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Old 05-09-2017, 11:21 AM
7 posts, read 8,194 times
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I am looking to relocate from the Harrisburg, PA area and am working my way through visiting a list of potential cities. I have already lived in or visited the following cities, but none of them really did it for me enough to be excited to stay and/or pack my bags and go:

Arlington (VA) – great crowd of young professionals and close to DC nightlife and history, but way too expensive, I HATED the traffic and prefer warmer weather.
Denver – great mixture of urban and outdoors feel, but while I love the mountains, I would miss having access to the ocean and don’t want to deal with cold temps and snow.
Charlotte – felt clean and was not overwhelming (hustle bustle), but just felt somewhat bland and might get bored quickly without the close proximity to the mountains or the beach.
Pittsburgh – Cool neighborhoods, fun bars, and I already have friends there, but I’m looking for a cleaner feeling city and want to escape Pennsylvania winters.

Still to be visited are Charleston (SC), Atlanta, Jacksonville (FL), and Tampa (open to other suggestions as well). Ideal city for me would have the following:

Mild/No winter
Young professional crowd (friends and dating pool)
Urban feel (skyline, walkable neighborhood/dining/bar/shopping areas)
Parks/Green space
Access to outdoors recreation (running, hiking, kayaking, beach, etc.)
Affordable (i.e. 1bd/1ba apartment in the $1200/mo range)

I’m a 26 year old single (straight) male. I have a B.S. Finance and 4 years of experience as a Financial Analyst. I like to maintain a healthy lifestyle by running (scenic routes would be great!), lifting weights, hiking, and eating natural foods. I’m a very laid back person and prefer to be in a place that caters to that type of life. My 2 year old Belgian Malinois will be accompanying me, so it would be great to be in a dog-friendly area with enough green space and room for him to expend his never ending supply of energy.

Looking forward to the insights and suggestions – Thanks!
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Old 05-09-2017, 03:56 PM
23,841 posts, read 36,597,147 times
Reputation: 24384
I think Tampa could be a good option for you. Check out the Downtown/South Tampa neighborhoods including Hyde Park and Channelside.


Here's a "copy and paste" summary from an online article that sums up the area pretty well...

South Tampa
Popular communities: Bayshore, Davis Island, Hyde Park, SoHo, Palma Ceia, Culbreath Isles, Port Tampa

If you want to be near the water, surrounded by boutique shops and non-chain restaurants, and you love the look and feel of a historic district, South Tampa is one of the best places to live in Tampa. Here you find gorgeous homes of all shapes and sizes, though they tend to be pretty pricey. If a historic home is not within your budget, don't let that deter you as there are also more affordable options such as condos, luxury lofts, and townhomes.

There is always something going on in South Tampa, from festivals to live music events to an active nightlife, and the majority of it is within walking distance or a short Uber ride. And because South Tampa is close to Ybor City (pronounced ee-bore) and Channelside, there are even more options for entertainment, shopping, and nightlife minutes away.

If you're an active individual or family, you might like to know that Bayshore Boulevard Linear Park is the longest continuous sidewalk (4.5 miles long). Residents make good use of it, rain or shine you can join walkers, joggers, runners, and cyclists throughout the day. The sun rises on Bayshore over Old Tampa Bay, this is also where the annual Gasparilla Invasion takes place. At the southern end find Ballast Point Park. Family-friendly, it boasts a water park, concession, fishing pier, pavilions and more. Walking distance from Bayshore Boulevard on Howard Avenue you find yourself in the heart of the SoHo district, quaint homes and vintage apartment buildings line quiet residential streets as you head deeper up Howard to the entertainment district. Learn more about the shopping and nightlife Soho offers in SoHo Tampa Guide | Best Bars, Restaurants & More.

Interested in an 'island life'? If you are moving to Tampa don't miss Davis Islands, a group of small islands connected to Bayshore Boulevard, homes on the island are minutes away from Downtown Tampa. You can read more about the interesting history of the islands in Davis Islands, Its Real Estate Moguls, History and Intrigue.

South Tampa is a peninsula with Bayshore Boulevard bordering to the East and the Westshore District, Culbreath Isles and Port Tampa bordering the West. Lined with everything from shiny new gated communities to older construction neighborhoods you find every price point when looking in South Tampa. Culbreath Isles and Westshore Yacht Club have guard gates and waterfront options from majestic homes to townhomes and condos. Culbreath Isles is a single-family home community while Westshore has every option including a private club and marina. Port Tampa is at the southern tip, also on the water, this was and still is an industrial neighborhood, Port Tampa also houses families stationed at nearby MacDill Air Force Base. Port Tampa is the neighborhood to research if you are looking for a neighborhood in transition. Once nothing but small homes, though you still see vintage cracker-style and shotgun homes, there is an exciting boom happening in Port Tampa as new construction and larger homes replace the past. You find Picnic Island Beach in Port Tampa, a wonderful waterfront park where you can jog, fish, launch a boat, play on the playground, swim, lay on the beach, play frisbee golf, picnic and more.

