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Old 08-06-2007, 06:12 PM
Location: Small town Texas, from Southern California
445 posts, read 1,601,668 times
Reputation: 79


Hi, we are native southern californians, both my husband and i were born and raised here.....and the past few years we have decided we want a change!!!

We have been several times to St. George, in November 06, and thought it would fit our family. I loved the style of the houses in the areas we were looking (River Hollow, Skyline Meadows, Washington Fields) any input would be great. I have been reading numerous threads, about the whole LDS/NON LDS thing, and i think it is all what you make it, no matter where you go!!

My questiuons would be, any experiences, from anyone in our situation?? I am a stay at home mom, of 3 little ones, 4 1/2, 3, and 5 months, i also have a son from my first marriage, who is 13, and lives with his dad. When we were in St. George, we were looking at a few houses,and met up with a contractor, whom was very nice, i was preganant at the same time as his wife, and funny we had children all the same ages!! He was very nice, super helpful, a great person. We got home from our trips, and talked to a few people here (wrong thing to do) about us moving to Utah, everyone was negative about LDS. I am NOT LDS, my mom was raised in a strong christian household, and as kids she did not regularly take us to church, so i guess i would say i am not into any religion. When we got home, i e-mailed the guy we met there, and politley asked him about the community and LDS and what not....Funny he responded, was super nice, andhe was LDS and has been his whole life, he actually thought we were LDS! And hoped i was not offended by that, and i told him, NO, i was not, there could be alot worse things to be assumed about a person, and that is not one of them!!

I guess i am wondering, i know i am not the only one out there that wants to be accepted and fit in, for our sakes, but mostly for our children. We are tired of the crazy busy life here, no one is friendly, everyone is so concerned about the house you live in and the car you drive, everyone wants to keep up with the Jones'....We have good values, and want a great childhood and life for our family!! I just don't want to be prejudged!

Also about the schools in the areas i mentioned, if anyone has info on them....I had spoken to a realtor when we were there, and they said they do wish Utah spent more money on education. Any comments on that? Anyone from California to Utah, and see anything bad in the schooling? If so, is private school and option or any better??

We have some time, as we have a house to sell, and my son is enrolled in a privat kindergarten, so it would be June 08. If our house sells before then, we plan to rent here, and make lots of trips there, to search for our dream home/area. We are planning to visit in the next month, so we can see the summer weather there a little. We are used to heat, as we are from Temecula, it is more a desert climate. Plus we love to go to the river (laughlin) we enjoy boating a lot in the summer!!

Thanks to anyone with insight or comments!!

Old 08-07-2007, 12:41 AM
242 posts, read 997,914 times
Reputation: 86
Better to buy a house already built, and have it checked by a reputable inspector. Short cuts on building here are rampent. In Cedar the under the table kickbacks and the polygs sending their young boys to work on the homes at night is the norm. St. George, it is more a if you want it fixed right to begin with, you have to be there constantly to oversee it. The workers don't care. Maybe when the locals get the idea the housing boom is over and the workers find their jobs are not so secure (even at lower wages) they might improve quality.

Education is no better or worse than California. It is a lot safer here. I never worried when my children went to school in this state. My son was stabbed at school in California. Your kids will fit in here as well as anywhere else. Especially since they would be starting young and be part of the orginal group.

There is Quail Creek and Sand Hollow reseavoirs A little west is Gunlock. A bit further east is Lake Powell. Going south you hit lake Mead. Lots of water to play in.
Old 08-07-2007, 05:25 PM
Location: Small town Texas, from Southern California
445 posts, read 1,601,668 times
Reputation: 79
Thanks so much!!

I am ready to start looking, i wish now my house was sold, and i had registered my little one in kindergarten!! We are looking for a slower pace, safer, greener, fresher, FRIENDLIER place!!!! We loved it when we came to visit, so i think next June it will be our home!!!!

I am southern cali, Temecula, not too much gang stuff, just punk kids here and there, we seem to have a lot of racial division, for a small community though, i don't know why!! It could be, we live close the border, and with all the "immigration" issues, that raises tensions!!!

