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Old 08-03-2006, 12:46 PM
 
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
2 posts, read 22,131 times
Reputation: 13

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hi, My boyfriend and I are moving to WA , in about a month or so, the thing is that neither of us has ever been there!!
I have 2 kids, so any info about schools or daycares would be great! I also want to know everything there is to know about lacey or Olympia, my boyfriend is going to work in lacey, but I've heard that Olympia is pretty close. How about the cost of living? we are going to rent, is it too expensive?...we come from fort lauderdale, FL
Any advise would be greatly appreciated!!
Thanks,
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Old 08-05-2006, 10:40 PM
 
Location: Bothell, Washington
449 posts, read 71,350 times
Reputation: 187
paloma,

Lacey and Olympia are basically one in the same. Not sure if anybody even knows where the boundaries are.

I can't help much with the school/daycare issues, I am sure the cost varries for daycare just like it does in Ft. Lauderdale. You can go here http://www.relocate-america.com/states/WA/ (broken link) to see what they say about Olympia. It is one of the best places to live.

Down side? Weather. If you have never done Washington, you need to get prepared. Take a cold shower, wear a baseball cap and don't look up. That's what it feels like in February, if you haven't been here before. Most people who come in the summer fall in love with what we have to offer. Then winter hits and you are cold and damp all the time (so it seems) We had a period last January where it rained every day for almost a month.

After the first winter and you have established a layer of rust, you find that it is more beautiful than ever, especially when there is blue sky and warm weather, and the next winter just does not seem as bad.

Watch out. That means you are hooked. Or not. Some can't handle it, and they leave.

Either way, welcome, for a day or lifetime.

The dufferz
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Old 08-07-2006, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
2 posts, read 22,131 times
Reputation: 13
Default Thanks!

Thanks, dufferz...and don't worry I'm sure I'm going to love the weather....
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Old 09-16-2006, 10:34 PM
 
1 posts, read 11,061 times
Reputation: 11
Default Relocating to Olympia

Hey. Moving to the Olympia area from the east coast. Can anyone give me a heads up on great areas to live with good schools, neighborhoods, etc.?
I've heard great things about the Olympia school district - especially Olympia high school. But also would like to know about the community ---
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Old 09-19-2006, 02:10 PM
DBM
 
87 posts, read 286,172 times
Reputation: 114
Default Lucky you

Olympia is a really nice small city and you're lucky to be relocating there. I grew up there, and have lived there as an adult (I'm currently living elsewhere). Here's some info on schools and areas to live.

There are three school districts in the area: Olympia, Tumwater, and North Thurston. Test scores and the general sense is that Olympia is the strongest, Tumwater a stron second, and North Thurston lagging a bit. North Thurston has faced a constant problem of high student turnover -- it's the closest district to both Fort Lewis, so the student population has historically been more transient. There are a ton of nice new homes that have been built in the North Thurston District during the latest building boom, so I expect that the district will be improving moving forward.

Areas to live depend largely on what you're looking for and how much money you have to spend on housing. As a global statement, if you want a new home and don't mind "house farms," there is so much new construction out there that you'll have your pick. Here are some more specifics, though. If you're into traditional neighborhoods with older, craftsman-style homes, then you are llargely imited to the South Capitol neighborhood, the Carlyon neighborhood, or small pockets of older homes in the near Westside or NE Oly. South Capitol is a historic district and many homes are on various historic registers, but you will pay a bit more. South Carlyon has the same housing stock at lower prices, but the neighborhood is a bit less cohesive. Other traditional neighborhoods that I would recommend are in SE Olympia near Olympia High School, some of the Tumwater neighborhoods, and a variety of neighborhoods along Cooper Point Road.

If you're looking for waterfront, Cooper Point is nice, as is Steamboat Island Road (that area is served by Griffin School District, which is great -- but it only goes K-8, then the kids go to Capital High in the Oly district -- there is constant talk that Griffin will someday get its own high school, which would be smaller and probably excellent). If you want acreage, then you have tons of options, particularly in the area south of Tumwater. It's undergone tremendous growth, with some real high-end stuff.

This is a bit rambling, but hope it helps. I'll check back later to see if you have any follow-up questions.

The most desireable real estate, not surprisingly, is along the water. You'll have to spend somewhere above 600K to get something out there.
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Old 09-19-2006, 02:13 PM
DBM
 
87 posts, read 286,172 times
Reputation: 114
Default Lucky you

Olympia is a really nice small city and you're lucky to be relocating there. I grew up there, and have lived there as an adult (I'm currently living elsewhere). Here's some info on schools and areas to live.

