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Old 10-24-2011, 01:38 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
33 posts, read 41,030 times
Reputation: 35

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Wonderful post, 4kids! Thank you! I have been thinking of moving for a couple of years now (and the Raleigh-Durham area was one of the areas at the top of my list). After a lot of research, traveling and soul searching, I have decided on Florida. I look forward to writing my own "new resident post" in the future...
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:57 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Beach
3,380 posts, read 8,367,367 times
Reputation: 2931
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4kidsWow View Post
: Our water bill range for the summer months: $180 - $220.

Our electric bill range for the summer months: $345- 385.

Wowza. Granted, I live in Tampa so maybe our rates are better, but I don't think they would vary that much.

Family of 5. My wife is a SAHM.. .we have 3 kids so we're close in family size.

Poorly Insulated Home. 2200+ SF with a pool. Pump runs 10 hours a day. Thermostat is set at 79. Our washer and dryer are 1 year old front loaders. All my light bulbs are energy efficient types and if the kids fail to turn off their bedroom lights when they leave the room I take out all the light bulbs but 1 for a week or so.
We rarely water the lawn (no need to yet) and all of our plants are Florida Native, therefore not requiring additional water.

Electric: $290

Water: $80

Apparently my energy saving ways seem to be working. And here I am trying to get these bills even lower. lol. Maybe I should be happy where I am at with them.
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Old 10-27-2011, 03:26 AM
 
812 posts, read 1,492,272 times
Reputation: 436
Quote:
Originally Posted by FloridaKash View Post
Wowza. Granted, I live in Tampa so maybe our rates are better, but I don't think they would vary that much.

Family of 5. My wife is a SAHM.. .we have 3 kids so we're close in family size.

Poorly Insulated Home. 2200+ SF with a pool. Pump runs 10 hours a day. Thermostat is set at 79. Our washer and dryer are 1 year old front loaders. All my light bulbs are energy efficient types and if the kids fail to turn off their bedroom lights when they leave the room I take out all the light bulbs but 1 for a week or so.
We rarely water the lawn (no need to yet) and all of our plants are Florida Native, therefore not requiring additional water.

Electric: $290

Water: $80

Apparently my energy saving ways seem to be working. And here I am trying to get these bills even lower. lol. Maybe I should be happy where I am at with them.
I would bet your house might get more shade.
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Old 10-27-2011, 11:53 AM
 
71 posts, read 200,869 times
Reputation: 22
Thanks for the updates! Still trying to convince dh to move to FL in 2 years! If he can find a job there we may do it!
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Old 10-27-2011, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Spring Hill Florida
12,135 posts, read 14,274,046 times
Reputation: 6048
Great post. It is nice and refreshing to read where some actually did investigation and research so you knew for sure what to expect. Perhaps as you acclimate you guys will be able to raise that thermostat on the a/c to about 78 or 79 and your electric bill will certainly go down.

Ask the landlord about them putting in reclaimed water for the lawn. You are maintaining his/her lawn on your own dime?

I would say that your car insurance is higher due to the fact that you are driving in a large metro area that has its share of traffic accidents due to the tourists who don't know where they are going. :-)

Surely much more traffic here than you ever saw in Johnson City.

Oviedo is a nice area. Always liked it out there. It used to be very very rural. It grew up indeed.

Good luck to you are yours!!! Enjoy your life in Florida.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 4kidsWow View Post
I just wanted to offer my feedback as a new Orlando resident. We moved here in January 2011 after 3 years of careful investigation and MUCH research and consideration about where to live. Thank you City-Data

My husband works from home, I stay at home with our 4 small children, and we had the entire country open to us. We love Florida, we love the Orlando metro area, and we love Oviedo. Here are some more specifics:

The last place we lived was a Johnson County, KS, specifically in Shawnee, KS right outside Kansas City. Prior to that we lived in Orange County, CA in a beautiful community called Foothill Ranch. Right before deciding on Orlando, our “runner-up” city was Raleigh, NC. We visited there, and even put an offer on a house there. That is a beautiful area too, but fortunately, everything worked out and we are in the Orlando area.

Here is what we find most appealing to us about our new neighborhood / city / State:

1. The weather. My husband and I both love warmer weather. We know it will get hot and humid here, but we are fine with the hot weather. January – May weather has been amazing. We loved watching the kids ride bikes in Feburary. We loved smiling at each other as the Midwest (and NC) was pounded with cold weather and storms in March this year. We love this weather, humidity and all.

