U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Illinois > Chicago Suburbs
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 02-19-2009, 09:35 AM
 
369 posts, read 554,450 times
Reputation: 271

Advertisements

We currently live in the St. Charles area, but my DH is considering job opportunities in the Vernon Hills/Libertyville area. I'm going to take a drive up to the area in the next couple of days, but would appreciate some insights into the area. I would especially like to hear how the areas I listed compare to the St. Charles area. I grew up in this area (my parents still live here) and we moved back shortly before starting our family, so the idea of moving is not being taken lightly.

We currently live in a 4 br./2.5 bath home that is just under 3000 sq. ft. I need the 4 bedrooms, but would be willing to give up square footage with the right layout. Our price limit would probably be $500,000. I would prefer to keep it in the 400,000s.

Here are our list of priorities/wish list:

1. Good schools (of course!)

2. Safe

3. Friendly/unpretentious community that is family oriented with other down to earth, stay at home moms.

4. I currently live in an area where I can walk to shopping, restaurants, schools, etc. and really love that. I can give this up, if I need to, but it is one of my favorite aspects of where I currently live.

Thanks for your help.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-19-2009, 10:16 AM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,240,392 times
Reputation: 18535
The data from USNews suggests that the high schools in Libertyville. Vernon Hills and Buffalo Grove are the best on your list, better even than those you'd be leaving behind.
Best High Schools Search - US News and World Report
Best High Schools Search - US News and World Report

Personally, having spent a lot of time in and around St. Charles, the town with the most similarities is almost certainly Libertyville. You might be able to make a "horizontal move" in price /size, but I suspect that your 2.5 baths might not fetch quite as much as you'd like in this market, and you may have to widen your net a bit to find something that is acceptable as far as age / condition in Libertyville, given that demand is pretty strong there. (One factor is that near by Abbot Labs has been pretty strong in this economy, on the problems with Motorola hit Libertyville a long time ago...)

Your money might go farther in Lake Zurich, but that is not a sure thing, nor is the lay out the town as likely to have as many homes that are walkable to as many things as St. Charles. The other towns you listed have even less walkable development...
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2009, 10:31 AM
 
Location: Chicagoland
5,724 posts, read 9,242,993 times
Reputation: 6923
I've lived/worked in these areas and will offer a quick, off the top-of-my head opinion (disclaimer for those who will challenge my school opinion - CHET ) of these areas.

All are probably "better-performing" school districts though Stevenson (parts of Buffalo Grove) jumps to the top of the list as one of the premier districts in IL. Libertyville and Vernon Hills are also strong. Vernon Hills has a smaller H.S. and many prefer this. Lake Zurich H.S. may not have as high test scores/AP courses as the others but IMO is still well-regarded. Have heard that Lake Zurich has implemented a good gifted/differentiated program in the elem. schools and has a strong superintendent so this district may be on the rise. There are lots of sources out there for more info on these school districts.

I'd say, of your choices, Libertyville has the best downtown w/some unique boutique shops, parks and restaurants and easy walkability to schools, shopping, etc. Vernon Hills has a big mall, many strip malls, industrial parks, chain restaurants. Buffalo Grove is also spread out w/lots of strip malls/industrial parks but there are some great restaurants off of Milwaukee in nearby Wheeling. Lake Zurich has some nice parks, a small downtown on the lake, and lots of strip malls/big box stores on Rt. 14.

If I had the choice, I'd probably move to Libertyville as it has good schools and, like St. Charles, has a charming, walkable downtown area w/nice shops, parks, restaurants...

Hope this helps...
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2009, 10:43 AM
 
369 posts, read 554,450 times
Reputation: 271
Thanks so much! After posting, I started checking out Libertyville a little more (I had already looked at real estate postings and school ratings for the other towns) and am initially impressed. On the con side, Libertyville is the furthest on my list from St. Charles.

What is the family culture like in Libertyville? Are there a lot of stay at home moms or is it more of a dual family working community?

I'm actually just about to pack up my kids, pick up my mother, and head on up to the area to check it out on this lovely cold day.

