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Old 12-20-2007, 02:23 PM
 
1,408 posts, read 7,579,643 times
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hubby and i (no children) will be relocating to VA next year (once our home sells). Hubby will be working in NN. We'd like to live on the water (canal, lake, navigate-able water way something we can have a dock and put a pontoon boat or possibly a fishing boat). I've found several homes in hampton that are waterfront but i'm not sure if they are in "safe, desirable neighborhoods/areas". Can anyone tell me what parts of hampton we should look at and what parts to stay away from? We're also looking at Gloucester point, poquoson, seaford, surry, smithfield and suffolk. We prefer a home with some land (half acre or more). We like quiet, peacefulness vs city living. Being waterfront is top priority so if we must give up land in order to have that we will (.25 is the smallest we can go - have 2 large dogs, they need room to run around).

We are working with a realtor but any help from locals would be much appreciated. We're very excited about our move and can't wait to live in VA!
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Old 12-20-2007, 03:54 PM
 
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I live in Hampton and I would tell you to live somewhere else. There seem to be nice neighborhoods in NN by the James River. But I would choose the mainland instead; the penninsula is just a big, bad area in my book, and getting worse. I have dogs, too, and lately there has been a lot of interest from strangers about them, although they obviously aren't dog lovers...
Gloucester has some odd characters, too, but that might be a safer place, if a long commute.
I'd have a look at Smithfield and that area if I were you. Good luck.
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Old 12-21-2007, 05:15 AM
 
Location: Williamsburg
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What price range are you considering? Depending on that there are definitely desirable areas in the areas you are looking into. Each one has it's own feel and personality. One other think to look out for are flood zones. Large portions of Seaford, Poquoson, Gloucester were flooded during Hurricane Isabel. Have your agent ask the sellers if the house flooded during Isabel ? Does it require flood insurance ? If you find one you like ask the neighbors next door if their house flooded. You may also want to consider a water access community. One that has a neighborhood pier. There are a few around.
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:34 AM
 
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
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As far as waterfront living goes, I would really have to suggest Isle of Wight - Suffolk/Smithfield/Carrolton. That area is still very rural, waterways are plentiful, land is plentiful and it is SAFE. Newport News is right across the James River Bridge. Many families have boats in that area and they are just good people - tend to be a little more country, but nice hard working folks.

The only possible downside is that your closest mall is about 15 minutes away, but there are grocery stores, restaurants and drugstores close to home. However, if you plan to spend alot of time boating and enjoying the outdoors, Isle of Wight might be just right. I love the fact that the area is still so undeveloped, yet close to everything.

Surry is pretty far away from civilization and consists mainly of farmers. There are only 2 lane roads getting in and out. It is beautiful land, but probably not your best choice. Smithfield is very quaint and not as far removed as Surry, but still rather isolated.
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Old 12-21-2007, 09:33 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Williamsburg View Post
What price range are you considering? Depending on that there are definitely desirable areas in the areas you are looking into. Each one has it's own feel and personality. One other think to look out for are flood zones. Large portions of Seaford, Poquoson, Gloucester were flooded during Hurricane Isabel. Have your agent ask the sellers if the house flooded during Isabel ? Does it require flood insurance ? If you find one you like ask the neighbors next door if their house flooded. You may also want to consider a water access community. One that has a neighborhood pier. There are a few around.
Mr williamsburg, thanks for responding. if a property was flooded/damaged by hurricane isabel does this mean it will be extremely difficult getting flood insurance or extremely expensive? Our price range is up to $325,000. I have seen a few homes in water access communities but i'm not crazy about living in a community that has strict rules/regulations. i crossed off one waterfront property in chesapeake because I did not like the rules for dogs.
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Old 12-21-2007, 09:38 AM
 
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Originally Posted by stacylee926 View Post
As far as waterfront living goes, I would really have to suggest Isle of Wight - Suffolk/Smithfield/Carrolton. That area is still very rural, waterways are plentiful, land is plentiful and it is SAFE. Newport News is right across the James River Bridge. Many families have boats in that area and they are just good people - tend to be a little more country, but nice hard working folks.

The only possible downside is that your closest mall is about 15 minutes away, but there are grocery stores, restaurants and drugstores close to home. However, if you plan to spend alot of time boating and enjoying the outdoors, Isle of Wight might be just right. I love the fact that the area is still so undeveloped, yet close to everything.

Surry is pretty far away from civilization and consists mainly of farmers. There are only 2 lane roads getting in and out. It is beautiful land, but probably not your best choice. Smithfield is very quaint and not as far removed as Surry, but still rather isolated.

Hi Stacy thanks for the information. 15 minutes to the mall is great actually. right now i live 30 minutes from the mall. I live in a small town now (one restaurant, one gas station, a coffee shop, no grocery store) so i'm used to driving and I guess, by massachusetts standards, living in the country. My town has working farms (horses, cattle, corn) and a lot of cranberry bogs.

