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Old 03-10-2007, 01:53 PM
 
7 posts, read 28,417 times
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Default Moving to Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area - need advice!

Hi there! I am new to this forum, and this is the first of what I imagine will be many posts My husband and I are moving to the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area this summer and are in the beginning stages of searching for a home. I'm looking for some advice about the best areas in which to look. We are obviously looking for the best investment possible, in an area with solid school district, strong housing market with high returns, etc. Here are some questions:

1) What area in RDC has the strongest (most stable) housing market, with the highest appreciation rates? What are the rates like?

2) What area has the best schools?

Hmmmm... I think that's enough to start with. Thanks so much for all of your help!
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Wake Forest
2,828 posts, read 7,923,006 times
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The area is so very big that it will be tough to answer your questions simply. They all have a different feel, and it really depends on where you are going to work. For instance, you don't want to live in chapel hill if you are working in north raleigh, it wouldn't make sense.

So, chapel hill (carrboro is basically attached to chapel hill and is a little less expensive, and they share the same school system) is a typical college town, but has a great feel to it. Housing is quite expensive, and you are not going to find new homes, but often older homes that may need some fixing. Yes, there are new homes, but they are no where near as plentiful as places in wake county. The school system is one of the strongest in the state.

Raleigh encompasses a huge area, and many people refer to raleigh in a couple of ways:, inside the beltline (areas in and around downtown raleigh which includes many many beautiful neighborhoods that can be expensive but have more historical homes that could possibly be fixed up or added on to if necessary),
north raleigh: there is discussion as to what encompasses north raleigh, and it used to be anything north of the beltline to capital blvd. Well, now 540 is in place and more people think of north raleigh as closer to 540 and north (toward wake forest)
raleigh is very big has many areas and many wonderful neighborhoods, the schools (wake county) are very good but are experiencing a tremendous amount of growth so many people face at least one school reassignment in the next three years.

There are many many towns surrounding raleigh that people live in and love:
cary
apex
holly springs
fuquay varina
clayton
garner
wake forest
rolesville

Durham: many people tend to discount durham on the surface because, in my opinion, it is more blue collar, there is more reported crime, and the property taxes are higher and the school system is not as strong as chapel hill and most of wake county, but there are good schools in durham. But, durham is a beautiful city, there are some areas that leave something to be desired, but you can say the same about raleigh. Durham is one of the best places to live in terms of commuting to research triangle park and other areas. Housing may be a little cheaper in durham, but it depends on what you are looking for.

Honestly, the best thing to do is decide where you will be working and commuting, and if that is not an issue, then you really need to come and visit and see which area appeals to you most. They are all distinct and different in their own way.

Sorry this wasn't much help, but the area is quite big and it would hard to answer simply!

Leigh
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:20 PM
 
43 posts, read 137,075 times
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The highest appreciation rates are in the North East and South West coast of this country.... If you bought a house in NE or SW area 5 years ago (assuming you paid it off) and sell it, you could come to RDC area and pay off a much bigger and better house now. But if you bought a house in RDC 5 years ago and sell it now, you can only buy half of the house in NE and SW area now. If you are looking for best investment, look somewhere else. But if you are looking for better life style, then you may come to the right place. I have not moved to RDC area yet, but this is what I feel right now.
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:31 PM
 
7 posts, read 28,417 times
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Thanks for the great advice! I apologize for being vague - we are just trying to get a sense of what the best 2-3 areas in the region are before focusing our search.

My husband will be working in Chapel Hill, so proximity to that area is important. We've heard great things about Chapel Hill, but wanted to make sure we aren't overlooking other areas as well before we contact an agent and start searching in earnest.

As far as 'investment' - we are committed to moving to this region and just want to make sure that we purchase a home that will appreciate as much as possible, given the geographic location. We may be moving again in 2-3 years, so this is especially important to us. For example, I'd like to know if the houses in Chapel Hill appreciate faster than those in Durham or vice versa, all things equal, etc.

Thanks again!
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Old 03-10-2007, 04:24 PM
 
1,531 posts, read 5,126,290 times
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If he's working in Chapel Hill, then I highly suggest you limit your search to areas closer to it. Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Durham, Hillsborough, Calvander, Bynum and maybe Pittsboro. Anything east of Durham, including all of Raleigh/Cary/Wake County will be a commute that will very much cause unneeded stress, costs, and other crap in his life. And no one needs that!
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Old 03-10-2007, 04:37 PM
 
480 posts, read 1,551,347 times
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You want rapid appreciation in 2-3 years? That's an awfully short timeframe, especially in the South. Everything moves slower in the South, including housing appreciation. (And not only that, but capital gains will eat up a good chunk of your appreciation, or may eliminate it altogether.)

