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Northeastern Pennsylvania Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, Pocono area
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Wilkes-Barre, PA
1,689 posts, read 3,115,518 times
Reputation: 1234

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dutx52 View Post
It seems as though you are pretty convinced on making the move. I was too. Should have listened. A loaf of bread is a loaf of bread no matter where you buy it. We did the commute, not as pretty a picture as you think. Wear and tear on the car. An expense that was factored in but no where near enough. Taxes, well that's a life of it's own! In 30 years on a 30 year old house taxes went from $600.00 to $13,000 a year. That's 1200 extra per month. That worked out to be an additional part time job to pay the local pickpockets. Utilities, yep that was interesting. 4-500 a month in the coldest months. Schools, I have seen the rapid decline. I used the public system. It was good. In this time frame. Never. If I couldn't afford private school they would be home schooled. I would want my children safe. School bus commute, mostly long hours to accommodate the growing population. Finally after 3 years we were able to move on. Who wants to buy a house with 13k in taxes only destined to keep climbing? Tax reform, don't hold your breath. That would be in there with the train that's been coming for 30 years. Would I do it again? Never. Well thought out plan, excellent income, money in the bank. Yes we did all right but regrets I have many. The day my kids were able they left and never looked back. Sorry, but to each their own and I thank the Lord I was able to get out. Many of my friends are still trying.
What part of NEPA did you relocate to? I read these stories of misfortune and I always get thinking, wasn't a lot of this information available before the move? I think the problem here is many people are getting the idea that they can go to a luxury type spot and pay bottom dollar. If you are going think economically than think that way. Stop worrying about every little negative you see, you are not going to find that perfect dream palace for cheap with low taxes. if you want that dream home by the lake expect to pay big bucks. There are many small affordable homes for sale all over the valley and some of them are in nice areas. You will likely though have to go into areas like Scranton or Wilkes Barre to get them if you want to stay on the lower end of things. It doesn't mean you have to buy on a bad street in the ghetto, just do your research carefully before you buy. Use your street smarts, look over each area carefully when you are looking at the house. I have a great view overlooking the whole valley yet I live about two miles from the center of Wilkes Barre, my street is nice and quiet and the neighbors are pleasant. My taxes are reasonable and I put the saved money from buying cheap back into the house. I insulated and improved and my utilities are low. You just have to do the homework and then the elbow grease and be diligent if you are going to succeed at this. if you dream for the Castle in the Sky you will never get there.
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Old 03-09-2014, 09:10 AM
 
38 posts, read 44,973 times
Reputation: 69
I lived there for 30 years. Took me 3 years to sell my house. I owned it free and clear so I was able to take the loss and get out. My husband and I are both retired. We were not when we moved there. Did not see the future, tax hike, utilities, etc. 30 years prior. If we stayed we would have to work for the rest of our lives to pay the taxes. Funny how every time there is an election, the tax issue is resurrected. Tell people what they want to hear so they vote for the legal thief trying to pick your pocket. If what I say was wrong, why does the issue keep coming up? Just to clarify for the doubters, I will gladly provide a tax bill from my closing statement upon purchase till moving. I have no reason to fabricate as I am gone. I have no interest in who moves into the area anymore. Does not amount to anything in my life at this point. I did not have a large house I was in Middle Smithfield township. 1400 sq feet, 3 bedroom,2 baths and a basement and garage. Nothing out of the norm on 1/2 acre not in a private community. Yes it was a combination of school taxes and state taxes. What's the difference? Still has to be paid. Are you saying because they are 2 separate bills thee is a free pass? Then please explain all the tax sales? If you are not seeing the tax base rise, you need to get out more. Most people are not giving up their homes for mortgages but taxes. Add another 1,000 into the mortgage per month. Let's not forget about the garbage pick up. 2 bags equates to 60 dollars a quarter. If you put more out you pay more. Let' include he cost of maintaining your septic and well. Forget about repairing it. You are obviously in either Pike county or Mt. Pocono. two different animals. Let's see who payed for the legal fees in Middle Smithfield Towship.? Who paid for the bypass? If you are not sure what you speak of do not try to make someone wrong. I am speaking from my own experience, not yours. jtab4994, you may be very happy. I was tired of paying for every little thing because the county, township or school district thought it was right. Yes the commute was horrible. Monday to Friday dead as a door knob on Saturday. Sunday trying to convince ourselves it's time to do it all again. Getting home by 7-8PM, Leaving work at 4PM. Always an accident or road construction somewhere. Getting up at 4AM to leave by 5AM to miss the traffic. The winters were horrible. Just because the schools are closed here, does not mean they are closed anywhere else. Do you think the plows are out from PA to NY just because you have to get to work at 5AM? Yes we became bears to each other. Yes we both lucked out and found good paying jobs in our profession locally. We didn't have to commute after 10 years, it still took it's toll. Yes we convinced friends to move too. Misery loves company. They left within a year. The school system stinks. The kids today are not educated. My kids would never be in any of the school districts there. I don't expect anyone to see the world through my eyes. This is my opinion based on my experience. We have relocated to a different state, Lakefront 2000 sq. feet, 4 bedrooms to accommodate the grandchildren. $2900 a year in taxes. Including a Senior and homestead exemption. Couldn't be happier here. I have no motive to discourage anyone. Your money. Spend it as you wish. Different strokes for different folks.
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Old 03-09-2014, 09:49 AM
 