So Much!!!!
Old 08-07-2007, 09:14 PM
1 posts, read 6,416 times
Reputation: 10
I am currently going to school here in St. George at Dixie college. I've lived here for a year and a half now. I have visted a few times every year since I was born. Seeing as you are from cali you will probably be able to afford the houses here. St George is a pretty good place to raise children. Schools I would sugest are Dixie high or Snow Canyon High I havn't heard much good about Pine View as the other two schools. The temperature is pretty hot as high as 120 degrees in the summer at the hottest. If you like to go out and do stuff I would not suggest living here, there is hardly anything to do. It was fun for the first two months I lived here but after that you've done it all, you can swim, hike, rock climb, eat, and go see movies. You might say hey rock climbing, hiking, biking sounds great but in the hot weather there is very limited time to do things. So you you don't like to go out with alot of options move here.
Old 08-08-2007, 09:30 AM
242 posts, read 997,914 times
Reputation: 86
Originally Posted by Mister O View Post
I am currently going to school here in St. George at Dixie college. I've lived here for a year and a half now. I have visted a few times every year since I was born. Seeing as you are from cali you will probably be able to afford the houses here. St George is a pretty good place to raise children. Schools I would sugest are Dixie high or Snow Canyon High I havn't heard much good about Pine View as the other two schools. The temperature is pretty hot as high as 120 degrees in the summer at the hottest. If you like to go out and do stuff I would not suggest living here, there is hardly anything to do. It was fun for the first two months I lived here but after that you've done it all, you can swim, hike, rock climb, eat, and go see movies. You might say hey rock climbing, hiking, biking sounds great but in the hot weather there is very limited time to do things. So you you don't like to go out with alot of options move here.
Prices on homes are relative. The cheapest new homes being sold right now are Pecan ridge. approx. 1100 to 1200 crapily built homes,with postage stamp yards (zero lot lines) for 179K for the cheapest. The next cheapest subdivision in the area is in Hurrican near the golf course. those house same stats and they run over 300K for them even though the price is listed as 269K for the cheapest, they hit you with things like fixtures actually being installed and floor coverings other than cement to take it up fast. Cali averages about $230/sq.ft. here other than Pecan ridge it is more like $260/sq.ft. for the cheapest built. Now for the existing houses yes you can find some cheap houses. Those are the extreme fixer uppers. By the time you fix and modernize them, the cost is high, since the contractors are going to charge you a premium and also get to when they feel like it. Currently a friend is having trouble getting a job done on their business. It was supposed to take 1 week to finish. With the kids who are doing it taking most the day off to text message their friends, and one broken piece of equipment that they sent for a part for, that took another week. The piece was available locally but they saved $10 sending to Vegas for it. The project has now gone into it's 4th week, and there is no end in sight. Sounds more like the movie the Money Pit!

As to activities, there are many here. What you don't have are clubs to go to to dance or drink. You have all sorts of organizations that get together for activities. Yes there are outdoor activities, but when it gets hot, they change to such things as going up on Cedar Mountain. Or boating which is rather cold to do here in the winter time. There are lots of plays in both Cedar City and St. George. If you want the dancing and drinking, Vegas is just down the road. Coming from the non electronic generation, we use to make our own fun. I still have no problem getting extremely active any time of the year.

The are is great for the outdoors. The people are very freindly and helpful. It's become more diverse ethnically. there is every franchise fast food establishment you can think of except In-out-burger. They were kept out since they wanted to pay their employees a higher wage than the city allows. Yep the city will conrol how much you pay employees here by keeping business out that do not fit their scheme of things. They allowed costco in since the people on the city council got tired of driving to Vegas for costco. There is little real crime, and pollution is here, but not as bad as major cities. Even Cedar has the faint yellow haze on the horizon from the start of smog.

There is a lot of good, and there is bad. You just have to weigh the trade offs. Personally since I moved back from San Francisco area, I would come back here again in a heart beat. It's changed over the years, but it is still better than all the other places we have lived around the country.
Old 08-08-2007, 11:44 AM
Location: Outside Newcastle
281 posts, read 1,076,714 times
Reputation: 115
Default Temecula to Utah