On the surface, Chapel Hill definitely gets a higher rate of appreciation; this is because the schools in Chapel Hill have been well-rated for years. However, because Chapel Hill has had this reputation for years, housing prices in Chapel Hill have had many years to rise. Right now, your average $150,000 home in Durham will cost at least twice as much in Orange County, and the rate with which the housing price rises goes up considerably once you talk about entering Chapel Hill's city limits.

The average rate of appreciation in NC has been about 8%, but even in Chapel Hill, I would put the rate at no more than 12% throughout the years. At that rate, capital gains would nullify your profit at 2 years, and even at 3 years, the profit is negligible.

To that end, I would still recommend Chapel Hill as a place to live, as commuting to Chapel Hill from someplace else (other than Carrboro, the neighboring town) is a nightmare. But as a cash cow? I wouldn't bet on it.
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Old 03-10-2007, 06:16 PM
 
Location: Blacksburg, VA
823 posts, read 2,679,200 times
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If it's their primary residence, they wouldn't have to be concerned with federal capital gains. How about NC capital gains; are there any exclusions for them? Still, they would probably have to deduct 6% selling fee and decide if it's worth their while.
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:41 PM
 
2,537 posts, read 6,057,297 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeattlitefromNC View Post
You want rapid appreciation in 2-3 years? That's an awfully short timeframe, especially in the South. Everything moves slower in the South, including housing appreciation. (And not only that, but capital gains will eat up a good chunk of your appreciation, or may eliminate it altogether.)

On the surface, Chapel Hill definitely gets a higher rate of appreciation; this is because the schools in Chapel Hill have been well-rated for years. However, because Chapel Hill has had this reputation for years, housing prices in Chapel Hill have had many years to rise. Right now, your average $150,000 home in Durham will cost at least twice as much in Orange County, and the rate with which the housing price rises goes up considerably once you talk about entering Chapel Hill's city limits.

The average rate of appreciation in NC has been about 8%, but even in Chapel Hill, I would put the rate at no more than 12% throughout the years. At that rate, capital gains would nullify your profit at 2 years, and even at 3 years, the profit is negligible.

To that end, I would still recommend Chapel Hill as a place to live, as commuting to Chapel Hill from someplace else (other than Carrboro, the neighboring town) is a nightmare. But as a cash cow? I wouldn't bet on it.

While the market may be beginning to slow down somewhat, I would hardly say the profit on a home sale in Chapel Hill would be negligible in 2-3 years.

There is little to no new construction in town and the desire to live in Chapel Hill continues to exceed the supply of homes.....

First off, if they stay a minimum of 2 years capital gains won't touch the profit....

We stayed in our house 3 years and saw the value rise by 50%....pretty close to or even exceding the type of appreciation seen in the Northeast before the most recent crash. As always past performance does not guarantee future success, but I can't imagine any area anywhere else in the triangle has the same market forces at work as Chapel Hill.

Commuting into Chapel Hill is a nightmare???

Haven't heard that one before either. I don't know where you could live outside of Chapel Hill and have a tough time commuting into the city limits since most folks in the area are headed in the direction of Raleigh and RTP...
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:53 PM
 
2,537 posts, read 6,057,297 times
Reputation: 3559
Quote:
Originally Posted by carolina_on_my_mind View Post
Thanks for the great advice! I apologize for being vague - we are just trying to get a sense of what the best 2-3 areas in the region are before focusing our search.

My husband will be working in Chapel Hill, so proximity to that area is important. We've heard great things about Chapel Hill, but wanted to make sure we aren't overlooking other areas as well before we contact an agent and start searching in earnest.

As far as 'investment' - we are committed to moving to this region and just want to make sure that we purchase a home that will appreciate as much as possible, given the geographic location. We may be moving again in 2-3 years, so this is especially important to us. For example, I'd like to know if the houses in Chapel Hill appreciate faster than those in Durham or vice versa, all things equal, etc.

Thanks again!

If you will be working in Chapel Hill and want a strong school system, you will almost certainly see the best return on your investment if you live in Chapel Hill.

One of the most sought after neighborhoods in Chapel Hill for new families with kids is Southern Village. Homes sell quickly there so you have to move fast if you see something you like. Appreciation has been tremendous in the neighborhood as well if you do in fact need to sell in 2-3 years.

Good Luck
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Old 03-11-2007, 07:40 AM
 
7 posts, read 28,417 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks so much for the helpful advice. I guess we'll just focus our search to Chapel Hill.

I did *hear* from a family friend that parts of SW Durham are indistinguishable from Chapel Hill. Is this true, and if so - what "parts" might this be?

Thanks again!
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