Location: Wilkes-Barre, PA
1,689 posts, read 3,115,518 times
Reputation: 1234
Thank you for the insightful comments dutx52, it affirms what many of us have believed about the Stroudsburg area. A congested expensive overflow of the NY/NJ Metropolis. If people truly want to escape urbanism they must move farther now and plan ahead by finding new jobs closer to their new home.
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Old 03-09-2014, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Long Island and PA too:)
213 posts, read 253,976 times
Reputation: 113
Default I'm leaving myself wide open :D

dutx52....is there anything wrong with Pike Cty or Mount Pocono?
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Old 03-09-2014, 02:06 PM
 
38 posts, read 44,973 times
Reputation: 69
Nothing wrong with it if that's where you choose. We needed to be closer to the bridge for work. Weather is different in the Mt. Pocono area and Pike area. Pocono Mt. school dist and East Stroudsburg are the worst. I would be checking the crime stats with the state police before I picked an area. Wait at the school bus stop in the area you pick to see who and what gets off the school bus. These are going to be your neighbors. Go to the supermarket and see who is shopping. These are your neighbors. Go to the churches. Then make a decision on the area. Knock on doors and ask questions. I would also check the ratio of graduates who went on to better themselves as opposed who did not. There is a wealth of info out there for whatever area you pick. Due your due diligence and have no regrets. Once the move is made it will be too hard financially to get out. It will take some time to recoup and move on. It was not something we entered into lightly but regretted it almost immediately. Did not want to uproot my kids again so we stuck it out till we could go.My kids all graduated college, have successful careers but left the area to obtain that and never looked back. Again, my opinion based on my 30 years of experience with the Pocono area.
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Old 03-09-2014, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Long Island and PA too:)
213 posts, read 253,976 times
Reputation: 113
Quote:
Originally Posted by dutx52 View Post
Nothing wrong with it if that's where you choose. We needed to be closer to the bridge for work. Weather is different in the Mt. Pocono area and Pike area. Pocono Mt. school dist and East Stroudsburg are the worst. I would be checking the crime stats with the state police before I picked an area. Wait at the school bus stop in the area you pick to see who and what gets off the school bus. These are going to be your neighbors. Go to the supermarket and see who is shopping. These are your neighbors. Go to the churches. Then make a decision on the area. Knock on doors and ask questions. I would also check the ratio of graduates who went on to better themselves as opposed who did not. There is a wealth of info out there for whatever area you pick. Due your due diligence and have no regrets. Once the move is made it will be too hard financially to get out. It will take some time to recoup and move on. It was not something we entered into lightly but regretted it almost immediately. Did not want to uproot my kids again so we stuck it out till we could go.My kids all graduated college, have successful careers but left the area to obtain that and never looked back. Again, my opinion based on my 30 years of experience with the Pocono area.
I can totally understand your decision to move, I live on LI and my taxes are over $10,000....a far cry from the $1100 from when we moved here 34 years ago. We will most likely be moving too when we both retire. I hate handing over my paycheck just to pay taxes. We have a weekend home in Bushkill off Winona Falls Rd and the taxes are only $2000 which we really are happy about but then again, we do not have kids going to school there. We like the area and don't mind the trip for a weekend or more but don't have to commute to work, which I personally would not do.
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Old 03-09-2014, 05:08 PM
 
