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Old 07-09-2010, 11:55 AM
 
385 posts, read 1,106,482 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azdr0710 View Post
are either of you working?....do you plan to stay in this new place for several years?....does it have to be in Chandler?....
Yes, my husband accepted a job, and the company is located in Chandler, which is why we are relocating. He likes to keep his commute to a minimum, that's why we're looking at Chandler, Gilbert, and the Ahwatukee Foothills area. As vast as those areas are he may still have a commute... LOL.

I ran a home daycare in MI, so when we moved to SC I closed my doors, and have been a stay-at-home mom since. Now being an empty nester, I may work, or continue to be a stay-at-homer, so I can travel back to SC and visit our younger children - they're in college, the youngest is only 17 and I'm having a tough time leaving her, she's just starting college, and we're both struggling with this move.
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Arizona!
646 posts, read 919,625 times
Reputation: 1030
Quote:
Originally Posted by RJ17015 View Post
Well I've arrived in Phoenix, and so far love it (except for the dead scorpion I found in the rental house). The heat doesn't bother me, since we lived in Charleston - and had the humidity - which I HATE. I understand when the monsoons hit Phoenix does get humid though, but understand the light show is awesome.

Anyway we started house hunting in the Chandler area, and I am overwhelmed to say the least. Even with the new builds - OMG, so many to chose from, I had to quit after a few hours. We have yet to look at pre-owned homes, since we're not with a RE agent yet.

I still believe the value would be with a pre-owned home, since the homes have depreciated so much. We'd like a pool, so if we could find a pre-owned that has a pool, that would save us $30K right there, not to mention landscape, and window treatments.

It's tempting to buy more house than you need with the prices slashed so far, houses valued (at one time) $700-$900K for under $500K, but I REALLY would like to downsize this time, since our kids aren't moving with us - so it's just us 2 now.

It's just so confusing, and overwhelming - where to start? I understand the foreclosures and short sales are difficult to buy, since it takes so long for bank approval, and we may have a buyer on our house in Charleston - prior to listing, so our turn around time is short.

Any advice is welcome - we can spend up to $500K (maybe more), but would prefer to spend much less. Where do you predict the best buy is? Where in the area do you predict to bounce back - say IF we need to sell?
I would agree that if it's not critical you buy right away, then rent for awhile so you can explore and learn the various areas. In your situation as new empty nesters you may want to find your final place, as we did. One more final move, is what we were wanting. We visited Phoenix a number of times over the past few years, to learn what area we wanted to be in. When we found it, we got a realtor to help us out. A fantastic agent who was very knowledgeable in short sales & foreclosures, and since we had time, that's what we went after. We started working with her last fall and moved here last month.

In your price range, the market is still declining somewhat. ie, a buyers market. There are a lot of good deals to be had. In some areas you can get properties that were listed for 1M+ 2 years ago for half that today. The portal she set us up with was great because you could follow pricing history.

We ended up buying a place just slightly larger than our old house, but with fewer bedrooms, so larger living areas. And a breathtaking view.
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:14 PM
 
385 posts, read 1,106,482 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zippyman View Post
You really ought to rent first - there's a lot of neighborhood quirks that you'll love or hate, and I'd hate to see anyone spend that kind of money & regret it. Get a one year lease, settle in, and pick exactly the right place for you. You'll have alot of places to pick from in your price range, and well below it.

I used to live around Rural rd & Chandler blvd, that was a quiet neighborhood with lots of great shopping & restaurants... Personally, I like to live near a Costco, there's a couple in that hood. would definitely move back If I had work there.
When we moved to Charleston, we rented a house for 6 months, and we never felt comfortable there. BUT we never rented before, so I was nervous about everything. We didn't even hang a picture, I sweated every mark on the wall (scuff) when we moved, I just couldn't relax. It was smaller than we were used to also.

Then my husband is frugal, his company's relo package isn't that generous, and we'll probably use every penny, and some of our $ to move us here. To move everything into a rental, and then move it out a year later will cost some $ - it cost us over $2K just to get our stuff moved out of storage last year. So I know neither of us will want to move again - we've moved way too much in the last few years, and it's getting old.

Other than the scorpions, what could be so bad? What kind of quirks - I'm just curious?
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:24 PM
 
385 posts, read 1,106,482 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyme4878 View Post
Don't forget that those kids and other family and friends (and second cousins, and friends of friends...) are going to want to visit, especially around February! Why anyone would want a super-large house they then have to clean or pay someone to clean is beyond me, but keeping in mind the guests!
Yes - been there done that - we lived in San Diego and Charleston. But as we've gotten older it seems family comes to visit less. We've always bought a large house to accommodate family, but that is getting old. Keeping up our current house isn't terrible (4400 square foot), but it just seems silly to have a house that big when it's going from 4 of us down to 2.

We both lost our fathers prior to moving, so our mothers are not comfortable flying alone. On one side all families have kids in school, so usually find it difficult to travel, on the other side, they don't like heat, nor travelling - so?

