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Old 12-28-2006, 12:34 PM
8 posts, read 61,451 times
Reputation: 15


Hi everyone. I had previously posted regarding the Temecula border/Sage community area. I'm originally from Chicago and finishing college on the east coast. I will be moving to Southern California at the end of the summer (after graduation), and I will also have my little brother living with me. He will be finishing high school.

I have thought about Hemet, Sage, Temecula, Murrieta, and Fallbrook areas. I am aware that these are some of the more pricier towns. I started my house hunt about a month ago. As a future new home buyer, and soon to be graduate, realtors have bombarded me with info and every place seems to be a "perfect community". As a person who has never lived there, any comments would be great for me.

I have a few questions for anyone who might have an opinion on these areas...
1. Which towns are favored the most, and subdivisions?

2. What are the high schools districts like? Do families have a choice of what high school a child can go to within a given district (I am unaware of how SoCal school districts work, some towns have three high schools)?

3. I was interested in homes on Sage Rd/Hidden Valley Rd (Hemet/Temecula area). The homes seemed more reasonable with acreage (something we do not get in Chicago), but another poster mentioned something about drug problems (i.e. crack houses) in this area. Is this a safe area? Is this the general consensus?

4. I was considering Lake Elsinore also, but I heard some parts are not so good. Are there any towns or areas that should just be avoided in Southwest Riverside County?

I am just looking for a good home with a little space to breathe. Being from Chicago, I would love to have a house on at least 1/3 of an acre, and a decent high school for my brother.

Thank you to anyone who responds, I really appreciate it.
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Old 12-28-2006, 03:07 PM
Location: Chandler, AZ
289 posts, read 1,139,022 times
Reputation: 273
I lived in Temecula from 2002-2004. I just responded on a thread below about Temecula so you can read that if you like.

As far as good towns, bad towns, I'll tell it like I see it and let anyone yell at me that wants to.

Temecula and Murrieta are clean, middle class white, and neither one has much of any "bad part of town".

I went into Hemet often because my dad was in a nursing home there and I can best describe it as flat and boring and white trash. I wouldn't live there.

I lived in French Valley (zip code for realtor searches is 92596 - French Valley is an unofficial name), between Hemet and Temecula (much closer to Temecula) and it was boring, very white, all new homes in endless marching tract style, but all safe and no bad areas.

Never heard of Sage. Fallbrook is fine, somewhat rural for the most part. Probably more expensive being closer to San Diego.

Lake Elsinore used to have a drug reputation. Growing up in San Diego I just knew it was not a good place. I'm not really familiar with it these days but I remember they were building lots of tract houses to the east of it, so there may be good parts and bad parts now.

Winchester is north of Temecula by 15 miles and west of Hemet and is rural and very small and probably not too expensive. Keep in mind that when I lived there all the French Valley tract houses were officially in Winchester as far as the post office was concerned, and they are really not connected and are 10 miles apart, so this may be confusing...make sure to map any location in the 92596 zip code because it's so big.

Oh, I just looked and Sage Rd is really rural and out east of French Valley. If you're going that rural, you should be fine almost anywhere. That said, of course you could be on one acre right next to the crack house on the next acre. In general, the closer you are to Temecula the better because then you can go to the stores there and not in Hemet.

I left Temecula because the whole area is beige tract houses and is lacking in personality. That is why that whole area was pretty much ignored until about 10 years ago when San Diegans "discovered it" as a cheap long commute and a way to get the big house in the burbs with an HOA. I moved to Southwest Austin. Here you have an area with personality, houses all different, lush foresty area, and plenty of places to get a house with 1/3 acre for $150k+ less than Temecula.
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Old 01-11-2007, 09:09 PM
8 posts, read 61,451 times
Reputation: 15
tashina, Thank you so much for replying. Its good to get the opinion of someone who has lived in the areas and knows them very well. I have been looking more at the De Luz section, Norco, and Winchester.
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Old 01-13-2007, 03:26 PM
20 posts, read 118,224 times
Reputation: 15
Tashina explained it really well.
The Murrietta/Temecula area is going to be a little more affluent than the other areas you mentioned. It's not really all that attractive. People flocked there merely because of the cheap housing prices.
The 'sage' area I'm not familiar with, but if you go east from temecula you're gonna get dry, desert surroundings.
I am persuaded that california schools in general are going to disappoint you, being from back east. My siblings graduated from Perris High School and went on to illustrious careers in food service. <:}

Do you have to move to the Inland Empire? Your job location will probably help you decide where to look.

