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Old 05-20-2011, 12:32 PM
 
4 posts, read 4,878 times
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First, let me start by saying I have browsed the Charlotte forum extensively, reading relevant topics well into the 50th page. Some of my questions have been answered, but many haven't.
I have an option to relocate from Boston to Charlotte with my current company. The job is not an issue, and I would maintain my current salary.
I would be moving with my wife, 1 year old daughter, and small dog (beagle). The job would be in Ballantyne. My current drive to work takes an hour, so a half hour to 45 minute drive wouldn't bug me. My wife is a tax accountant with 4+ years of corporate experience, and does not have a job prospect, but we could live off my salary if needed (at least temporarily). Her intention would be to return to work ASAP. In addition, we have already saved up quite a bit for a down payment on a house, so we do have an "emergency" fund.
We would be looking to rent either a townhouse or a house initially (for a year or so), while we research homes. An apartment is a very last option, but we'd prefer not to be in an apartment situation.
My wife and I are very low key. We do not seek out night life, and don't really care about being in a city, although proximity to one is nice. Given the age of our daughter, school selection is not an immediate need, but an excellent daycare would be. We want a safe, family-oriented, neighborhood with access to local shops and stores. We are currently looking at areas in South Charlotte (Ballantyne, Pineville, Matthews, etc.) but we are not averse to Fort Mill, SC, or the areas local to it, especially for the lower taxes and other costs.
Our current mortgage payment is $1,300, and I'd like our rent to be less. Preferably between $850-$1,200.
I would appreciate ideas and thoughts about different areas, and if possible, that you would include the general costs associated with the area (utilities, HOA fees, etc.).
Plain and simple, we are looking at houses here in MA, and for $300,000-$350,000 we just aren't going to be happy with what we get. We are actually visiting for the weekend next week (27th-29th) to get a general feel for the areas, and would like to narrow the field down a bit. I know, we chose the busiest weekend with the nascar stuff going on. Contact info for a good local real estate agent who would donate 3 hours or so to show us a few available rentals/houses would be great too.
Sorry for the verbal diarrhea, but I'd prefer to give enough info to help you narrow your answers down. Thanks a ton. - Alex
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:07 PM
 
Location: Union County
6,002 posts, read 9,224,281 times
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I'm really surprised by your current payment of $1,300 in the Boston metro... wow.

I would suggest that you concentrate your early search in the Ballantyne area for proximity to work and it should offer everything you're looking for except you might have to get into an apartment for your price range.
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:15 PM
 
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Sorry about that, we don't actually live in Boston currently. I grew up there, but we moved a little further west into the burbs 4 years ago to buy a smaller and cheaper place. Our mortgage payment is ~$650, but the HOA fee is another $570 on top of that (covers water, sewer, and taxes). But now we've outgrown it, and are looking to move into a bigger place. Since my commute is already an hour, we can't move any further west to where places are cheaper. A $250-300k property in Charlotte (I have looked at tons on zillow in nice neighborhoods) is comparable to properties near me that sell for $550-650k. Does that help at all? And thanks for the reply.
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:25 PM
 
716 posts, read 1,444,206 times
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If your paying on a mortgage I would seriously consider moving into an apartment and continue to save until you have enough cash to buy a home. You can probably find a decent apartment for around 600-700 a month but they usually jack the rates up after a year.
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:30 PM
 
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We currently own a home in MA, but only owe $62k. We can and would sell our current place before the move. We would be planning on renting down there at first so we can get a handle on the local areas before we chose a place to buy.
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:32 PM
 
Location: Union County
6,002 posts, read 9,224,281 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex1980Boston View Post
Sorry about that, we don't actually live in Boston currently. I grew up there, but we moved a little further west into the burbs 4 years ago to buy a smaller and cheaper place. Our mortgage payment is ~$650, but the HOA fee is another $570 on top of that (covers water, sewer, and taxes). But now we've outgrown it, and are looking to move into a bigger place. Since my commute is already an hour, we can't move any further west to where places are cheaper. A $250-300k property in Charlotte (I have looked at tons on zillow in nice neighborhoods) is comparable to properties near me that sell for $550-650k. Does that help at all? And thanks for the reply.
It does... If your willing to move into the "burbs" and extend your commute a bit, I would suggest that you still look in Ballantyne for rentals but also look in Union County where you can find many options within 20-30 minutes of Ballantyne. This includes parts of Matthews, Indian Trail, Marvin, Weddington, and Waxhaw. Fort Mill SC is very doable as well.

For a buy you'll have tons of options at $300k in all those towns with good schools, but you will struggle to find a rental house for under $1k.

Starting out in Balantyne in an apartment while you get to know the area is probably your best option IMO. Ballantyne has pretty much everything you'd want / need - with the kicker being where you work.
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:20 PM
 
Location: South CLT
286 posts, read 650,095 times
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I agree with Ballantyne - I live in the area renting an apartment too - Ballantyne has everything you desire. For a decent two bedroom you are looking at around at $1K a month - less if a special is going on.
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Old 05-20-2011, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Up above the world so high!
45,246 posts, read 94,999,871 times
Reputation: 40098
Alex, I wrote you a direct message with some info, but apparently you have not activated the dm feature on your acct. If you do that I will be happy to resend
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Old 05-21-2011, 03:39 PM
 
4 posts, read 4,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovesMountains View Post
Alex, I wrote you a direct message with some info, but apparently you have not activated the dm feature on your acct. If you do that I will be happy to resend
Sorry about that. I have enabled direct messaging. Thank you!
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Old 05-21-2011, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
1,969 posts, read 3,346,755 times
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One thing that I would strongly recommend doing is going over a list of what amenities you enjoy in Mass. and see if they are available in this area. It's good to know what you would be giving up, and if you would be OK with it
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