I was told that you don't want to live in Newport News because it's not very safe. Is this true? I'll definitely look at Isle of Wight and Smithfield.
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Old 12-21-2007, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
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It really bothers me when people say don't live in one particular city. Here in HR, every city has bad areas but to bash the whole city? That is unrealistic!! My dad, and 2 of my families of bro and sis in laws live in Newport News and it is just as safe as anywhere! They all live near Warwick Blvd and Oyster Point Rd - very close to great shopping and the interstate. There are waterfront homes near Menchville High School and all along the Warwick Blvd area back in the subdivisions. This area is not as 'secluded' as Isle of Wight. Just a suburban area with older and a little newer homes in an established neighborhood.

The bad part of NN is the Southeast end near the shipyards and that peninsula area - basically the numbered streets.

If you are a 'country girl' you will probably find the Isle of Wight area more like home where boating is a normal every day thing in good weather (and bad weather for all those die hard fisherman).

I have been here for 4 years, but coming down to see family for over 20 years so I know the area pretty well. One thing I always thought was funny was how separated the Southside (Norfolk, VA Beach, Portsmouth, Isle of Wight) and the Peninsula (NN, Hampton, Williamsburg) are. It is like the Great Wall of China separates the areas!!!! Each area has it's own newspaper and phone books and residents dread going from one area to the other - like we are hours apart!! I go back and forth all the time and it has never bothered me!
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Old 12-21-2007, 04:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stacylee926 View Post
It really bothers me when people say don't live in one particular city. Here in HR, every city has bad areas but to bash the whole city? That is unrealistic!! My dad, and 2 of my families of bro and sis in laws live in Newport News and it is just as safe as anywhere! They all live near Warwick Blvd and Oyster Point Rd - very close to great shopping and the interstate. There are waterfront homes near Menchville High School and all along the Warwick Blvd area back in the subdivisions. This area is not as 'secluded' as Isle of Wight. Just a suburban area with older and a little newer homes in an established neighborhood.

The bad part of NN is the Southeast end near the shipyards and that peninsula area - basically the numbered streets.

If you are a 'country girl' you will probably find the Isle of Wight area more like home where boating is a normal every day thing in good weather (and bad weather for all those die hard fisherman).

I have been here for 4 years, but coming down to see family for over 20 years so I know the area pretty well. One thing I always thought was funny was how separated the Southside (Norfolk, VA Beach, Portsmouth, Isle of Wight) and the Peninsula (NN, Hampton, Williamsburg) are. It is like the Great Wall of China separates the areas!!!! Each area has it's own newspaper and phone books and residents dread going from one area to the other - like we are hours apart!! I go back and forth all the time and it has never bothered me!
I totally agree with your comment about "good" and "bad" areas. Every city including almighty Chesapeake has their bad parts. I live in NN, and yes the East End and parts of Denbigh are bad, but there are very nice, almost secluded areas in the city. Anything along the James River along River road, Riverside, and Hidenwood is beautiful. My mother lives near the river in Hidenwood, and it is as if she is in one of the counties; very peaceful, quiet with a view of the James River.

Yes, there is a great divide between Southside and Peninsula, although I feel Isle of Wight/ Smithfield is more Peninsula orientated than the Southside. People on the Southside give me funny looks that I am from Newport News. Although it is great that NN got the area's first Trader Joes, and the second one is going to Williamsburg.
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:13 PM
Status: "San Diego this weekend!" (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: Durham, NC
24,991 posts, read 35,682,119 times
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okay, i'll suggest that if you still want to look at hampton, basically the rule of thumb is to live above Mercury Blvd (Rt. 258) as you'll see on the map.

http://hampton.va.us/neighborhoods/m...%20River%20Map

one neighborhood close to water that is pretty nice is Back River
http://hampton.va.us/neighborhoods/n...&id=back_river
Michael's Woods is also good.
http://hampton.va.us/neighborhoods/n...michaels_woods
Riverdale is one of my favorites
http://hampton.va.us/neighborhoods/n...r&id=riverdale

Just in case you are wondering i'm from the Todd's Center.
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Old 12-22-2007, 06:00 PM
 
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I agree with stacylee, it is ignorant to bash a whole city or the whole Peninsula; York County, Williamsburg, and Poquoson are probably the safest and wealthiest areas in Hampton Roads. I grew up in Newport News in an affluent and established neighborhood along the James River, and it was and still is a very quaint and beautiful neighborhood; then ten years in Yorktown, and I would move back in a heartbeat.

To get on topic, alanboy provided very good info, and on the map, the golden colored district in the northeastern tip is probably the best bet for Hampton city. For surrounding areas, I specifically recommend a neighborhood called Calthrop Neck in York County, which is where I lived for five years and I think is a best kept secret. That's my most favorite place I have ever lived because it's a neck of land surrounded by water, very safe (we never locked our doors), quiet, secluded and upscale, yet in southern York County which has civilization and is convenient to Newport News, Hampton, and even Williamsburg. The only downside is it's becoming a tad bit snooty with alot of expensive new homes popping up.

Especially since you don't have kids, I would also recommend the parts of Newport News along the James River, full of beautiful homes in established neighborhoods and convenient to all the major amenities of shopping and the interstate.
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