There are three school districts in the area: Olympia, Tumwater, and North Thurston. Test scores and the general sense is that Olympia is the best, Tumwater a strong second, and North Thurston lagging a bit. North Thurston has faced a constant problem of high student turnover -- it's the closest district to both Fort Lewis, so the student population has historically been more transient. There are a ton of nice new homes that have been built in the North Thurston District during the latest building boom, so I expect that the district will be improving moving forward.

Areas to live depend largely on what you're looking for and how much money you have to spend on housing. As a global statement, if you want a new home and don't mind "house farms," there is so much new construction out there that you'll have your pick. Here are some more specifics, though. If you're into traditional neighborhoods with older, craftsman-style homes, then you are largely imited to the South Capitol neighborhood, the Carlyon neighborhood, or small pockets of older homes in the near Westside or NE Oly. South Capitol is a historic district and many homes are on various historic registers, but you will pay a bit more. South Carlyon has the same housing stock at lower prices, but the neighborhood is a bit less cohesive. Other traditional neighborhoods that I would recommend are in SE Olympia near Olympia High School, some of the Tumwater neighborhoods, and a variety of neighborhoods along Cooper Point Road.

If you're looking for waterfront, Cooper Point is nice, as is Steamboat Island Road (that area is served by Griffin School District, which is great -- but it only goes K-8, then the kids go to Capital High in the Oly district -- there is constant talk that Griffin will someday get its own high school, which would be smaller and probably excellent). You'll have to spend somewhere above 600K to get something fairly nice on the water. If you want acreage, then you have tons of options, particularly in the area south of Tumwater. It's undergone tremendous growth, with some real high-end stuff.

This is a bit rambling, but hope it helps. I'll check back later to see if you have any follow-up questions.
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Old 09-21-2006, 12:17 AM
 
Location: Olympia, WA
19 posts, read 101,712 times
Reputation: 18
Just a few things about cost of living. It is cheaper than Seattle, but still more expensive than many cities/towns in Western WA. You will find a one bedroom on average between 600-750. Olympia is a charming little town in the downtown area. During the summer, take a walk on along the boardwalk and nothing is more beautiful! It is a very eclectic. Lacey on the other hand, well nothing special. It has all of your necessary shopping areas etc. Olympia is probably the more intersting place to live, but like the previous person said, they meld together into one big city.

Best of luck.
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Old 10-19-2006, 05:34 PM
 
7 posts, read 30,592 times
Reputation: 11
Default "Bad" neighborhoods?

Are there any areas you should steer clear of in Olympia/Lacey/Tumwater? I had a very short visit to the area recently and didn't see anything scary while I was there, but I was told by someone that Tumwater was a higher crime area. Is this true? BTW - absolutely beautiful place!
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Old 10-19-2006, 06:38 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara
627 posts, read 2,061,732 times
Reputation: 394
Quote:
dufferz posted: Down side? Weather. If you have never done Washington, you need to get prepared. Take a cold shower, wear a baseball cap and don't look up. That's what it feels like in February, if you haven't been here before. Most people who come in the summer fall in love with what we have to offer. Then winter hits and you are cold and damp all the time (so it seems) We had a period last January where it rained every day for almost a month.

After the first winter and you have established a layer of rust, you find that it is more beautiful than ever, especially when there is blue sky and warm weather, and the next winter just does not seem as bad.

Watch out. That means you are hooked. Or not. Some can't handle it, and they leave.

Either way, welcome, for a day or lifetime.

The dufferz
This is beautifully described and worded. I must concur with his description. The first year I was always cold (damp cold). But when I was hooked, it changed everything from how I wore my hair to how I viewed the world. Interesting shift, especially now that I have moved and live in the sun 24/7 practically. I actually have a sun allergy now (diagnosed and legitimate!) if you can believe it. Go figure. Me thinks my body misses the rain and gray. Best of luck with the adjustment. Olympia is a neat little community. I went to college there.
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Old 10-20-2006, 08:08 PM
DBM
 
87 posts, read 286,172 times
Reputation: 114
becylou,

There are some neighborhoods that are preferable to others (see my post above), but for the most part this region is "wysiwyg" (what you see is what you get). The run-down neighborhoods are worse than the well-kept neighborhoods, etc. As far as entire areas to avoid, I would say stear clear of Lacey too near Pacific Avenue or Martin Way, a few apartment complexes in Tumwater near the freeway, and a few of the blocks in Olympia's northeast and northwest filled with run-down 40's and 50's houses. All of these areas are fairly close to perfectly fine areas, so you'll have to ask your realtor or the locals when you're there. Good luck.
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