U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia
 [Register]
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 08-15-2018, 01:56 PM
 
86 posts, read 124,431 times
Reputation: 29

Advertisements

Well, after a ton of research, we are finally going to take the plunge and move within the next 12 months from the Cape Cod area to Bucks County PA. Most likely New Hope, Doylestown or Washington's crossing. We are a gay male couple in our 50's retired. We have no kids, and absolutely love the charm of central Bucks along with the general accessibility to NYC and Philly. We currently get to Boston quite a bit and NYC from time to time. I must admit I have not been the Philly the city in probably 20 years. How does it compare to Boston? We also want to investigate Newtown Square. We are not nearly as familiar with NT Square, however some of the housing / shopping and areas amenities are intriguing to us. Will we be OK in Newtown Square as a professional retired gay couple in their 50's?? Overall we like fine dinning , theatre ( local and professional), the arts in general, gardening ,boutiques, antique shops, etc. Our general price range will be 450-700K. We realize property taxes overall are high, but we are sensitive to the variation in taxes in the area.


A few questions we have now that we are serious about the move and have a definite timeline-


1) What is Newtown Square like?? especially vs Newtown, Doylestown or New Hope??


2) Washington's crossing- What would be the nearest " quality hospital" in case of an emergency? How about a good grocery store etc? The area is beautiful but feels a bit remote. ?? Are there any quality condo / townhome communities that you suggest ?


3) New Hope- Is flooding still an issue? If so is there an area of NH that is especially susceptible? We had looked at the Waterworks condos a few months ago- do these flood? Any other nice communities you would suggest? We are ok with a townhome of small remodeled single family.


4) Doylestown- How is Doylestown Hospital in comparison to Abington? Would this be the hospital servicing Doylestown, Newtown and New Hope? Is there upscale shopping ( besides the cute downtown). How about access the all important Costco, Trader Joes etc? Do you find good primary care Doctors in the area? Any communities you would suggest for professionals?


5) Lastly the whole " stucco issue" really concerns us, so we want to make sure we avoid any issues. Are there any communities anyone is aware of that have water penetration issues due to stucco or manufactured stone exteriors that we should avoid? What is the current status of the issue? We recently looked at a townhome community behind Peddlers Village. The HOA provided the seller a letter to give to prospective buyers stating they would NOT allow any " testing" of the stucco by a home inspector. Needless to say we " passed" !


Any other insights for two guys excited to relo to PA would be appreciated!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-15-2018, 02:44 PM
 
883 posts, read 530,833 times
Reputation: 1223
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with Newtown Square (I live not too far from there, in Havertown), it sounds to me like Bucks County would be more your speed in terms of proximity to theater and the arts (local being the awesome Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope) the arts in general (New Hope again, also Mercer Museum in Doylestown), antique shops, more land for gardening, etc. Newtown Square is in Delaware County, which is generally a fairly dense inner-ring suburb of Philadelphia. Of course, Newtown Square is not going to be as dense as some of the towns in lower Delaware County that are closer in to the city, but it's still very dense compared to most of Bucks County. Of course, Bucks County being north of the city, there are also inner-ring burbs that fit the "dense" description in Lower Bucks too. But the drop-off from dense to not dense happens in Bucks County whereas I don't think I would classify any areas of Delaware County as not dense.


I'll leave it to others more familiar with the area to discuss the hospitals and such with you. Many people, myself included, have the impression that the hospitals in the city and the inner-ring suburbs are the only ones to write home about, but I must admit that I think that's a very outdated notion. While I'm sure there are still some crappy hospitals out there the further you get from the city, I also believe that many of them have come up in stature over the last decade or so.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 05:38 AM
 
86 posts, read 124,431 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyers Girl View Post
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with Newtown Square (I live not too far from there, in Havertown), it sounds to me like Bucks County would be more your speed in terms of proximity to theater and the arts (local being the awesome Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope) the arts in general (New Hope again, also Mercer Museum in Doylestown), antique shops, more land for gardening, etc. Newtown Square is in Delaware County, which is generally a fairly dense inner-ring suburb of Philadelphia. Of course, Newtown Square is not going to be as dense as some of the towns in lower Delaware County that are closer in to the city, but it's still very dense compared to most of Bucks County. Of course, Bucks County being north of the city, there are also inner-ring burbs that fit the "dense" description in Lower Bucks too. But the drop-off from dense to not dense happens in Bucks County whereas I don't think I would classify any areas of Delaware County as not dense.