As for our kids, if we buy a 3 bedroom house - should be big enough. Having a big house to accommodate a visit once in a blue moon isn't appealing.
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:50 PM
 
385 posts, read 1,106,482 times
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Just found another scorpion in the laundry room, am surprised because I thought they hid in daylight. I'm hesitant to put my hand in the cupboards now, or in my purse, suitcase... Just gives me the creeps.
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Old 07-09-2010, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Phoenix AZ
5,693 posts, read 9,390,596 times
Reputation: 8539
Quote:
Originally Posted by RJ17015 View Post
When we moved to Charleston, we rented a house for 6 months, and we never felt comfortable there. BUT we never rented before, so I was nervous about everything. We didn't even hang a picture, I sweated every mark on the wall (scuff) when we moved, I just couldn't relax. It was smaller than we were used to also.

Then my husband is frugal, his company's relo package isn't that generous, and we'll probably use every penny, and some of our $ to move us here. To move everything into a rental, and then move it out a year later will cost some $ - it cost us over $2K just to get our stuff moved out of storage last year. So I know neither of us will want to move again - we've moved way too much in the last few years, and it's getting old.

Other than the scorpions, what could be so bad? What kind of quirks - I'm just curious?
Not "bad" really, just things that might give you a touch of buyer's remorse. Moving in and finding your commute is longer than expected ( learning the traffic patterns in PHX is HUGE - my little bro loved our Rental in Chandler when he was working @ the proving grounds because traffic was completely blocked coming into town every morning, but he was going the other way... @ 80mph... He then HATED the same house when he worked downtown, because he was one of those people stuck in that traffic. ).

Also, the neighborhoods can vary widely - Our old place in Chandler had newer homes, a really super park, and 1000% walkable. There was grass! Not all neighborhoods have it, not all people here want it, but the world is a little prettier with some green.

There's one neighborhood in Tempe that has "lakefront" ( more of a "moat", but it IS really picturesque!).

We moved to N. Scottsdale and had a great mountain view, but the HOA was murderously anal-retentive, the neighborhood wasn't really walkable, and the houses were so close together you could hear your neighbors flush the toilet.

Everything in the area we moved to in N. Scottsdale was brown. No grass, and very little green. After Chandler, it felt like living on the moon. We had scorpions in our house, and ran into rattlesnakes and wolves when we walked the dog. YMMV, but it was seriously like living in an Alfred Hitchcock movie. Oh, and our cars were burglarized whenever we left them parked outside, and a gang of thieves started stealing the wheels off of cars in people's driveways. You would never expect it by driving through the neighborhood, or by the property values.

FWIW, the house in chandler had peaked at around $250k, and the N. Scottsdale place was closer to $450k... proof imho that money doesn't buy happiness


Chandler has some of the same types of neighborhoods - older, newer, green, "moonscape" - some areas are more "urban" ( lots of shopping & restaurants ), and some areas are so remote you could feel isolated.

In the price range you specified, you'll have lots of homes to pick from , and those homes still have a long way to fall - not many people in Phoenix make enough money to buy $500k homes, based on wage data $150k is a stretch for most.

Also, summer is the absolute worst time to buy in Phoenix - for some reason, everyone buys in the summer - in December, you'll see the lowest prices of the year.

As for moving more than once - believe me, I understand - we moved 3 times in the past 4 years, but just bite the bullet and hire it out - we got five guys and two trucks to move us from Scottsdale last year- (2400 sq ft house) - it cost about $1200.

You'll save alot more than that by buying later in the year, and have much more time to pick just the "right" house and neighborhood.

Good luck in your search!
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:12 PM
 
385 posts, read 1,106,482 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zippyman View Post
Not "bad" really, just things that might give you a touch of buyer's remorse. Moving in and finding your commute is longer than expected ( learning the traffic patterns in PHX is HUGE - my little bro loved our Rental in Chandler when he was working @ the proving grounds because traffic was completely blocked coming into town every morning, but he was going the other way... @ 80mph... He then HATED the same house when he worked downtown, because he was one of those people stuck in that traffic. ).

Also, the neighborhoods can vary widely - Our old place in Chandler had newer homes, a really super park, and 1000% walkable. There was grass! Not all neighborhoods have it, not all people here want it, but the world is a little prettier with some green.

There's one neighborhood in Tempe that has "lakefront" ( more of a "moat", but it IS really picturesque!).

We moved to N. Scottsdale and had a great mountain view, but the HOA was murderously anal-retentive, the neighborhood wasn't really walkable, and the houses were so close together you could hear your neighbors flush the toilet.

Everything in the area we moved to in N. Scottsdale was brown. No grass, and very little green. After Chandler, it felt like living on the moon. We had scorpions in our house, and ran into rattlesnakes and wolves when we walked the dog. YMMV, but it was seriously like living in an Alfred Hitchcock movie. Oh, and our cars were burglarized whenever we left them parked outside, and a gang of thieves started stealing the wheels off of cars in people's driveways. You would never expect it by driving through the neighborhood, or by the property values.