136 posts, read 156,367 times
Reputation: 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarge621 View Post
Catlover84 I honestly think if you make a move, as a young couple you will probably triple the chance of you getting divorced. I am not judging you or your husband but the Poconos has a high divorce rate. I would blame a lot of that on the times that spouses spend apart commuting. Weary days commuters have where just saying hello will start a fight. Long bus rides sharing conversations with others, sharing facebook pages. The aggravation, time apart, smart phones and social media destroys families. Wives left home along all day, kids at school, time to remind yourself your alone all the time. Not good either. You and your husband could very well be an exception to this rule and your undeniable devotion to one another could make this all a worthless post for you to consider but..... I am a betting man and as a betting man the odds are probably stacked 80-1 against you and any other young couple making this type of move and commute. If you really love your husband don't do it.....

lol but the odds are stacked against us even more on LI. It's a bad rat race here, and hard to stay afloat financially. And for the record ,we're very rarely on social media and very rarely text (esp. not when we're together). We're pretty old fashioned and not the typical couple. And like I said, he would get home around 6pm, which is when most people get home anyway from 9-5 jobs (which as you know, teachers don't).
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Old 03-09-2014, 05:13 PM
 
136 posts, read 156,367 times
Reputation: 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by dutx52 View Post
We have relocated to a different state, Lakefront 2000 sq. feet, 4 bedrooms to accommodate the grandchildren. $2900 a year in taxes. Including a Senior and homestead exemption. Couldn't be happier here. I have no motive to discourage anyone. Your money. Spend it as you wish. Different strokes for different folks.
What area did you move to? That's our issue-- my husband has seniority/tenure where he is, makes almost top salary, so it would virtually be starting over if he were to find a teaching job elsewhere. And don't even get my started with the lack of unions elsewhere (please don't turn this into a political debate--just saying our union is helping us keep free benefits, and tenure). He said he'd hate to be anywhere else walking on needles just worried he might lose his job. That's why we considered PA, since he'd keep his job. We have time to think about it, thankfully, and really have to weigh the pros and cons through the next couple of years.

Last edited by Catlover84; 03-09-2014 at 05:24 PM..
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:47 PM
 
38 posts, read 44,973 times
Reputation: 69
Not a political issue Catlover84, just economical. Before I would make a decision I would either find a friend to bunk with or stay at a hotel. Do the commute for a week or two to get a feel for it. But do it in real time when everyone else is doing it. See how it goes. Remember the schools in NY do not close when the schools in Pa close(Bad weather) I realize your quitting time but also remember you are going to be travelling from Long Island to Bronx to hit the GW Bridge unless you go through Staten Island from the Belt Parkway. I worked at Kennedy Airport. I did not punch a clock, I owned my own business. I had a lot of freedom and never worked 9-5. I finally sold my business and reinvented myself to get out of the rat race. My husband worked at the foot of the GW Bridge and did punch a clock. Because of the difference in times we drove our own cars. Bus did not do the commute 30 years ago, there were none. When the bus did come available it was too expensive and our hours made no sense for a bus. Always hit traffic. A sporting event, construction, accident etc. About 10 years ago a friend of mine lost her husband in an accident on 80 on his way to work, he fell asleep behind the wheel. I am not telling you not to do it, and not looking for any political debate. This is my experience based on my life. Would I do it again? Not even in a dream. I had wished I had someone who could have guided me with info and I would have listened. I had plenty of emergencies, happens all the times with kids. I had good friends who would help me. But short of a helicopter how fast can you or your husband get back to Pa in a real emergency. Neighbors are not like they were back then. They are all on the road too. Believe me the expense is nothing at all that I thought and the expense of living in Pa is not at all cheaper. I have relocated to Florida, cheaper cost of living, no state income tax and great weather. I wish I would have came here first but experience is the best teacher.
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Old 03-09-2014, 07:11 PM
 
5,165 posts, read 6,638,358 times
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Will your husband's health insurance be in network at places in NEPA? That will also be something to consider. What good is health insurance if you can't use it where you live? How would you like to bring a screaming infant with a raging ear infection on a drive back to NY to see their pediatrician?

I have been a long time visitor to NEPA and thought often about moving there. Doing the math makes it not such a great idea. Local jobs pay poorly and it really is an economically depressed area unfortunately, hence the low housing prices. If living there was so great, the prices would be much higher. There is little demand for people to live there full time because of all the reasons others have said. Also, the commute also doesn't make much sense when you add in commuting costs, emotional stress etc. Starting his day leaving at 3 AM and getting back at 6 if he's lucky? Don't expect too much bonding/family time.

Have him try it for 2 weeks after the baby is born. Let him stay at a hotel and commute. He gets used to the daily grind, and you get used to the isolation. Then you can make an educated decision.
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