Downtown Tampa
Also close to the water, but with more of a city feel than South Tampa, Downtown Tampa is full of condos and highrises with first-class amenities such as fitness centers, concierges, security, pools and hot tubs, and the best skyline and water views.

Downtown Tampa is a business district, centrally located for easy access to major highways, shopping, and restaurants. Stetson Law School and the University of Tampa are also within walking distance of the many condos.

Though there are not as many options as South Tampa for nightlife, Downtown Tampa does have some popular and non-chain hangouts and restaurants. For alternative entertainment, The Tampa Theatre, The Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children's Museum, and Curtis Hixon Park, used for various events, are fun places within walking distance if you are considering moving to Tampa.

Shopping opportunities are scant, but Westshore Plaza and International Plaza are just a few minutes away, offering popular dining and upscale shopping for everything from housewares to electronics to clothing.

Ybor City (pronounced ee-bore)
Ybor is a community famous for its historical Cuban cigar factories. Its charm is found in its restored brick roads; an active trolley system connecting Ybor to South Tampa, and Channelside; and its bungalows. While there aren't as many historic housing options in Ybor as there are in South Tampa, there are modern and renovated condos, townhomes and lofts, some with pools and fitness centers. Recently, new, single-family homes are being built in this charming city, if you are looking for an eclectic yet old-time neighborhood, be sure to ask your realtor about all the options in Ybor City.

While Ybor is host to many festivals, parades and events, it's known for its nightlife; full of nightclubs for every type of club-goer. For alternate entertainment, there is a movie theater, a comedy club, and concerts, such as the annual WMNF Tropical Heatwave, throughout the year.

Ybor is also chock full of independently owned and operated restaurants for all tastes. There are also some locally owned retail and clothing stores, but for big-name shopping, you'll have to venture out. Like Downtown Tampa, though, Ybor is close to major highways so alternative entertainment, shopping, and dining is never far away.

Within walking distance of housing in Ybor is the Hillsborough Community College - Ybor Campus, which is located in several buildings throughout Ybor. Fairly recently, a large section of Ybor has been dubbed 'Gaybor' and contains shops, clubs, and restaurants owned by and/or catering to the LGBT community.

Channelside, like Downtown Tampa, has a city feel with its lofts and highrises, but without the many skyscrapers of the business district. Condos, lofts, and high rises offer panoramic views of the city and water and offer versatile interior design, such as exposed brick walls and concrete floors. Find restaurants, retail and office space in Channelside Bay Plaza along with annual events and weekly farmers and artists markets.

Channelside is within walking distance to places like The Florida Aquarium; The St. Pete Times Forum, home of the NHL Tampa Bay Lightning; and several non-chain restaurants.
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Old 05-09-2017, 11:31 PM
Location: Miami-Jax
7,617 posts, read 8,657,997 times
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Just running with your suggestions that all make sense on some level:

Charleston - Just be aware it's probably more expensive than you'd expect. And also being much smaller it will offer less of everything, though it obviously packs a lot of punch for its weight.

Atlanta - Makes a ton of sense to me. Something like Midtown might be ideal for you, but the budget will be tricky. You may be relegated to one of the neighborhoods on the eastside, which isnt a bad thing, but just not as clean or urban feeling as Midtown/Buckhead and even downtown to an extent.

Jacksonville - The best thing about Jax will be the COL. Your budget means you can get a pretty nice unit in pretty much any area you want. But it will struggle to meet or exceed expectations in most other categories. Aside from Charleston, you'll find the amenities to be on the lesser side and the young professional community to be a bit small. Walkable hoods are limited and some parts are more Pittsburgh-grungy than Charlotte-clean. Hard to find a city with more access to water sports though, and if you want to live at the beach then you can't beat the value.

Tampa - Mostly a bigger and slightly more expensive Jax. That is, the COL aint bad, the amenities are pretty good, and the walkable areas, though nothing to write home about, are a bit more abundant. Definitely more YPs and more to do in general.

I think Houston and Dallas should be on your radar as well.
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Old 05-10-2017, 07:58 AM
71,230 posts, read 98,374,679 times
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Just because you are considering Charleston and due to its location, perhaps look into Columbia SC too. Short drive to the coast and the mountains, is a growing area and is about the same size as Charleston in terms of the metro area. In fact, its metro is actually a little bit bigger in terms of population.
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