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Old 04-01-2009, 10:44 AM
55 posts, read 146,405 times
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Anyone looking in RI should sign up on www.riliving.com; it's tied into the MLS system. There is demographic and tax information on the upper tabs, and you can track properites on a "favorites" list. There is also bonafide information and quarterly statistics on the "home sales statistics" column. The Providence Journal in their real estate section also tracks listing price and selling price in various cities and towns.

There is no way I'd live in or near Elmwood, Elmhurst, Federal Hill. Used to be beautiful areas, but hasn't been good for 20 years or more. Some areas around the "Cranston Armory" are ghettos. Stay away from the Plainfield St. areas and Olneyville areas as well.

Family areas are west, north and south of Providence. Cumberland, Lincoln, North Smithfield, etc. Parts of East Providence (Rumford, Kent Heights, Riverside); Barrington (pricey on the water). If you want hiking, you have to go to the state parks or down by the beaches.
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Old 04-01-2009, 11:05 AM
Location: Beautiful Rhode Island
5,986 posts, read 9,965,531 times
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The areas that were suggested were based on the OP's request for diversity as well as affordability. I'm familiar with Oakland; here's the breakdown of residents there:

Population by Race
African American36%
Native American1%
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:34 PM
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Hey, JupiterL --
I now live in Providence and also lived in Oakland for two years (a couple of years ago), so I can definitely offer some comparisons. We left because it was so darn expensive. Can you be more specific about where in Oakland you live? We lived just north of Lake Merritt -- just off Piedmont, but close to 580, so there was a little sketchiness. But we'd walk to Peet's and the little grocery store and all that on Piedmont Ave. I'd say that the East Side -- Wayland Square and along Hope St. near Brown -- feel a lot like Piedmont Ave.
Now we live in the Armory district in Providence. I'd say it's sort of like Adams Point in terms of safeness, shabbiness, and access to amenities, and diversity. The less-safe-feeling parts tend to be more like that area around the MacArthur BART station in Oakland. There are some cool restaurants to walk to, but no coffee shops or grocery stores just around the corner. But Providence is so small, you can walk from here to the East Side in about 20 minutes. My husband walks home from work on the East Side! And on your way, you'll pass a couple of hipster-ish places, like this: White Electric There are creative people in Providence. But it's small, so it does feel provincial compared to the Bay Area or any other large city. But Oakland isn't exactly Manhattan, either!
Also, hiking! We also love hiking, and we are finding it very easy to get to nature spots. There's a lot to explore -- large forest preserves, parks, and the bay/ocean. Getting to the ocean is faster here than getting to the ocean from Oakland (because you don't have to maneuver past SF or Mill Valley!).
You might like Providence if you can bring your work with you or have something lined up. I wouldn't count on getting a job here, that's for sure!
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Old 04-04-2009, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by JupiterL View Post
How expensive are houses in Providence? We both are creative professionals and live in a really diverse and hip neighborhood in Oakland, with tons of coffee shops and amazing eateries, etc. Where might this exist in Providence? We also love the outdoors and have a big dog. Are there good hiking opportunities near Providence?
We moved to RI two years ago and I'm still looking to find what you're talking about!!! I have found 3 streets so far (Thayer, Wickendon & S. Main St) within Providence that have some shops (coffee, antique, quaint, quirky movie houses) but overall...huge disappointment as a city in and of itself. Waterfires are beautiful. There are only two health food stores in Providence that I've found & both are Wholefoods. Atwells Ave isn't bad...isn't great either compared to CA or say, Portland OR. Lots of restaraunts but culinary creativity isn't apparent. And watch what part of the city you venture into...drugs, gangs and so forth. The city could do something amazing with Allens Ave by the pier but currently it's lowlife redlight district that is the city's shame (imo.)

Newport is beautiful but touristy, overpriced/crowded in summer and you need to go through Middletown to get there. Dead in the winter.

Jamestown is also beautiful but don't blink or you'll miss downtown. Beautiful to spend the day by the lighthouse & such...bring a lunch.

Outdoorsy hikes & nature you need to check out S. County but know there's absolutely nothing else down there. Beaches are beautiful but too many of them aren't easily accessible in season and hard to find a place to park your car. Most other beaches are gonna run you $14-20 to park for the day & there's no boardwalk type of scene (and bring your own bottle water, no snack shops either on most beaches).

We have a great dane and have yet to find a dog friendly park where she can run free & play safely inside. Most hiking trails are "no dogs allowed".

The politics are among the most corrupt in the country...I personally love to watch the city plows drive along the city roads w/ their plows up 3-5" so they can run the clock into getting paid overtime...which my crazy-high tax dollars pay for...and the city does nothing but knows it. This is one of the major contributors of the horrible traffic when it snows...because the streets aren't plowed (but they receive paychecks to plow them!) and accidents are unavoidable (but silly me, the only thing that matters is getting more $...not people's lives! and hey, they have insurance, right??) "Not my problem" is the motto in this state! .

When I ask people why they stay or moved here it's b/c of family...we stay b/c I found a job here w/ good benefits (also very rare in this state!!) & we're close enough to our ailing parents. Hubby has a mediocre job but we are starting to look else where in the country.

The money this state pays out to welfare/state programs is extremely shocking!! I know, I work in the health care industry... for one example, this state has a specific program which only supplies birth control methods/devices and that's the whole point of the program. We can't coordinate reasonable healthcare but by the Govenor, we will pay for the young teens to have sex w/out parental knowledge or say so but with sex counseling! ummm...oh yeah, when that fails and they get pregnant anyways...we have a program for that too (also fully paid for by the state & I'm talking millions of tax dollars to shell out birthcontrol.).

I used to love the beauty of this little state..and still do. But to live here is completely another story.
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Old 04-05-2009, 07:39 PM
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Silvertone - Thanks for your insights. I actually live in Temescal, the area near the MacArthur BART. It's not so sketchy anymore. In fact, the stretch of Telegraph Ave here is starting to look a lot like Valencia Street in the Mission, in terms of cute restaurants, wine bar, coffee shops, etc. I hear you about the difficulty finding a job in Providence. I'm not planning on moving out there for a few years until the economy picks up- just doing some research. It's not so easy to get a job in the Bay Area right now either - I lost mine in January. What do you think of housing prices in Providence? Can you do well with around $400K? Do you think the public schools in Providence are really that crappy? They certainly aren't very good in Oakland, either. Maybe there are some charter schools that are decent?
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