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Old 06-24-2016, 11:25 AM
 
264 posts, read 285,627 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaebeam View Post
I'm closing July 20th. Be my neighbor, buy this house:

1020 Ivy Avenue E, St. Paul, MN 55106 | MLS 4717908 | Listing Information

I'm actually being serious, this is the home I'd go for if the place we put our offer on hadn't worked out. I'm through the appraisal and inspection phases, so I'm willing to share

You are walking distance to Phalen rec center, public golf course, Lake Phalen. You are across the street from a bike path that will connect you to the gateway trail. this will take you downtown or to Stillwater.

I lived in Minneapolis for 13 years, and I own a condo in Lowry Hill, next to the Walker Art Museum. So the walkable "center" isn't going to be Uptown worthy, but you are close to Arcade and Wheelock for walking to a few restaurants.

I bike downtown for work, and I also take the bus. I hate driving in stop and go traffic. The Phalen blvd bike path is amazing for getting to the East Side.

If this area has *any* appeal, PM me, I have a few other addresses I can send your way.
I recently had to drive through "East St. Paul" (area north of 94, east of 35E) several times, and briefly considered investing in a rental property there. Superficially, this appears a very unpleasant and unsafe area, with undesirables priced out of the gentrifying areas of St Paul pushed there. It might be changing for the better, or not. Granted, Phalen is a bit east of where I was driving.

My relatives lived in that general area, about 1/2 mile east of Phalen though, so I know the area fairly well.
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Old 06-24-2016, 02:03 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis, MN
53 posts, read 89,575 times
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If your job ends up in St Paul you may want to consider Longfellow or Lake Nokomis areas in Minneapolis (some parts may start to challenge your budget). to note: you may have some difficulty finding properties in South Minneapolis under 300 that don't require a decent amount of updating or don't instantly have insane competition otherwise. Two years ago, it would have been better but there's low inventory and many buyers in these areas.
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Old 06-24-2016, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis
256 posts, read 259,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billhelm View Post
If your job ends up in St Paul you may want to consider Longfellow or Lake Nokomis areas in Minneapolis (some parts may start to challenge your budget). to note: you may have some difficulty finding properties in South Minneapolis under 300 that don't require a decent amount of updating or don't instantly have insane competition otherwise. Two years ago, it would have been better but there's low inventory and many buyers in these areas.
Good points. We've walked around Longfellow before, and it does seem like the kind of neighborhood we'd be looking for. But I confess I hadn't really thought about the necessity of updates for some of the properties, anyway. I guess that's probably one of the reasons some people prefer newer construction out in the suburbs.
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Old 06-24-2016, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis
256 posts, read 259,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Citykid3785 View Post
For under $300K in highland park, you'll have better luck staying SW of Montreal and St. Paul aves. Some of the homes on pinehurst get to be $700K!!!
Yeah, I know there are some pretty damn nice houses over there; they look like castles from the bus I'd obviously be looking for the ones without the turrets and drawbridges

Quote:
Originally Posted by Citykid3785
I have some friends in West St Paul. This does meet your criteria, however the walkable core is a bit dated and lifeless, although the homes have character and are cheap. Roberts street has amenities, but is not walkable as they've had several pedestrian deaths from road crossings in recent years.
Thanks for the info. The pedestrian deaths thing is scary, for obvious reasons. I've had a few near-misses living off Hennepin because of jerks flooring it to make it through lights on their way to I-94. As for West St. Paul, I've never been there; I've only explored it a bit with Zillow and GoogleMaps. The neighborhood looks about "right", but yeah, I hadn't really noticed a "downtown" area of note. I am really intrigued by the area though, because if I get the St. Paul job, I'd be within 15 minutes of the place by bike.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Citykid3785
Speaking for the south metro suburbs (ones closest to Prior Lake/Highland), very few have a walkable core, and the ones that do (Rosemount,Lakeville) are too far out to meet your commute guidelines. Rosemount has terrible highway access, but a cute downtown and is affordable.

