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Old 08-15-2013, 06:07 PM
 
3 posts, read 8,679 times
Reputation: 10

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Hope someone can help!

My family of four lives in Laguna Niguel, Orange County. We moved here a year ago from Chicago and are currently renting a three bedroom single family home. We have an opportunity for a job transfer to Paso Robles. I have been researching SLO county and I'm attempting to compare and contrast with OC.

My personal list in Laguna Niguel-
Positives: weather, natural beauty, safety, excellent schools, close to ocean, great trails for biking, nice people, lots of job and higher education opportunities, lots of fun kid stuff to do (although it gets expensive and a free day at the beach is still their favorite)
Negatives: housing costs (of course), congestion of people/traffic, lack of community feel/identity, the cost (in many ways) of dumping so much water on this area to make it green
Neutrals: shopping is convenient

The main reason we are considering a move is to own a house again. In general, prices seem a bit lower in SLO county than OC. I've researched Cambria to Pismo Beach on the coast and Paso Robles to SLO. I think I have an idea of climate differences and housing costs. The quality of the schools are my main concern. Schools have made changes in the last couple years due to budget cuts and many posts and ratings I've read are dated. We are willing to pay more for a house with great schools but is living in the city of San Luis Obispo our only real option? We'd like more house for the money if possible.

Needs in SLO county: Great schools, own a home, not crazy hot!

Next week we will spending a few days in the area. I intend to do a lot of driving around! Any recommendations for specific areas to check out would be much appreciated!

Thanks!!
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Old 08-15-2013, 09:34 PM
 
Location: Orange, California
1,576 posts, read 6,349,028 times
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SLO is a great small city/town. It meets most of the positives you list about LN. It may be a tad further to the beach, but that's about it. I think it really boils down to weather you want to live in a smaller metro area or a larger metro area. Orange County is one of the most populous counties in the United States. And it is virtually one massive urban megalopolis from San Diego to Simi Valley and east to Riverside/San Bernardino. If you want big city amenities and recreation, stay in LN. If you want a slower paced, small city lifestyle, go with SLO. I personally love SLO, but I think the reality is that I would get a little bored after a few months if I lived there. Maybe someday when I'm retired...
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Old 08-16-2013, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Anaheim
1,962 posts, read 4,483,767 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goozer View Post
SLO is a great small city/town. It meets most of the positives you list about LN. It may be a tad further to the beach, but that's about it. I think it really boils down to weather you want to live in a smaller metro area or a larger metro area. Orange County is one of the most populous counties in the United States. And it is virtually one massive urban megalopolis from San Diego to Simi Valley and east to Riverside/San Bernardino. If you want big city amenities and recreation, stay in LN. If you want a slower paced, small city lifestyle, go with SLO. I personally love SLO, but I think the reality is that I would get a little bored after a few months if I lived there. Maybe someday when I'm retired...
Hey, Orange County doesn't stretch to Simi Valley. Must be talking about LA County as well, I guess.
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Old 08-16-2013, 04:38 PM
 
32 posts, read 61,630 times
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Be sure to check out the differences in the level of sophistication between the two areas. If you feel comfortable in LN, SLO my feel a little like the boonies to you. That being said, the gentleman who wrote the book on the Blue Zones also did research on the happiest places to live. SLO was ranked at the top!
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Old 08-16-2013, 05:23 PM
 
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Thanks everyone!
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Old 08-16-2013, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Orange, California
1,576 posts, read 6,349,028 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrsltd View Post
Hey, Orange County doesn't stretch to Simi Valley. Must be talking about LA County as well, I guess.
Yup, and SD, eastern Riverside, and eastern San Bernardino counties as well. I love OC but you have to view it as almost the epicenter (along with LA) of a massive five county urban metropolis. Quite a different metro area from SLO.
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Old 08-17-2013, 07:13 AM
 
Location: So Ca
26,724 posts, read 26,798,919 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LagunaLady27 View Post
Be sure to check out the differences in the level of sophistication between the two areas. If you feel comfortable in LN, SLO my feel a little like the boonies to you.
No kidding. If the OP's idea of entertainment is going to a rodeo or watching cows graze, SLO will be fine. It will be nothing like Orange County, though.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:22 PM
 
Location: Escondido
434 posts, read 988,197 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CA4Now View Post
No kidding. If the OP's idea of entertainment is going to a rodeo or watching cows graze, SLO will be fine. It will be nothing like Orange County, though.
Hey, you can wait until you've been in town a year before settling for grazing cows, especially if you first choose those little horses in Solvang and the emus in Buellton. I love visiting SLO, thought I wanted to live there once, but not so sure now -- mainly the "middle-of-nowhere-ness." Although it is a gorgeous "nowhere," and it gives me an instant sense of SoCal detox when I arrive. One plus is having Santa Barbara not too far away for concerts, museums and dining etc. Monterey Bay not too far either, but it's not like most people spend every minute away from work taking three-day road trips everywhere. So I would never chiefly sell an area to myself with talk of "city A is X hours that way and city B is X hours the other way etc."
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Old 08-19-2013, 03:04 AM
 
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I was hoping the city of SLO wouldn't feel too rural. I'm pretty positive none of the towns north of there will work. I've never been a country girl. The costal times don't seem as family friendly. Will see for myself this week!
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Old 08-19-2013, 01:29 PM
 
Location: Escondido
434 posts, read 988,197 times
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But you're going to see it for yourself, so that's good. A lot of those places at least have real, nice town centers, such as SLO and Paso. Morro as well. I guess Pismo does too beyond just tourist business, but it's been a while since I've been there.
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