U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Minnesota > Minneapolis - St. Paul
 [Register]
Minneapolis - St. Paul Twin Cities
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)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-29-2012, 08:27 PM
 
33 posts, read 38,058 times
Reputation: 14

Advertisements

My family is planning on buying a house in either Mpls or St Paul to be closer to the U, but we have some questions that I thought someone here might be able to help with, and possibly help us narrow down which neighborhoods we should be searching in.

-Safety - we don't know much about the safety of the neighborhoods. From what we've heard, Frogtown and parts of North Mpls should be avoided. Are there any other areas that wouldn't be ideal for a family with small children?

-Schools - Where should I look to find accurate ratings on schools (particularly elementary)? Any thoughts on the schools in any neighborhoods that are being suggested?

-Commute to the U - Right now my husband is commuting 2 1/2 hours a day round trip and we really want to cut down on that. But looking at the bus routes from lots of places in St Paul, it's still going to take an hour to get to the U, even though it's so much closer, because of all of the stops. Does anyone know of any places that have good, direct routes that won't take so long?

We are looking in the range of about $80,000-90,000, so our options are very limited. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-29-2012, 09:59 PM
 
1,816 posts, read 2,784,730 times
Reputation: 773
Options directly around the U are likely slim to none in your range. Houses, even bad ones from what I've heard, sell for quite high because of their rental income potential. Those nearby neighborhoods going to have the fastest commutes.

You could try some neighborhoods in South Minneapolis that may have fairly short local or express routes, but I'm not sure about the local school options.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 06:26 AM
 
687 posts, read 1,149,413 times
Reputation: 323
You might look at something convenient to either the County H Park-and-Ride in Mounds View (15 minutes to essentially the Metrodome) or the 95th Ave. Park-and-Ride in Blaine (18-23 minutes to the East Bank of the U).

The County H Park-and-Ride is in the Mounds View school district which is amongst the best in the state (and perhaps THE best). East of the 95th Ave. Park-and-Ride are Circle Pines and Lexington which are in the Centennial district which is also highly regarded.

Either of those areas seem to be plenty safe. They also have some housing in your price range. Many of them are short sales or foreclosures. But, some are not.

Another housing option would be to look at a trailer park in the area. Many of the trailer parks in the north metro seem to be quite safe.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 06:44 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 57,560,606 times
Reputation: 10626
The houses in your price range are going to need a LOT of work, if you can get one. Buying in the foreclosure market is not easy. You pretty much have to be there right away and submit a great bid. It might take a day it might take a year. Buying in St. Paul or Minneapolis in that price range is most likely going to land you in a neighborhood you don't want to be in or, again, a house that needs a lot of work. If you can afford where you are living now, it is probably your best option.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 11:34 AM
 
10,629 posts, read 24,950,422 times
Reputation: 6739
Why not rent? You must also be spending a fortune on transportation costs. Is your husband a student or an employee? If student, you may want to consider looking into family housing (links on the University's pages); it's affordable, safe, convenient, and filled with lots of students with young kids. It's rental, but unless you're dead-set on buying it might be a great option for a few years.

You may be able to find a townhouse somewhere in that price range. But that's extremely low. Unless you're willing and able to do a lot of renovations and repairs and/or live in a sketchy neighborhood, you are not going to have many options. Also check out, if you haven't already, the maps of express buses to and from the U; the local buses can be very slow, but many areas in the Twin Cities have express buses that cut down the commute time tremendously.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Minnesota
5,147 posts, read 6,875,699 times
Reputation: 1566
My sister in law lives in Merriam Park in St Paul. Wonderful neighborhood. Very near U of M campus. Another is St Anthony, just the other side of 280 from Como. Again, a superlative neighborhood in my estimation. The 3 bus goes through the neighborhood and then straight to the U. I think the nearer neighborhoods have problems. So I would check these two out. My sister in laws kids went to Capitol Magnet School and St Paul Central, two excellent schools. I'm sure people can name others, but I would definitely check out the magnet school.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 05:39 PM
 
20,793 posts, read 57,560,606 times
Reputation: 10626
I just reread your first post, I read he was driving 1/2 hour each way but I see it is 2 1/2 hours/day. I don't blame you for wanting to move. Ignore my line about staying put.

The problem with buying a townhome is yes, you can get them for less money but they all have townhome association fees of $150-250+/month and that adds up. You can tack on about $20,000 or more to a single family home to come out to the same cost with the association fee. You also won't be able to rent anything in a safe neighborhood, or really any neighborhood for less than what a house payment would be on an 80K-90K house-which, with taxes, insurance and mortgage will be in the $500-600 range. Is there any possibility of bumping up your budget?
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-30-2012, 06:26 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis, MN
9,520 posts, read 14,474,926 times
Reputation: 4866
At 80-90K for a move-in ready home you will be, for the most part, restricted to the two areas you mentioned as being potential safety concerns (north Mpls and Frogtown area of St. Paul). There are a few other neighborhoods in each of the cities where you might be able to find something, but not a whole lot. I ran a search on single family homes in the metro under 90k and I see several in South Minneapolis in the Phillips/Powderhorn/Longfellow/Nokomis area (look south of downtown Minneapolis east of 35W and west of the Mississippi River) and several more in St. Paul in the West Seventh area (look east of 35E and west of the Mississippi river just west of downtown St. Paul). Both of those areas are close the U of M, are decently safe and have ok schools in my opinion.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-01-2012, 09:23 PM
 
Location: St Paul
7,713 posts, read 4,192,999 times
Reputation: 4992
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beenhere4ever View Post
My sister in law lives in Merriam Park in St Paul. Wonderful neighborhood. Very near U of M campus. Another is St Anthony, just the other side of 280 from Como. Again, a superlative neighborhood in my estimation. The 3 bus goes through the neighborhood and then straight to the U. I think the nearer neighborhoods have problems. So I would check these two out. My sister in laws kids went to Capitol Magnet School and St Paul Central, two excellent schools. I'm sure people can name others, but I would definitely check out the magnet school.
Best advice in this thread imo. Also look closely at the Newell Park area of St Paul which lies W of Snelling, S of Pierce Butler/Saints Stadium/N of University & E of St Anthony Park.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-01-2012, 09:55 PM
 
33 posts, read 38,058 times
Reputation: 14
Thank you everyone for your input! It has been really helpful and we are taking what you have said into consideration.

Cruz - Could you be more specific about which neighborhoods we should look at? You said "Phillips/Powderhorn/Longfellow/Nokomis area," but from everything I've heard, Phillips is a place to avoid. Maybe I'm mistaken?

Golfgal - The problem with our budget is that, as a full-time student, my husband isn't making a lot and so they aren't able to approve us for a very big mortgage. Even if he gets another job, they aren't able to count it towards a mortgage because it's not a "steady" job. So we are pretty set in our price restraints right now.

uptown urbanist - Yes, he is a student. We thought about the student housing options but I'm not interested in "apartment" living with 3 little kids - packing them all up to go do laundry on the other side of the building, etc. Maybe I'm blowing it out of proportion But more seriously, though, we are ready for our own place with our own responsibilities (assuming we can afford it...). Do you (or does anyone else) know of any places other than Blaine and Mounds View with good express bus routes to the U? (Thanks for the suggestions, northsub, but we didn't really see any houses in the area that worked for us and we would prefer to be in the south or west suburbs if we had the choice).

I really appreciate all of the feedback and would welcome any more!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote 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.


Reply
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 > Minnesota > Minneapolis - St. Paul
Similar Threads

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