I'll leave it to others more familiar with the area to discuss the hospitals and such with you. Many people, myself included, have the impression that the hospitals in the city and the inner-ring suburbs are the only ones to write home about, but I must admit that I think that's a very outdated notion. While I'm sure there are still some crappy hospitals out there the further you get from the city, I also believe that many of them have come up in stature over the last decade or so.


Thank you Flyers Girl!


I appreciate the insight. The more I read, I am thinking Bucks County is more what we are looking for as you suggest.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 07:18 AM
 
Location: New York City
6,237 posts, read 5,570,825 times
Reputation: 3325
First, all of those towns are very safe and friendly and you will not have any issues as an openly gay couple (especially New Hope) which is sort of like a little gay suburban haven.

Addressing Newtown Square - The area is beautiful, pretty homes and landscape, but no real downtown area. If you are looking there, I would suggest going a little further down the road to Media, which is a bustling walk able town with a great collection of restaurants, a theater and recreation.

New Hope and Doylestown are wonderful areas, I don't think the stucco issue will be a widespread problem that you have to worry about. Living on the water in New Hope is a tough call, that is something you should probably work with a realtor on.

I am not as familiar with Washington Crossing, but it is a bit further out.

Also, Philadelphia has changed quite a bit in 20 years, you will definitely enjoy your trips into the city.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 12:05 PM
 
86 posts, read 124,431 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpomp View Post
First, all of those towns are very safe and friendly and you will not have any issues as an openly gay couple (especially New Hope) which is sort of like a little gay suburban haven.

Addressing Newtown Square - The area is beautiful, pretty homes and landscape, but no real downtown area. If you are looking there, I would suggest going a little further down the road to Media, which is a bustling walk able town with a great collection of restaurants, a theater and recreation.

New Hope and Doylestown are wonderful areas, I don't think the stucco issue will be a widespread problem that you have to worry about. Living on the water in New Hope is a tough call, that is something you should probably work with a realtor on.

I am not as familiar with Washington Crossing, but it is a bit further out.

Also, Philadelphia has changed quite a bit in 20 years, you will definitely enjoy your trips into the city.

Thanks CPOMP! We will check out Media as well! We are planning an extended trip in September to look at places. We will also spend a couple of days in Philadelphia. Like I said it has been sometime since we have been there. I am hopeful we like the city, as we currently get into Boston often which is clean, booming and very safe city. I am thinking we should check out Rittenhouse SQ, Society Hill? Any other suggestions?


We do love New Hope and Doylestown ( also Newtown) . We have not found the " right" place as of yet...hoping to find something less cookie cutter, and with some style.


thanks again for the input!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 12:07 PM
 
1,114 posts, read 1,968,132 times
Reputation: 420
One thing to be mindful of, while Doylestown and New Hope have very nice downtowns, they are very far from Philadelphia, to the point where you would probably find that you rarely go there. So, if you are looking for access to "world class" restaurants, arts, hospitals, accessibility to an airport, etc, you are not going to have very good accessibility in those areas. Media, on the other hand, as recommended by cpomp above, is much closer to the city. Just something to consider, depending on your priorities.

Philadelphia is a great city, my favorite of any I have lived in, and I think you will find it similar to Boston in many ways.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 12:19 PM
 
86 posts, read 124,431 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Angus215 View Post
One thing to be mindful of, while Doylestown and New Hope have very nice downtowns, they are very far from Philadelphia, to the point where you would probably find that you rarely go there. So, if you are looking for access to "world class" restaurants, arts, hospitals, accessibility to an airport, etc, you are not going to have very good accessibility in those areas. Media, on the other hand, as recommended by cpomp above, is much closer to the city. Just something to consider, depending on your priorities.

Philadelphia is a great city, my favorite of any I have lived in, and I think you will find it similar to Boston in many ways.

Thanks Angus215. I am excited to re-explore Philadelphia. One concern I had was the crime statistics vs a Boston or even NY. Is most of the crime concentrated in certain areas of Phil that I should be careful of?
Also, I realize the towns in the burbs we are looking in are a bit of a distance from Philly, having the access is really important. Currently we are 1 hour from Boston ( no traffic) but we still get there often.
I like the country character of the suburbs however for our day to day living.


thanks VERY much for your insight!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Boston Metrowest (via the Philly area)
4,745 posts, read 7,848,885 times
Reputation: 4700
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewEnglander62 View Post
Thanks Angus215. I am excited to re-explore Philadelphia. One concern I had was the crime statistics vs a Boston or even NY. Is most of the crime concentrated in certain areas of Phil that I should be careful of?
Also, I realize the towns in the burbs we are looking in are a bit of a distance from Philly, having the access is really important. Currently we are 1 hour from Boston ( no traffic) but we still get there often.
I like the country character of the suburbs however for our day to day living.


thanks VERY much for your insight!
Congrats on your decision! A former Philly area-dweller now living in the Boston area chiming in.