FWIW, the house in chandler had peaked at around $250k, and the N. Scottsdale place was closer to $450k... proof imho that money doesn't buy happiness


Chandler has some of the same types of neighborhoods - older, newer, green, "moonscape" - some areas are more "urban" ( lots of shopping & restaurants ), and some areas are so remote you could feel isolated.

In the price range you specified, you'll have lots of homes to pick from , and those homes still have a long way to fall - not many people in Phoenix make enough money to buy $500k homes, based on wage data $150k is a stretch for most.

Also, summer is the absolute worst time to buy in Phoenix - for some reason, everyone buys in the summer - in December, you'll see the lowest prices of the year.

As for moving more than once - believe me, I understand - we moved 3 times in the past 4 years, but just bite the bullet and hire it out - we got five guys and two trucks to move us from Scottsdale last year- (2400 sq ft house) - it cost about $1200.

You'll save alot more than that by buying later in the year, and have much more time to pick just the "right" house and neighborhood.

Good luck in your search!
I can so relate - I was in the master bathroom (rental house), and couldn't figure out what I was hearing - it was the neighbors music - and it wasn't even that loud, I could hear - what sounded like slamming doors/drawers - again the neighbors. I was surprised since the rental house is all closed up.

As for moving: 2008/2009 - we moved around 6 times; between selling the lake house, moving hubby down, then kids and I down, from apartment to rental house to our house - in and out of storage - it was crazy.

You got a good deal on your move to get 2 guys and a truck to move us out of storage into our house, in the same city cost us $2k alone. But trust me they moved sooooo slow, since they got paid by the hour. We hired professionals to move us from MI to SC - and cost around $7K - I did the packing, but they did the moving. But we had over 3600 sq. ft plus a finished basement full, but did get rid of a lot prior to moving. Hope to do the same again.

Thanks for all your help - will talk to hubby about renting - it's tough since interest rates are so low, and rental is so high right now. When we move he's always anxious to get settled in, move on, he doesn't like living in limbo - but we were always able to do that when he worked for the auto industry - he doesn't realize it's not so easy any more.
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:32 PM
 
Location: Casa Grande, AZ (May 08)
1,446 posts, read 3,110,138 times
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RJ -

Not to move this BACK to a scorpion thing - but are you sure they are in fact scorpions? I mean its possible, but most of us rarely see as many as you have already in a YEAR (if that), much less a few days.
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Phoenix AZ
5,693 posts, read 9,390,596 times
Reputation: 8539
Quote:
Originally Posted by sh9730 View Post
RJ -

Not to move this BACK to a scorpion thing - but are you sure they are in fact scorpions? I mean its possible, but most of us rarely see as many as you have already in a YEAR (if that), much less a few days.
In our rental in N.Scottsdale I'd find 3-5 a week inside the house in the summer.. My neighbor found 20-30 a week INSIDE his house in the summer. Our houses were literally 10 feet apart.

Get this - he had a pest guy out twice a month... we never did!!!

I wonder if the pest guy was feeding them instead of killing them....,

Luckily, they stopped "visiting" after the nighttime temps dropped below 80.
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Old 07-09-2010, 03:46 PM
 
Location: in transition
164 posts, read 617,288 times
Reputation: 182
Quote:
Originally Posted by RJ17015 View Post
Yes - been there done that - we lived in San Diego and Charleston. But as we've gotten older it seems family comes to visit less. We've always bought a large house to accommodate family, but that is getting old. Keeping up our current house isn't terrible (4400 square foot), but it just seems silly to have a house that big when it's going from 4 of us down to 2.

We both lost our fathers prior to moving, so our mothers are not comfortable flying alone. On one side all families have kids in school, so usually find it difficult to travel, on the other side, they don't like heat, nor travelling - so?

As for our kids, if we buy a 3 bedroom house - should be big enough. Having a big house to accommodate a visit once in a blue moon isn't appealing.
Ha! I totally agree -- have trouble explaining to family sometimes that we aren't setting aside a "guest room" for the 2-3 weeks a year it would be used. It's a heck of a lot less expensive for them to just stay at a hotel if a couch or hide-a-bed in the living room isn't good enough. Why should I pay for, heat/cool, and clean space for the occasional visit? We have 3 young kids and to be honest it's usually best for all parties if our parents have a hotel to escape to anyways (guests want some peace; kids need some routine esp around bedtime).

Of course, don't know how well that will fly since we just bought a 5 BR house, but I'd still rather have a craft room or study room for the kids (I homeschool so we need more space than if we were only home a couple hours a day together), esp without a basement to store "stuff".

Anyway, good luck! We chose Chandler over Gilbert just because of the greater diversity, more progressive vibe. Definitely need to spend some time hanging around -- go to the local stores and check out prospective neighbors, people watch. We didn't want to move twice either, so we've been living in a hotel for almost 2mo with all our stuff stored in an ABF semi-truck.
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