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Old 03-03-2007, 09:34 PM
 
13 posts, read 77,931 times
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My husband and I are in the midst of considering a move downstate from the Syracuse area with our 2 small children (ages 3 1/2 y.o. and 9 months old) for career reasons as well as to have my husband home at night (he travels during the week 75% of the year...proving difficult for our family). We also look forward to exposing our kids to all the cultural venues in NYC!

We want a location that allows him to commute to the Wall Street area by train preferably under 75 minutes and allows us to maintain our standard of living. Right now, we live a small lake town (Cazenovia) outside of Syracuse. The cost of housing here is quite low in comparison to most areas of the country. We live in a 2400 sq.ft. house on 1 acre within walking distance to our main street. The public schools are great and we can even consider private school. There is an excellent YMCA with a ton of sports for the kids within a 20 minute drive.

Our dream town:
1. Family friendly/safe/lots of room to run
2. Excellent public schools
3. Can find a home around 2000 sq ft in move-in condition (hard to work around the house with a crawler and active 3 1/2 y.o.) in 500000-600000 range.
4. Within 75 minutes by train to NYC/Wall Street.
5. Community sports facilities or good YMCA nearby

Are we right in thinking we should consider Pearl River, Clarkstown, Nyack, Rye Brook/Pelham and New City in Rockland County? Scarsdale, Rye, Katonah, Pleasantville, Chappaqua, South Salem and Yorktown in Westchester? Ideas for Orange county...Salisbury Mills? Ridgefield, Redding, Fairfield in Connecticut?
Help!!! We're planning an exploratory trip for next weekend!
In advance, thanks for any assistance.
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Old 03-05-2007, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,360 posts, read 11,299,406 times
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Keep in mind that Wall Street is at the extreme south end of Manhattan. Look at Princeton, NJ there's a direct train from there.
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Old 03-06-2007, 06:42 PM
 
Location: westchester, ny
86 posts, read 357,042 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cazmama View Post
Are we right in thinking we should consider Pearl River, Clarkstown, Nyack, Rye Brook/Pelham and New City in Rockland County? Scarsdale, Rye, Katonah, Pleasantville, Chappaqua, South Salem and Yorktown in Westchester? Ideas for Orange county...Salisbury Mills? Ridgefield, Redding, Fairfield in Connecticut?
Help!!! We're planning an exploratory trip for next weekend!
In advance, thanks for any assistance.
Cazmama,
The only towns mentioned above within 75 minutes door to door of wall st are: Rye Brook, Pelham, Scarsdale, Rye, and possibly Pleasantville and Chappaqua. Realize that Wall St adds about half an hour of travel time once your train arrives at Grand Central. And some of those towns are 20 minutes from a train station (Ridgefield, Redding). I believe from Orange and Rockland you would likely drive instead of taking a train - or drive 20-40 minutes to a station, over a Hudson crossing (tappan zee or George Washington bridge) which is 1/2 an hour of commute on it's own.

Are you set on NY or CT? Because I agree with Goldie, the commute to Wall St is much easier from New Jersey.

If you are set on NY...I keep seeming to recommend this town to potential Westchester-ites, but I think Valhalla might be a good middle ground for you. You can find a very nice house there for 600k, it has a train station with a great NYC commute, and the schools are excellent, but not overly competitive like some of the more "exclusive" westchester communities. It's very blue collar compared to other towns (Pelham, Rye, Scarsdale, Chappaqua for example). It does not have many amenities "within" the town, but it borders White Plains, which has everything. It does have Kensico Dam Plaza, which hosts a number of fun events throughout the year (and it's pretty).
Hope this helps!! and good luck!
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Old 03-06-2007, 06:47 PM
 
Location: westchester, ny
86 posts, read 357,042 times
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Oh, and one more thing that is great about Valhalla - the taxes for some reason run about half of the rest of Westchester - a substantial number. My sister owns a house in Valhalla worth about $500k, and her taxes are under $6,000/yr. My taxes in Goldens Bridge are $12,000 on a house just a smidge bigger...
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Old 03-07-2007, 01:28 PM
 
2 posts, read 10,005 times
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Default Nyack

Your dream description sounds like Nyack. Many Wall Streeter's around here, lot's of access to NYC. The town itself has a very Greenwich Village feel with art, music and theater in abundance. House prices range from over $1 Million to $400k. Nyack is close to NYC but still maintains an "upstate" feel. And yes, there is a YMCA right in town. Bottom line: it's a great place to live!
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Old 03-07-2007, 06:58 PM
 
13 posts, read 77,931 times
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Default Thanks to all!

I certainly appreciate all of your insight. There is so much to consider.

We're now considering Princeton too. Any idea how intense/competitive the school environment is there?

Also, is there a ferry that my husband can take from Rockland County to the Wallstreet area?

Is it easiest to get from Nyack to Wallstreet by train? How are Nyack schools?

How are Valhalla schools? It does seem more affordable!

In advance thanks for any input.
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Old 03-08-2007, 08:24 AM
 
Location: westchester, ny
86 posts, read 357,042 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cazmama View Post
How are Valhalla schools? It does seem more affordable!
I'm not familiar enough with Jersey and Rockland to answer those questions, but I can tell you, I would not hesitate for a second to send my children to Valhalla Schools. My son started Elem school there, and then we moved to Goldens Bridge (Katonah-Lewisboro/John Jay) schoools. John Jay has a much better "reputation", but I personally felt Valhalla had better teachers, programs, facilities. The "reputation" of Westchester schools follows economic breakup - the exclusive communities do a good job of making sure their districts perform in "ranking" criteria. John Jay actually retains PR firm, as do many other top districts.

As I said in a prior post, there are no "bad" Westchester schools, only schools where the economic makeup of the student body includes many more lower income families, who tend to score lower on standardized tests, thus giving them poorer "ratings" in test scores. If you look at spending $ per student, and class sizes, and teachers salaries, and programs offered, they are all pretty much the same in every Westchester district.

Valhalla is a good "middle of the road" district, without many ultra rich, and without many ultra poor families.
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Old 03-08-2007, 11:13 PM
 
1,330 posts, read 4,769,072 times
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In Orange County you want to look at Cornwall, Warwick, Greenwood Lake, Monroe, Montgomery (including Eastern areas of Walden, Maybrook, South Eastern areas of Wallkill), Goshen. All towns are at the upper range for your commute, but worthy of investigation and a nice drive through.

5-600K should get you a newer, clean 3000 sq ft house on a few acres in Montgomery or Goshen, possibly even a potential horse property if you should choose. In Cornwall you could probably get a big, newer home for that money but it would likely be at the higher end of your range.

All school districts mentioned are good, there is so much room to stretch in most of these towns. Having been through Syracuse area before I can say that general area probably would be closest feeling of "home" for you. There are a few farms up that way still and crime is low. If you want room to run and for your kids to stretch it is hard to beat OC. Just stay out of Newburgh and Middletown school districts.
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Old 03-09-2007, 06:31 AM
 
18 posts, read 100,515 times
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hi! please see my tuxedo park thread - we are under an hour to nyc - great schools - 3700 sq foot home built in 2000 - we're 10 min from bergen and 10 min from rockland but its not congested and beautiful
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Old 03-09-2007, 10:40 AM
 
202 posts, read 443,619 times
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stay away from westchester most of the areas you mentioned are outside of the 75 min commute time anyway and you will not get much for your money. You are way better off in NJ or poss. rockland county.
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