2. The beaches. We are 45 minutes from Cocoa Beach. We have been several times, and we love the convenience of making a day trip to the beach. Jetty Park is our favorite beach so far, because with the logistics of 4 little kids, having a nearby bathroom and playground pretty much trumps everything else.

3. Disney. Yes, we do enjoy Disney. Living in Oviedo, we are about 50 minutes from Disney. Far enough away to not feel like we are in the middle of tourist-ville, but close enough we go for half day visits frequently. We took advantage of the yearly Disney passes for Florida residents, and we have definitely already gotten our money’s worth.

4. Money. The fact we pay no state income tax, the fact that when we do purchase a home, property tax is CHEAPER than what we were paying in KC, the fact that the sales tax is CHEAPER than what we were paying in KC, the fact that the cost of living is exponentially cheaper than California (where we thought we wanted to move). All of these financial considerations have been icing on the cake for us.

5. Education - college. As soon as we came to Florida I started thinking about going back to school. I was able to quickly navigate the school choices and I am very pleased with the college options local to the Orlando metro. I am enrolled at Seminole State for a few pre-requisites, and I will be finishing up at another school. There are plenty of higher educational options around to fit my needs.

6. Education – children. We lucked out in a very big way, and our children are all attending a part-time preschool which I LOVE. I made the phone calls to nearby preschools while still in KC. We did not even have confirmation on our rental home when I felt such a connection with the preschool. The director is wonderful, it is close by, everything about it is great for our family. The best thing has been the total surprise that Pre-K classes for 4/5 year olds are paid for by the state of Florida – no matter what a family’s income! That was a huge bonus for us, because our twins attended preschool for free since arriving in Florida in January. Who knew? . Also, I enrolled my twins in Kindergarten at a Seminole County public school, and every interaction with the school seems to be very pleasant and promising.

7. Neighborhood – Again, we were fortunate, and we landed into a GREAT neighborhood, a great cul-de-sac, and great neighbors. There seem to be many nice neighborhoods in our immediate area, and we feel like we are in a great area. We are 2 miles away from UCF, which is just across the county line into Orange County. There are so many restaurants, ice cream places, services that the college kids support, University Blvd has everything we could ever think of as far as restaurants.

8. House – We are renting a great house for our family. The best part is the screened in pool. We use the pool 4 or more times a week. My 5 year old twins were completely scared when we arrived in January, they are already swimming like fish! I love this house, I love this pool. Our rental house was available because the owners were relocated and did not even try selling their house in this market. I love the Florida palm tree in the front yard, the landscaping, even the little lizards that scurry around.

9. We are undecided about where we will actually purchase our home. We are considering a move to the Lake Nona area when we are ready to purchase a home. Oviedo is wonderful, but we are sometimes drawn to the amenities and new home features that are currently being built in that area. Also Lake Nona is closer to the airport for my husband’s frequent trips, and it is 2 miles from “Medical City” which will be great when I return to work (as a nurse).

10. And finally, the best part about Orlando to us is the people we have met. We have been so fortunate that we have made fast friends here. Our neighbors, the preschool director, a few people I am in class with. We really love Florida, and our happy attitude perhaps makes it easier to build positive relationships. We love the people we have met, and as we build our support and social network here, I feel so blessed with the people who I have already come to know.

The bad:

1. There are plenty of critters around. I have come to enjoy the lizards (they eat bugs, right?) which run around outside in our yard. We have our house treated for bugs, and I can’t imagine the quantities of bugs that would inhabiting our home if we did not have that bug spray service.

2. Utilities. The electric is about 30% higher than what we were paying in Kansas City. We keep our A/C at 75 degrees, which was a big adjustment from our former comfort temperature of 72 degrees. The WATER in our particular area is so high. Our water bills for our 2500 sq foot home, is $300 a month. I called Seminole County Water, where we pay our bill, and they said up to 80% of that is probably the irrigation system for the grass outside. We had the irrigation system evaluated, it was NOT working properly, and our water bills have gone down to about $220 a month. Our water bills in Kansas City (with irrigation) were $100 a month.

3. The grass. Oh my. I don’t know where to begin. Sod is expensive, watering the Sod is so expensive. Getting letters from an HOA for non-compliance is expensive. This is a pain. One more reason we are considering a neighborhood in Lake Nona where all the lawn care and irrigation is included.