I think folks have definitely been steering you in the right direction relative to various towns. Places like Media and Doylestown are fantastic, although another option you may want to consider is an area like Malvern, the outskirts of which will provide you with some lovely countryside options, a nice "village"-like town center nearby, regional rail access to Philadelphia, and Paoli Hospital is in reasonably proximity, which is pretty highly-regarded.

As far as Philadelphia, its comparison to Boston and more specific crime concern, I think it's important to bear in mind that it's still within a reivitalization phase (although a very impressive one). It has top-notch cultural amenities and institutions, which I'd certainly stack up against Boston. And personally I find it to have more of a creative edge compared to Beantown (Boston is truly a lovely city, but my experience is that Philly is generally less "stuffy" and that it's much better at letting its hair down).

That being said, Philly's current recovery/economic transition mode does translate into more persistent poverty, crime and blight issues compared to cities like Boston and NYC (all features that tend to correlate very highly). However, the most challenged neighborhoods tend to be heavily concentrated in the city's northern and far western neighborhoods. Not to discount these areas, because they certainly deserve as much attention as they can get, but for a (future) suburbanite visiting Center City for a night out, they might as well be on a different planet. Like any large city, "street smarts" will take you a long way.

Last edited by Duderino; 08-16-2018 at 03:05 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 03:00 PM
 
544 posts, read 463,028 times
Reputation: 555
If you are open to other areas I would suggest also looking in the Chestnut Hill neighborhood in the NW section of the City. I think it has what you are looking for. The lower property taxes in the City may be beneficial for you as well. Just a hunch that you may like the area.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-16-2018, 03:28 PM
 
36 posts, read 16,621 times
Reputation: 46
As a local, I will take a crack at your questions.

1) What is Newtown Square like?? especially vs Newtown, Doylestown or New Hope??

Can't comment on this one.

2) Washington's crossing- What would be the nearest " quality hospital" in case of an emergency? How about a good grocery store etc? The area is beautiful but feels a bit remote. ?? Are there any quality condo / townhome communities that you suggest ?

Hospital - Probably St Mary
Grocery - McCaffrey's in Newtown is a really nice local grocer. The farmers market in Newtown is also decent. Otherwise nearby it is the typical Giant, etc. If you want to drive a bit to Warrington or Princeton, Wegmans is a regional chain with massive stores and pretty much everything under the sun.

3) New Hope- Is flooding still an issue? If so is there an area of NH that is especially susceptible? We had looked at the Waterworks condos a few months ago- do these flood? Any other nice communities you would suggest? We are ok with a townhome of small remodeled single family.

Given that New Hope has flooded 3 times in recent memory, I would say floods are a risk if you are near the river. I believe the garage level of Waterworks flooded in at least one of the recent floods.

4) Doylestown- How is Doylestown Hospital in comparison to Abington? Would this be the hospital servicing Doylestown, Newtown and New Hope? Is there upscale shopping ( besides the cute downtown). How about access the all important Costco, Trader Joes etc? Do you find good primary care Doctors in the area? Any communities you would suggest for professionals?

Doylestown Hospital has come a long way in the past 30 years and is quite good - top rated for heart issues as I recall. I think Abington might still have the upper hand for Neo-natal care. I would think that folks in Newtown probably go to St Mary due to location.
Costco, Trader Joes, Whole Foods, Wegmans are all over in the Montgomeryville area which is a 15-20 minute drive on the new parkway. Upscale boutiques are sprinkled around Doylestown, Peddlers Village, New Hope and Newtown. Upscale brand stores will require a 45 minute trek to King of Prussia Mall, which has literally all of them - second largest mall in the country.

5) Lastly the whole " stucco issue" really concerns us, so we want to make sure we avoid any issues. Are there any communities anyone is aware of that have water penetration issues due to stucco or manufactured stone exteriors that we should avoid? What is the current status of the issue? We recently looked at a townhome community behind Peddlers Village. The HOA provided the seller a letter to give to prospective buyers stating they would NOT allow any " testing" of the stucco by a home inspector. Needless to say we " passed" !

From talking to realtors, Stucco homes are very difficult to sell in this area these days, with or without issues. So if you are thinking about the eventual sale as you are buying, you will want to consider that. If this is less of a concern, start by looking for the telltale 'tears' under the windows.
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:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 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 > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - 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 - Top