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Old 12-30-2008, 08:58 PM
 
17 posts, read 96,590 times
Reputation: 34

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Hello,
I have been looking into moving to VA from NJ for a few months and have received some feedback through this forum. My needs have changed now. I am pregnant with twins and do not wish to return back to teaching after they are born. My husband will be a nurse in June. Now we are looking for a nice town with a "cute yet thriving" downtown to hopefully help me get my small business off the ground. I sell handmade fine art and crafts (all by me) like handcrafted ceramics pendants and jewelry, crocheted scarves, felted items, paintings, handmade books, etc... If you have ever been to New Hope, PA or Haddonfield, NJ or Cape May, NJ, I guess they are good models for what I am looking for. We will need to be able to purchase a 4 Bed home on a Nurse's salary ($45K?). The small business will just be "extra." Is Roanoke a good choice? Or Chesapeake? I need to know what region to aim for when he starts looking for a job in a year's time. I am open to any suggestions to enhance my search. Thanks!
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:49 PM
 
3,255 posts, read 4,575,434 times
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I have not come across a Cape May or New Hope area in southern VA, Manasas is close to the model you are looking for. Roanoke has an old market square type complex that you might want to look into. Charlottsville maybe? I do not think Chesepeake is what you are looking for. Portsmouth has a cute downtown, but I am not sure about what neighborhoods there are. The beach area of VB is devoid of cuteness, but you may find a market in the tourist trade. Good luck. I have loved New Hope since the 60s.
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Old 12-31-2008, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Apex, NC
1,341 posts, read 5,632,319 times
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Yes, I would certainly consider Roanoke! There are downtown spaces available and Roanoke's city center gets good afternoon and weekend foot traffic. Roanoke's downtown is at the beginning of an upward revitalization curve so costs would be lower relative to other metro alternatives.

Housing on a nurse's salary would be just fine. A friend of mine recently bought a cute 2 bedroom house for $95K in what I'd consider to be a safe working class neighborhood (Grandin Village / Berkeley).

The brand new Taubman Museum of Art is a huge new draw for Roanokers and visiting tourists, and it's downtown location is a boon to local shops. Plus you have the Center on the Square and it's bustling year round Downtown Roanoke Inc. - Roanoke City Market and lots of surrounding retail spaces in 80 year old buildings with tall tin-stamped ceilings. Visit downtown Roanoke on a weekday or Saturday afternoon and check it out!

Sean
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Old 01-15-2009, 03:35 PM
 
Location: Charlottesville, VA
31 posts, read 105,731 times
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I suggest you check out Charlottesville. Yes it is little more expensive than Roanoke but certainly worth the higher cost. Especially now, you can find affordable housing here too. Prices of detached 4br homes start at $179,000, and 4 br condos at $142,000. Charlottesville Downtown Mall features many small businesses and is much more than "just cute" You will find the proximity of two great hospitals practical too.
Best of luck,Tanja
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Chesterfield, VA
1,218 posts, read 4,553,095 times
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Two other areas to check as to the business, would be Fredericksburg (old town) and also Petersburg. My guess is Petersburg would be cheaper on unit rent. As to cost of living, both would be possible in the surrounding counties and then leave you a 20-25 minute drive into work.
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:43 PM
 
870 posts, read 1,707,936 times
Reputation: 400
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanja M View Post
I suggest you check out Charlottesville. Yes it is little more expensive than Roanoke but certainly worth the higher cost. Especially now, you can find affordable housing here too. Prices of detached 4br homes start at $179,000, and 4 br condos at $142,000. Charlottesville Downtown Mall features many small businesses and is much more than "just cute" You will find the proximity of two great hospitals practical too.
Best of luck,Tanja
I doubt if the owners of the FOUR galleries that have closed in Cville would say that the cost is worth it. You get a lot more bang for your buck in Roanoke, health care is just about equal that of Cville, and there is a great arts scene in Roanoke. While the downtown mall in Cville is "cute," it is also having a hard time keeping businesses. Roanoke's downtown is a true working downtown with a mix of everything from museums to regional bank HQs to great eateries... and a wonderful farmers market right in the center.
Lest you think I'm biased, I live about an hour from both.
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