4. Work-out / Lap swimming. I have not yet been able to find a health club that compares to the nicer ones I have seen in other areas. Also, I cannot find outdoor lap swimming that offers year round Masters swim team. Maybe these things are located more near downtown Orlando? I don’t know, but it is a source of slight frustration.

5. Car Insurance. Is so expensive! We are paying 30% higher here, and we dropped our coverage limits considerably. Other threads discuss this more in length, so I will leave it at that.

6. The Orlando airport (which we use frequently) is always very busy. Tons of tourists and very cranky kids. I sometimes have cranky kids too, but even still, it is a rough place to be.

7. I am sure there is more, but overall I am overwhelmed with how much we love it here. The day we left Kansas City, I would have done almost anything to undo our entire Florida plan. I was sick with worry and I didn’t think I could go through with it. Once we got here, we have just enjoyed one great thing after another. We haven’t looked back!

Please feel free to send me a message if you have any questions I may be able to answer. We feel like we are so fortunate to be here. Our hearts were set on California for so long, but with a family of 6 the California housing cost was just too prohibitive. Now that we are in Florida, I feel like we are exactly where we were meant to be.
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Old 10-27-2011, 07:07 PM
 
8 posts, read 22,461 times
Reputation: 12
Love the post, I was changing my mind about my move to Fla. I have to stay positive and live life, I just want to make sure I can find a job as a Phleb. Thanks for sharing your experience.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:33 AM
 
1 posts, read 736 times
Reputation: 10
Default the preschool you loved

hello,
would you please tell me the name of the preschool that you loved so much? i have been here for almost a year and just can't find one that i really love.
thanks,
evelyn
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Old 10-06-2012, 08:12 PM
 
Location: Windermere,FL
188 posts, read 243,695 times
Reputation: 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4kidsWow View Post
I just wanted to offer my feedback as a new Orlando resident. We moved here in January 2011 after 3 years of careful investigation and MUCH research and consideration about where to live. Thank you City-Data

My husband works from home, I stay at home with our 4 small children, and we had the entire country open to us. We love Florida, we love the Orlando metro area, and we love Oviedo. Here are some more specifics:

The last place we lived was a Johnson County, KS, specifically in Shawnee, KS right outside Kansas City. Prior to that we lived in Orange County, CA in a beautiful community called Foothill Ranch. Right before deciding on Orlando, our “runner-up” city was Raleigh, NC. We visited there, and even put an offer on a house there. That is a beautiful area too, but fortunately, everything worked out and we are in the Orlando area.

Here is what we find most appealing to us about our new neighborhood / city / State:

1. The weather. My husband and I both love warmer weather. We know it will get hot and humid here, but we are fine with the hot weather. January – May weather has been amazing. We loved watching the kids ride bikes in Feburary. We loved smiling at each other as the Midwest (and NC) was pounded with cold weather and storms in March this year. We love this weather, humidity and all.

2. The beaches. We are 45 minutes from Cocoa Beach. We have been several times, and we love the convenience of making a day trip to the beach. Jetty Park is our favorite beach so far, because with the logistics of 4 little kids, having a nearby bathroom and playground pretty much trumps everything else.

3. Disney. Yes, we do enjoy Disney. Living in Oviedo, we are about 50 minutes from Disney. Far enough away to not feel like we are in the middle of tourist-ville, but close enough we go for half day visits frequently. We took advantage of the yearly Disney passes for Florida residents, and we have definitely already gotten our money’s worth.

4. Money. The fact we pay no state income tax, the fact that when we do purchase a home, property tax is CHEAPER than what we were paying in KC, the fact that the sales tax is CHEAPER than what we were paying in KC, the fact that the cost of living is exponentially cheaper than California (where we thought we wanted to move). All of these financial considerations have been icing on the cake for us.

5. Education - college. As soon as we came to Florida I started thinking about going back to school. I was able to quickly navigate the school choices and I am very pleased with the college options local to the Orlando metro. I am enrolled at Seminole State for a few pre-requisites, and I will be finishing up at another school. There are plenty of higher educational options around to fit my needs.

6. Education – children. We lucked out in a very big way, and our children are all attending a part-time preschool which I LOVE. I made the phone calls to nearby preschools while still in KC. We did not even have confirmation on our rental home when I felt such a connection with the preschool. The director is wonderful, it is close by, everything about it is great for our family. The best thing has been the total surprise that Pre-K classes for 4/5 year olds are paid for by the state of Florida – no matter what a family’s income! That was a huge bonus for us, because our twins attended preschool for free since arriving in Florida in January. Who knew? . Also, I enrolled my twins in Kindergarten at a Seminole County public school, and every interaction with the school seems to be very pleasant and promising.

