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Old 02-18-2013, 01:13 PM
 
17 posts, read 23,577 times
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Hi all,

I got great input when I posted here a year ago... my JHU-Homewood guy and I have really enjoyed living in Otterbein, but we're now looking to buy and want more space and a (real) yard for our dog, and unfortunately we're nowhere near being able to afford that in Otterbein.

Because he's still at JHU-Homewood and I still commute down to Laurel, we're trying to figure out the right neighborhoods to look at to each keep ~30 minute commutes (he's caving and getting a car). So far we've picked out Catonsville, Arbutus, and Linthicum as possibilities. There are some really tempting deals just inside the city line near route 40, specifically Ten Hills, West Hills, Edmondson... these tend to come at a lower price and have more land than SFHs in the county. Any reason we should be concerned about these areas? I drove around Chapel Gate Ln earlier today and no red flags popped up, but I'm pretty new to this.

We don't have kids so it's really whether this will be a nice place to live for 5-10 years for a couple of young professionals with 1-2 dogs. I noticed the Bozzuto development on rte 40 in Uplands, do you think that will have a positive or negative impact on the area?

Thanks in advance for your help!
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Old 02-18-2013, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Cheswolde
1,977 posts, read 6,232,589 times
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Default My 2cents

Uplands should have a positive effect on all the neighborhoods you are interested in, plus Academy Heights. I'd also look at Hunting Ridge. Well-built single-family homes adjoining Leakin Park, where there are trails, etc.
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Old 02-18-2013, 01:57 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
31,413 posts, read 70,056,849 times
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Originally Posted by teamkj View Post
There are some really tempting deals just inside the city line near route 40...
Any reason we should be concerned about these areas?
Schools and resale.

Even if you don't have kids in school yourselves (yet or ever)... they still matter.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:02 PM
 
Location: Bolton Hill
805 posts, read 1,910,050 times
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taxes are cheaper in Baltimore county so that matters a lot.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:18 PM
 
17 posts, read 23,577 times
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Thanks all!

We are aware of the tax issue but some of the city options are still financially more attractive because of the price and lot size. (The taxes are ultimately the factor making Otterbein impossible to consider.) I'll have to look into how much schools impact resale and consider when we may be wanting to move on. Right now I'm mostly wondering if the safety, quality of living, and community/neighborhood feeling are significantly different from Catonsville a few intersections away?

We'll take a look at Hunting Ridge... my guy is a long-distance runner so being near trails is always a plus.

Keep the opinions coming, thanks! Also, any other neighborhoods worth looking at, county or city? I have a friend in Brooklyn but I think Otterbein has made us too soft for that...
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,930 posts, read 21,980,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamkj View Post
I noticed the Bozzuto development on rte 40 in Uplands, do you think that will have a positive or negative impact on the area?
Positive, heck yes. It replaced a run-down public housing project. I notice the ads feature multi-ethnic families and couples. I lived nearby in Edmundson Heights, and was not afraid of walking around the area. Ten Hills is a lovely, unique area. Just be away that city taxes and schools have a depressing effect. Hunting Ridge is similar, but very few houses turn over. The proximity to SSA keeps housing values fairly strong, IMO. Catonsville is also nice and has townhouses priced much less than the SFH's in Ten Hills.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,930 posts, read 21,980,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamkj View Post
Also, any other neighborhoods worth looking at, county or city?
What's your budget? Do you want a SFH or townhouse? Dickeyville just north of Leakin Park is a little hidden jewel with historic houses dating back to 1810.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,930 posts, read 21,980,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamkj View Post
Right now I'm mostly wondering if the safety, quality of living, and community/neighborhood feeling are significantly different from Catonsville a few intersections away?
To me, the areas on both sides of the line are very similar. However, one friend who lived on Medwick Garth, which straddles the line, reported that the County side of the street was plowed after a snowstorm, while the City side remained unplowed.
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Old 02-18-2013, 03:29 PM
 
17 posts, read 23,577 times
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Yeah, when driving with friends into the city on route 40, I always announce when we've entered Baltimore City because the road quality INSTANTLY changes. I was a little concerned about the neighborhoods for this reason-- but the areas I explored in Ten Hills today seemed to be pretty well-maintained. Maybe I'm a sucker but I've enjoyed living in Baltimore and had positive interactions with local officials, so I don't mind continuing to put my middle-class tax dollars toward the city.

We are looking at doing a $200-250k house on a 15 year mortgage, or a $300-350k house on a 30-year mortgage. To spend more than $300k, we think the house should be "longer-term" (decent school possibilities and/or no renovations/updates required). I think we've ruled out townhouses because we're really itching for a real yard.

Keep the advice coming!
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,930 posts, read 21,980,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamkj View Post
We are looking at doing a $200-250k house on a 15 year mortgage, or a $300-350k house on a 30-year mortgage.
I don't know your taste in houses, but I saw a cute 50's bungalow on Pickwick Road in Dickeyville. The price was $238K. It had a good yard, but the interior needed updating.
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