Thanks again!!!
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2009, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Chicagoland
5,724 posts, read 9,242,993 times
Reputation: 6923
Quote:
Originally Posted by AMJ27 View Post
What is the family culture like in Libertyville? Are there a lot of stay at home moms or is it more of a dual family working community?
That's really hard to say... I've had lunch w/some stay-at-home moms there and have always seen lots of moms/tots in the nearby parks. They rave about the park district/pools. I also know lots of moms that work at nearby Abbott. I'd say the town has a good mix of both. Though with this economy, we may start to see a lot more stay-at-home moms (and dads)!

Have fun in Libertyville today. There's a great cookware shop/cooking school, gourmet cheese/wine tasting shop, charming antique shops, and an inspirational shop/bookstore/tea peddler for women/moms (I think it's called Inspirational Moments or something like that, I can't remember). As you can tell, I wish I could go there shopping today!
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-19-2009, 07:48 PM
 
101 posts, read 399,497 times
Reputation: 51
Buffalo Grove is the most family oriented neighborhood out of all of the suburbs mentioned. The elementary schools thru high school are very highly rated. The park district has tons of activites and is well known throughout the Chicago area. People from other suburbs pay extra to use our park district. No downtown to walk about but plenty of places within driving distance. Homes range in the upper limit of your preference but resell is excellent.
Emmie
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2009, 09:02 AM
 
4,723 posts, read 14,423,440 times
Reputation: 4764
Quote:
Originally Posted by emmie3g View Post
Buffalo Grove is the most family oriented neighborhood out of all of the suburbs mentioned. The elementary schools thru high school are very highly rated. The park district has tons of activites and is well known throughout the Chicago area. People from other suburbs pay extra to use our park district. No downtown to walk about but plenty of places within driving distance. Homes range in the upper limit of your preference but resell is excellent.
Emmie
I dont know how it is "THE MOST FAMILY ORIENTED NEIGHBORHOOD">I think that is most certainly a matter of opinion. BG is strip malls and sub divisions which many families do not find all that appealing. No nice village/downtown, horrendous traffic and tons of burbs have park districts with tons of activities. Good schools can be found in all the ops pick towns. When I think of a family area, L'ville is probably most similar to St Charles.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2009, 01:47 PM
 
47 posts, read 176,359 times
Reputation: 32
I concur re Libertyville. Cute downtown, nice parks (Adler Park and Independence Grove come to mind), diverse real estate options, family-oriented and excellent school system.

I am certainly biased having grown up there, but would recommend the community to anyone.

Only negatives I can think of: (1) farthest from St. Charles, and (2) probably the WASPiest of the towns you mentioned, but even that's changed in the last 10 years or so (BG and VH have been historically more diverse). Lake Zurich, although a nice town, is generally not as sought after as the other 3 towns.

Also note that some parts of BG go to BG high school and other parts go to Stevenson. Vernon Hills also has some areas that send kids to Stevenson.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2009, 02:14 PM
 
4,723 posts, read 14,423,440 times
Reputation: 4764
"Only negatives I can think of: (1) farthest from St. Charles, and (2) probably the WASPiest of the towns you mentioned, but even that's changed in the last 10 years or so (BG and VH have been historically more diverse). Lake Zurich, although a nice town, is generally not as sought after as the other 3 towns."

I dont agree with this statement.. I may be wrong but I dont think BG or VH have ever been "Historically diverse">!! I may be wrong on this. If its so, its news to me and I stand corrected. LZ has always been sought after for many families in the 20 years I have lived in the area.
And what does "the waspiest town" mean?
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-20-2009, 04:29 PM
 
5,870 posts, read 11,517,602 times
Reputation: 4551
I think the "historical diversity" of Buffalo Grove and Vernon Hills refers to the Jewish population that have been there for at least 30 years, and to a lesser extent some Asians. However, I don't think it makes those two places considerably more "diverse" than Libertyville. Certain ethnic groups simply are attracted to an area with inexpensive cookie-cutter homes and care more about schools that will make their kids competitive in the white collared job market later and not as interested in having a quaint downtown.

I grew up in Buffalo Grove and I find it to be geographically sterile and "rat-racy." I personally much prefer Libertyvilles hometown feel.

BTW: Lake Zurichs chain strip is off Rt. 12, not Rt. 14
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Illinois > Chicago Suburbs

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2021, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top