so drive. Considering that the two largest shopping malls in the state (Annapolis Mall and Arundel Mills Mall) are a few minutes away. But Ferndale/Glen Burnie is an older, and dense working-class suburb with mostly native residents. There is no need at all for you to live that close to a large city, unless necessary for your job. I agree with recommending the communities the other posters have mentioned, Frederick, Selbyville, Easton. You would have more room and newer housing there. What about being near any extended family, is that a consideration for you?
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