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Old 01-07-2009, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Bay Area
2,406 posts, read 6,963,974 times
Reputation: 1852

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I would definitely suggest moving here first. We visited 3-4 times, but after moving and living here for 6 months I wish we had moved before purchasing. I don't know how we would have done it, with furniture, animals, kid etc, and my husband is anti-renting but there must be nice corporate short term rentals in the area.
Your perception of the area, the traffic, the commute, etc will change after living here a few months. Its just really hard to do from across the country or on the internet, regardless the amount of research you do, to really get a good feel of the area in just a few short trips. We love the area, but after the husband and daughter both switching locations a month after moving here, we realize its best to move then buy!
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:09 AM
 
93 posts, read 222,141 times
Reputation: 59
That's what we've decided to do. We'll begin our lease in March. I just hope we don't miss the boat on the low housing prices these days, since we will be renting for a year.

So how have things turned out for you? Where did you decide to live? What do you know now that you wish you had known then? Details please.
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:24 AM
 
Location: Clearwater, FL
108 posts, read 273,097 times
Reputation: 79
This is so true, and not only in terms of buying a house. You simply cannot get the right impression of a city by visiting that you would get by actually living there for a few months.

And as far as housing prices go, many of the experts in real estate do not expect the market to bottom out for at least another year. That is especially true for this area, as some properties just seem to be ridiculously overpriced even after they've been on the market for a very long time.
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Old 01-21-2009, 05:52 AM
 
1 posts, read 2,343 times
Reputation: 10
I have 3 girls in a french school(elementary and middle) and I am moving to tampa soon .Did you find any good schools????

thank you
worried mom
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Old 01-21-2009, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
807 posts, read 2,820,773 times
Reputation: 701
As a suggestion...to get by the furniture moving, you can rent a 'vacation rental' property with a 7 month lease at a surprising rate. Those properties are fully furnished so you could put your things in storage or even sell it if you choose. Then when you buy a home, furnish it with all new things!
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Old 01-23-2009, 12:10 PM
 
425 posts, read 1,087,989 times
Reputation: 253
Quote:
Originally Posted by On-da-Beach View Post
As a suggestion...to get by the furniture moving, you can rent a 'vacation rental' property with a 7 month lease at a surprising rate. Those properties are fully furnished so you could put your things in storage or even sell it if you choose. Then when you buy a home, furnish it with all new things!
Will these types of properties sometimes do month-to-month? I don't really see how you can sign any type of lease while you are looking for a house... I mean, maybe you'll find a place you want to buy tomorrow but maybe it will be 3 months from now. Having a rigid number of months in a lease seems to really tie your hands when house shopping.

I'm sure other people have had this problem?
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Old 01-23-2009, 12:32 PM
 
Location: Tampa Bay
158 posts, read 450,053 times
Reputation: 108
I personally highly recommend renting before purchasing if new to the area unless you know you'll be tied to a specific area(i.e., because of job location or whatever).

The Bay area is extremely vast and there are a lot of nice communities tucked away in areas that maybe hard to find on initial visits to the area. Best thing to do is rent short-term(6-9 months?) in a centralized location and just explore the area looking for affordable and desireable communities with easy access to work, amenities and entertainment. This is what we did when we first moved here a while back, although we rented for a couple of years before settling on a house.

The economy will take AT LEAST 6-9 months to even begin to turnaround and most project well into 2010 and the housing inventory in the area is incredibly high so a renting for while wouldn't be a bad ideal. That will give you time to look around and worst case scenario, if you find a house you want, just terminate your lease early and forfeit your deposit or a month's rent. Also consider looking into foreclosures or homes about to enter foreclosure. Lot's of great deals out there if you're buying...
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Old 01-23-2009, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
807 posts, read 2,820,773 times
Reputation: 701
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjax1000 View Post
Will these types of properties sometimes do month-to-month? I don't really see how you can sign any type of lease while you are looking for a house... I mean, maybe you'll find a place you want to buy tomorrow but maybe it will be 3 months from now. Having a rigid number of months in a lease seems to really tie your hands when house shopping.

I'm sure other people have had this problem?
Oh yes, you can do a month to month but it costs much more since it changes the tax structure for the property owner. Any rental over 6 months is considered long term for tax purposes.
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Old 01-25-2009, 06:11 AM
 
Location: South Tampa
99 posts, read 332,451 times
Reputation: 52
Definitely rent before you own! Many people come down here and are excited about starting a new life to find out that the dream is not exactly what they thought it was.

In this day and age you negotiate rent and lease length with most rentals. Vacation rentals may offer you a great way to try out a place. Dont let the rose color glasses fool you...you may find that after moving to St. Pete, that Tampa is more your style or vice versa.
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Old 01-26-2009, 09:06 PM
 
8 posts, read 31,219 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by DC2Tampa View Post
I personally highly recommend renting before purchasing if new to the area unless you know you'll be tied to a specific area(i.e., because of job location or whatever).

The Bay area is extremely vast and there are a lot of nice communities tucked away in areas that maybe hard to find on initial visits to the area. Best thing to do is rent short-term(6-9 months?) in a centralized location and just explore the area looking for affordable and desireable communities with easy access to work, amenities and entertainment. This is what we did when we first moved here a while back, although we rented for a couple of years before settling on a house.

The economy will take AT LEAST 6-9 months to even begin to turnaround and most project well into 2010 and the housing inventory in the area is incredibly high so a renting for while wouldn't be a bad ideal. That will give you time to look around and worst case scenario, if you find a house you want, just terminate your lease early and forfeit your deposit or a month's rent. Also consider looking into foreclosures or homes about to enter foreclosure. Lot's of great deals out there if you're buying...
We are planning to move from DC (NOVA) to Tampa as well. How has your experience been. We have been warned that life is much slower, there are are not as many restaurants or shopping malls, but we are prepared to give that up for warm weather and the beach.
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