Well Craven your in luck on one points. I too am a native Californian but around here I don't admit it unless asked. One reason being the comment posted from the student in St. George. "Your from Cali so you can probably afford it". That attitude certainly is not uncommon. By the way, I lived in California for 54 years and I've NEVER heard it refered to as "Cali" till' I moved here. You say your from Temecula. If you remember what Temecula/Marrieta was like just 13 years ago, orange groves, and what it's like now you will feel right at home in St. George. But one fundimental issue I hope you and your husband have in order before you move to Utah is employment. The one main reason St.George has grown so fast is baby boomers selling their houses and those that got enough money out of them bought homes in places like St.George. However, unlike places like Temecula where you can commute to Orange County or San Diego county to well paying jobs there is no such thing in Southern Utah. So while some people have posted about the wonderful sing-songie, flowers blooming and family values utopia here. Remember, being spiritual and God-fearing is fine but it won't pay your morgage. Good luck on your house sale.
Old 08-08-2007, 01:27 PM
Location: Outside Newcastle
281 posts, read 1,076,714 times
Reputation: 115
After reading over the posts I thought I'd add a couple more things from my living experiance in Southern Utah that might be of some value to folks moving here. The weather in summer in St.George is about the same as Palm Springs. It is the low desert right next to the border of Arizona. I know it gets hot in Temecula but after a couple summers in St. George you might think Temecula wasn't too bad. And except for the mature landscaping the topography is sagebrush and red rock structures. 47 miles north on 15 is Cedar City. It's a mile higher and while the summer heat is less than that of St. George the winters can be a bit nasty at times. Commonly below 0 at night and days not reaching above freezing for a week with occasional 12-18 inch snowfalls. I think that's why people stop at St. George.
I'm pretty handy with things mechanical and construction and I'm very glad I am after witnessing some things with "contractors". I watched an air conditioning unit being installed to a building I rent retail space in. It was a basic three piece compressor unit, evaporator and fan assemply. It took the guy 8 weeks. I'm not kinding! In the course of trying to find a coolent leak he charged the landlord the cost of buying a leak detector that he didn't already have. Is that an isolated incedent? Sadly, from what I've seen and heard, no. I feel it is indicative of an environment of low wages and opportunities where people of real talent and skill open up shop elsewhere. Crime is very low. But I'm not sure if it's just a result of the low population and nothing to steal rather than the perceived goodness of the people.
Old 08-08-2007, 02:16 PM
6 posts, read 37,123 times
Reputation: 12
HI CravenClan,

It is so funny to read your post because I am in exactly the same boat you are with the thoughts of re locating to the St. George Area. However, we would be coming all the way from Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. My husband and I have a 4 year old and a 1 year old plus a 13 and 14 year from his first marriage. They live in Denver most of the year. I would love to chat with you to see how you are coming along with your decision. My big concerns are like yours -school systems and where to live along with jobs.

My husbands mom lives in Hurricane, so that is how we know about St. George. I love the feel of St. George what I have researched online (though I have only been 2times).

Look forward to hearing from you.
Old 08-08-2007, 05:28 PM
95 posts, read 436,192 times
Reputation: 58
Exclamation CarvenClan

Hello CarvenClan and all other transplants!

We moved her from Pasadena, California in 2004. Just to let you know...you will be getting all sorts of different advise and views as to how is St. George, UT. I could only tell you what I personally have seen and experienced.

We also were tired of the busy hectic life style in Los Angeles including the danger involved in schools, parks and surrounding neighborhoods. We came to ST. George in 2004 several times and decided the best thing to do was make the move. We returned and sold our home in Los Angeles when the market was doing real good. We decided to buy a brand new home from a well known 5 start developer(ENCE) in town. It took 6 months to complete the new house in a nice sub-division. Our teenager was 16 years old at the time and went to Snow Canyon high (which borderline of St. George and Santa Clara).

Okay, for the last 3 years(going on 4yrs) we have realized the most important tool needed for life is having a good paying job with benefits for yourself as well as for your family. In California, most employers provide very good benefits and include your family either for free or a charge. Here in St. George, the wages are extremely low. Please CHECK THE LOCAL NEWSPAPER "THESPECTRUM". You mentioned that you are a stay at home mom to take care of your children. Sounds to me that your husband must be a professional and makes a good decent income in order for you to be able to stay at home mom and not have to work, especially in California.

Here in St. George, Utah the best schools for transplants with children is Dixie High school and Pineview. In 2004, Snow Canyon High was a terrible experiance for my child. The kids would click with their own friends and did not make any attempt to meet my child or get her involved in school projects or want to share lunch time. She often found eating by herself (crying). The after school activities are expense. They do not have funded programs for students. My child could not take it any longer and told us how she felt and become extremely depressed.

Now, let me say that we are hispanic and that might have been a reason for what my child had to go through. We are not LDS, we are christian. There is a chrisitian church that we attend called Calvory Chapel, I'm sure you have heard of it. As for employment, my advise is have your husband look into it before making the move. What does the employer pay and what are the medical benefits provided by the employer. Does the employer pay part of or all the premium of the medical insurance. What does the insurance cover? How about pre-condition elements? The usual waiting period is 12 months for pre-condition unless the insurance policy state otherwise.