My best suggestion in the South Metro given your criteria would be Richfield, near the new Lakewinds co-op. This area is up and coming, has a mildly urban feel, and has lots of walkable amenities with affordable housing. There are plenty of trails near Woodlake.
Thanks for this. Hadn't really looked at Rosemount at all, nor Lakeville really. If I got the Prior Lake job, these could both be doable. Bit of a hike for St. Paul, though.
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Old 06-24-2016, 08:39 PM
 
1,349 posts, read 1,553,051 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pvoyd View Post
Urban and sub/exurban living (and Prior Lake is exurban) are VERY different. Having done both in the Twin Cities, and with you currently living in downtown Minneapolis, I would consider short-term renting a suburban house for a week or two. Maybe you will like it, perhaps you will hate it, but you will get some idea what you are getting into if you buy in the suburbs.

That said, the requirement of a walkable core restricts one to the cities proper - the only walkable area outside the cities proper I am aware of is downtown Hopkins, and it is, IMHO, pretty lame as it is.
Stillwater, Wayzata, Excelsior, Chaska etc etc but those are all fairly far out.
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Old 06-26-2016, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis
256 posts, read 259,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr roboto View Post
Stillwater, Wayzata, Excelsior, Chaska etc etc but those are all fairly far out.
Stillwater would be within my preferred commuting distance to St. Paul, and Chaska for Prior Lake; it would all depend where I end up getting my next gig, I suppose. But both of those seem like pretty nice places I'll have to look more into...
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Old 06-26-2016, 11:45 AM
 
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North St. Paul, White Bear Lake, Willernie/Mahtomedi, Shakopee. They all have old commercial districts/downtowns. Maybe Lilydale counts, but it's pretty small.
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Old 06-27-2016, 05:58 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis
256 posts, read 259,708 times
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Maybe this question is a bit harder to quantify, but... what are some of these places like? Do any of them have a specific feel or "vibe" or whatever? For instance, in Minneapolis where I live now, there are tons of twenty-somethings walking around, hanging out in the parks and going to the various restaurants and stuff, lots of people out jogging all the time, etc. So it feels "alive" and "vibrant", I guess (though saying that feels pretty cheesy). Considering one of the things I don't like about typical suburban subdivisions is how rare it can be to see people outside, I wonder if the situation is similar in these other small cities since they obviously don't have the population that Minneapolis does. A nice old downtown/commercial district is cool, but if it's basically a ghost town, then having one is almost moot.
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Old 06-27-2016, 11:15 AM
 
772 posts, read 845,720 times
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North st paul has a 50's 60's carshow every friday for the summer.. mostly older folk,
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Old 06-27-2016, 11:27 AM
 
Location: Saint Paul, MN
1,365 posts, read 1,771,578 times
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I'll start with my bias upfront: I am a city person through and through. (Although I didn't grow up that way.)

Even trying to step outside of that, I can't see why you personally would even consider the suburbs. I don't mean that in a snarky way. The things that draw people to the suburbs--new! quiet! lots of space between houses!--are directly opposed to the things you say you are looking for--established! vibrant! walkable!

I think West 7th is a great suggestion. It's an up-and-coming neighborhood that can lean slightly "gritty" (not dangerous, but not immaculate golf-course lawns and croquet parties.) It's near downtown Saint Paul, which is a much more interesting and vibrant place than it was 5 years ago. It's also highly walkable to a wide range of independent shops in the area. Your budget leaves plenty of room for a lovely home: something like this stunner could be had for 40K under your ceiling. 325 Daly St, Saint Paul, MN 55102 | MLS #4723528 | Zillow

Highland Park itself and Mac Groveland to the north (full disclosure--that's where I live) would both be obvious choices for someone working in Highland Park. Both great neighborhoods, more upscale than West 7th, so your budget will buy less house but you shouldn't have trouble finding homes in your price range. Both are filled with independent businesses and feature older homes with tons of character. (Highland Park leans toward MCM ranches and Mac Groveland has a lot of 1920s bungalows.)

South Minneapolis would be another fantastic choice. If you aren't put off by flight noise you could find a great deal in the Nokomis area, and the commute to Highland Park would be a breeze. If plane noise is a no-go then north and/or west of that area would be better.

It boils down to this, IMO: you can afford to live in the city, you live in the city now, and you seem to value the attributes of city life. You may be able to find somewhere in the vast expanses of suburbia that offers some of the advantages of city life, but why struggle with that search when the actual city is available to you?
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