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Old 06-09-2008, 12:47 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,120 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi all, I am a working professional (Home office in Ft Washington, working in Conshohocken) and am married with a 2 month old son.
We are looking at properties to buy preferably in Lower Gwynedd, Blue Bell, Hatboro/Horsham, Upper Dublin area with a budget of a max of $380K. In this budget all I can find is a townhome all the above areas. If I have to look at single family homes then in that price Lansdale/hatfield is an option. I have read/heard that Lansdale may not be the best places to raise a family (some ppl have mentioned it as a blue collar town). We are not sure whether to go for a good sized Single Fam. Home in Lansdale/Hatfield or then go for a similar sized townhome in Lower Gwynedd or so. Single Family homes in LG, H/H or Upr Dublin are very small in my price range. cant make up my mind. Anybody went through this? Share experience or have opinions suggestions?
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Old 06-09-2008, 02:10 PM
 
1,623 posts, read 5,967,012 times
Reputation: 449
If you are renting, continue to rent until at least Christmas, if not next Spring...the economy is in the crapper and if you don't need to move right now, you should stay put. Prices have another 5-10% to fall in my opinion and foreclosures and layoffs and gas prices will have even more of a deflating impact on the housing market...just bide your time.

If you have to buy, buy in the best district you can afford. I have listed below districts in Montco and Bucks up to 100th in the state. This is based upon a Pittsburgh Business Times 2007 ranking of districts based upon test scores for different grade levels and other data...it is quite comprehensive and gives a good picture of the district overall, not just how the high school performs, for instance. Choose the best one you can and you should be good to go.

I would say town homes are far less desirable at resale time than singles or carriage homes...look at either those before a town home. Collegeville was recently designated as "best bang for the school buck" in this area by a real estate web site.

Here's a ranked list of districts:

Central Bucks
Lower Moreland
Upper Dublin
New Hope Solebury
Council Rock
Methacton
Abington
Jenkintown
Hatboro Horsham
Palisades
Wissahickon
North Penn
Souderton
Colonial
Qakertown
Springfield, Montco
Perkiomen Valley
Cheltenham
Spring Ford
Upper Merion
Penn Ridge
Upper Moreland
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:11 AM
 
Location: Glenside, PA
48 posts, read 163,389 times
Reputation: 18
If you do end up looking in Lansdale/Hatfield, don't worry they are both fine places to raise a family. North Penn school district is very good, although if you look at the rankings provided above maybe not as good as some closer in towards the city.
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:46 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
33,076 posts, read 61,908,019 times
Reputation: 55506
Is there something wrong with blue-collar towns?
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:18 AM
 
1,623 posts, read 5,967,012 times
Reputation: 449
Well, if you don't mind predominantly white, racist, sexist, anti gay, generally conservative, then no. But if you do, then yes. These are the folks who voted for Hillary Clinton in the PA primary, mainly because she is not black.

I don't understand why everyone takes offense at some people not wanting to live in a blue collar town, which has more to do with a mentality than what the people actually do for a living...my family and lots of my friends and their families are blue collar, and while I love them, I am acutely aware of their intolerant views.

I love spending time with them but would I want like to live next door to them? Not really. Besides they also tend to party more and place less value on education so they don't get involved with or are informed about the local schools etc or tend to use Catholic schools so they don't really care what is going on in the public schools anyway. I look at the Catholic school usage as another way to keep their kids segregated from people/views they see as undesirable.

This is my friends mind you, but its pretty much all of them, even the ones with college degrees who have grown up with this mentality. So while I would and do say there is nothing wrong with people who work with their hands, etc. I would also say that the unfortunate "us vs. them" mentality that often goes along with those jobs is fairly universal and not their finest attribute.

Last edited by orrmobl; 06-11-2008 at 08:35 AM..
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Old 06-11-2008, 12:14 PM
 
Location: West Mount Airy
160 posts, read 740,708 times
Reputation: 47
You might want to check out Fort Washington, Dresher and parts of Ambler. For 380K you should be able to get a home in all of those areas, but make sure you drive to the area you want in Ambler. The schools are pretty good, I think Wissahicken is Ambler and Upper Dublin is Fort Washington and Dresher. Maple Glen is another area, but I doubt you'll find a single home in that area. Blue Bell, though difficult, you really might be able to find something. Before looking in Lansdale, check out North Wales. It's the same school district but closer to Montgomeryville mall and much nicer
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Old 06-11-2008, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Bucks County, PA
5 posts, read 11,832 times
Reputation: 10
Default Hatboro Homes

In Hatboro you should be able to find a cape that is in that price range. With today's market, I would think a 3 bedroom 2 bath cape right in center of Hatboro would be reasonably priced and it's a charming area with a cute little down town area.

Good Luck in your search.
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