7. Neighborhood – Again, we were fortunate, and we landed into a GREAT neighborhood, a great cul-de-sac, and great neighbors. There seem to be many nice neighborhoods in our immediate area, and we feel like we are in a great area. We are 2 miles away from UCF, which is just across the county line into Orange County. There are so many restaurants, ice cream places, services that the college kids support, University Blvd has everything we could ever think of as far as restaurants.

8. House – We are renting a great house for our family. The best part is the screened in pool. We use the pool 4 or more times a week. My 5 year old twins were completely scared when we arrived in January, they are already swimming like fish! I love this house, I love this pool. Our rental house was available because the owners were relocated and did not even try selling their house in this market. I love the Florida palm tree in the front yard, the landscaping, even the little lizards that scurry around.

9. We are undecided about where we will actually purchase our home. We are considering a move to the Lake Nona area when we are ready to purchase a home. Oviedo is wonderful, but we are sometimes drawn to the amenities and new home features that are currently being built in that area. Also Lake Nona is closer to the airport for my husband’s frequent trips, and it is 2 miles from “Medical City” which will be great when I return to work (as a nurse).

10. And finally, the best part about Orlando to us is the people we have met. We have been so fortunate that we have made fast friends here. Our neighbors, the preschool director, a few people I am in class with. We really love Florida, and our happy attitude perhaps makes it easier to build positive relationships. We love the people we have met, and as we build our support and social network here, I feel so blessed with the people who I have already come to know.

The bad:

1. There are plenty of critters around. I have come to enjoy the lizards (they eat bugs, right?) which run around outside in our yard. We have our house treated for bugs, and I can’t imagine the quantities of bugs that would inhabiting our home if we did not have that bug spray service.

2. Utilities. The electric is about 30% higher than what we were paying in Kansas City. We keep our A/C at 75 degrees, which was a big adjustment from our former comfort temperature of 72 degrees. The WATER in our particular area is so high. Our water bills for our 2500 sq foot home, is $300 a month. I called Seminole County Water, where we pay our bill, and they said up to 80% of that is probably the irrigation system for the grass outside. We had the irrigation system evaluated, it was NOT working properly, and our water bills have gone down to about $220 a month. Our water bills in Kansas City (with irrigation) were $100 a month.

3. The grass. Oh my. I don’t know where to begin. Sod is expensive, watering the Sod is so expensive. Getting letters from an HOA for non-compliance is expensive. This is a pain. One more reason we are considering a neighborhood in Lake Nona where all the lawn care and irrigation is included.

4. Work-out / Lap swimming. I have not yet been able to find a health club that compares to the nicer ones I have seen in other areas. Also, I cannot find outdoor lap swimming that offers year round Masters swim team. Maybe these things are located more near downtown Orlando? I don’t know, but it is a source of slight frustration.

5. Car Insurance. Is so expensive! We are paying 30% higher here, and we dropped our coverage limits considerably. Other threads discuss this more in length, so I will leave it at that.

6. The Orlando airport (which we use frequently) is always very busy. Tons of tourists and very cranky kids. I sometimes have cranky kids too, but even still, it is a rough place to be.

7. I am sure there is more, but overall I am overwhelmed with how much we love it here. The day we left Kansas City, I would have done almost anything to undo our entire Florida plan. I was sick with worry and I didn’t think I could go through with it. Once we got here, we have just enjoyed one great thing after another. We haven’t looked back!

Please feel free to send me a message if you have any questions I may be able to answer. We feel like we are so fortunate to be here. Our hearts were set on California for so long, but with a family of 6 the California housing cost was just too prohibitive. Now that we are in Florida, I feel like we are exactly where we were meant to be.
and you have me, the best poster to grace this board ever
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Old 10-06-2012, 09:42 PM
 
130 posts, read 231,535 times
Reputation: 180
Great post and nice to see some positivity but that water bill makes no sense! How it can be that much a month seems crazy. One other big plus i assume is that arent state florida schools only a few k a yr for residents? Here in the northeast schools are running 30k a yr easy!
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:45 PM
 
57 posts, read 85,608 times
Reputation: 50
The Wesley Childhood Development Center is a fantastic school for young Children.

Wesley Child Development Center | First United Methodist Church of Orlando
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