I agree that St. George is very pretty and it gives that wonderful old fashion family flare of life but don't be fooled. The grocery markets are just as or even more expensive then what you find in Los Angeles. The gasoline is higher then Los Angeles. There are bars in the bowling center here in town and other local places where the singles get together and party in ST. George. I know of these places because I gotten to know some of our friends are single and non-mormon and are able to find where to go and party. I would say 75% of all resturants have a full bar and menu. There is one state liqueor store in town but you can drive 20-30 minutes to Mesquite, Neveda which is a casino town with entertainment, concerts, dancing and of course gamble and serves drinks all night long. That's where you find most of your LDS members who don't want to be seen drinking and smoking (hiding in Mesquite). There is a stortage of teachers in the whole state of Utah. Here in St. George, you'll find that the education is way behind compared to what California school system offers. The teachers in Utah get paid to start 12.00 per hour and do not have their BA or Masters. There is no summer school, Period! The afterschool programs are not free and there is a charge. There are no child care free programs unless you are getting medicaid. The is a medicaid program for children is offered once a year for open enrollement but it is extremely limited.

Now that said, I know I'm going to get hit from all sides because of this information but I'd rather have you know the truth. Here it's who you know and if your LDS! Please, Please, Please, do your homework. Check out the schools, employment and research the medical benefits. St. George is one of the safest places for parents to raise their family however, there are a lot of drugs sold in schools and really it's up to each family to provide a fun loving home. If your kids are the type to play outdoors and love nature, hike, ATV riding, fishing, hunting then this is the place you may want to live. Have you check Salt Lake? Much better hospitals and employment!

Last edited by The Casselli's; 08-08-2007 at 05:52 PM.. Reason: type o
Old 08-08-2007, 06:14 PM
Location: Small town Texas, from Southern California
445 posts, read 1,601,668 times
Reputation: 79
Blondie-Rabbit, Aerorick, Irish Mama & The Casselli's

Now we are getting somewhere!!!! I am thankful for your posts!!!

I get the whole Cali thing, like Aerorick said...that is my concern, the you can afford it image. Honestly yes we can, and living this rat race lifestyle has given us that opportunity, so here goes the run down for us, (hope i don;t get slammed!)

My husband is self employed, a concrete contractor, and has done extremely well...I stay home, we live in a high end are of Temecula (wine country), We built and sold a high end house 3 years ago, made alot of money and contemplated moving then, and chickened out. We now built an even more expensive house, and it is for sale (unfortuneatley the market has slowed) I drive a new escalade, he now drives a 745 BMW, we have a nice life. BUT we are tired of the hustle...i could care less about an expensive house, i want my kids to know their dad, and in this last 2 years, because of the money we had made on the last house, my husband has been able to be around and have a great relationship with our kids, 4 1/2, 3 and now a baby 5 months.

Temecula, well it sure has changed from 13 years ago, i have lived here for 20!! Now picture, wine vineyards, they are actually ripping up the groves, HUGE traffic, crappy Orange County type people, in one small city!! IT SUCKS!!!

I am fortuneate that i have nice things, but unlike alot of people here, i am not keeping up with the Jones, and i remember where i cam from. When i was 19, i was married, and at 20 had my first baby...needless to say we were divorced 2 years later, we were together from when i was 15, and i remember where i came from. Being a single parent was a hard thing, working fuul time and barely having money to go to the grocery store!! So many people look at me with and "assum", and that is on them. I know who i am and where i came from.

My husband and i are super happy, i have my soul mate, he is my very best friend. We are great people, he is more out going than i am. We do not go to clubs and booze it up, we have kids to take care of. We got to the river, have am occaisonal beer, or vodka-cran, glass of wime, but it is rare!!!!

So i guess, job wise, we are self employed, and we are not expecting to make the money we have made here. Even now with the market, no one is making the money they made a year ago. Since we are self employed, we have group health insurance rates, which are still ridiculous!! $952, a , month for a PPO, we pay an additional 30% of other medical visits.

We do not need free child care/healthcare.

I would be interested if anyone has any more info on GREAT preschools though..

Any thing about healthcare, as far as how it works there?

Can anyone tell me the zip codes for the following housing areas?? River Hollow, Washington Fields, Skyline Meadow Estates?? And any thoughts knowledge of those areas...I need a good size house, atleast 4000 sq. ft (this is where i want to raise my kids, i am tired of moving so much!!)

My reasoning for chickening out before was the LDS thing. I wish now i had found this forum sooner. We have been there a few times, and everyone was friendly. But really you don't know til you are there, i think. Going to Starbucks and having them be nice, doesn't tell you what your neighbors or kids classmates, or gymnastics classes will bring you!!

I just wanted to say i am not the typical californian, i may look it, i may live it, but i am really from a small town that was awesome, and a great place to raise kids, that turned into CRAP!! I am down to earth, my husband comes FIRST in my life, and my family is most important!! To both of us!!

Again, all your input is appreciated.
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