Good Luck!
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Old 01-14-2007, 07:43 PM
1 posts, read 11,485 times
Reputation: 12
Default Saw Fallbrook......eeehhhhh

I saw you mention Fallbrook. I moved to Fallbrook 3 years ago. There are a lot of *for sale* signs here. Luckily I am renting, so it will be easier for me to leave. This town is not incorporated and does not have its own police force; it is patrolled by the SD County sheriff. Good luck having them show up if you call. Five times my truck has been broken into. I've had to call police 7 times in 3 years, once the officer did not show yet lied to dispatch. Another time I called in a child welfare check because a neighbor gave beer to a 2yo & she was tipsy. The responding officers went to my neighbor's then came to my door and said, "it is OK, they are having a B'day party". My drunken neighbors then threatened to kill me because the officers came to my door-- making it obvious that I called. And the baby stayed and partied on. Stupid cops. Also, I don't live on the bad side of town--this place is so small that you can paint the whole place with one brush stroke. And there is only one chain grocery store and no department stores. You have to drive 20 miles in either direction--Oceanside or Temecula -- to shop. I came here from Los Angeles. And I am really surprised how mouthy the youth are here. In LA, kids have a fear because they could easily be seriously hurt if they dis...respect someone. Not Fallbrook. A lot of kids here are just to big for their back-woods britches. And there is serious crime here,too. Just last week a murder. But there is a wierd facade here in the "friendly village" of "never in Fallbrook". kinda creepy. I know no place is perfect. I'm moving my family to Hemet. At least there is stores there.

Last edited by UrbanEx; 01-14-2007 at 07:52 PM.. Reason: LA = Los Angeles. [not Louisianna]
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Old 01-18-2007, 09:01 PM
7 posts, read 33,735 times
Reputation: 13
I too am a Fallbrook inhabitant and you can tell that this town was once wonderful but has slowly done down the tubes as migrants have taken over. I listen to mariachi music blaring through my paper thin walls until 3 am some mornings. There aren't enough police, and there are way too many cars. If you want someplace nice with a little land and room to breathe, go to Montana or Tennesee or some other place more affordable. Don't like the nice weather fool ya - California isn't all it's cracked up to be.
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Old 01-21-2007, 04:37 PM
Location: So Cal
39 posts, read 126,268 times
Reputation: 29
Default Don't bother with Hemet and San Jacinto

I am the wife of a Realtor. I've lived in Hemet tooooo long. If we didn't have child custody garbage with his ex we wouldn't be here. Last week we had 3 phone calls from Jr. High and High School Principals telling us about 3 separate kidnapping attempts in the Valley. Hemet and San Jacinto are the joint armpits of Riverside county. The California Parole Board has decided in its infinite wisdom to parole every pedophile/drug addict/gangbanger in California to our valley due to the low rents. Check the megan's law website for yourself. Also, Section 8 Housing is alive and well in our valley. The rule for parolee's released to Hemet/San jacinto is that they can't leave the city limits unless they are going to the rehab/half way facility in neighboring Winchester. So they have permission to visit there but are not made to stay in the program. So it doesn't help at all.
As far as housing prices go in our valley (And it is a valley because it takes 45 minutes just to get to any of the freeways to go anywhere else) they are totally insane. In 5 years my 4 bd 2 ba house has gone from 92K to 312K. So if I sell I still can't upgrade to anything comprable for less than 450K. There is nothing for the teenagers to do except be bored, do drugs, or cause trouble. It really is a shame. We all do our shopping out of town. We have a small I mean mall but its not much.
We have our very own gang taskforce. We have tagging on everything including real estate signs. We had a sign stolen just yesterday. A Kid was in a hit and run drove their car up on the curb in front of my house dumped it there and took off running. We don't live in the ghetto either. The schools over crowded. Not lockers, My 12 year old is hauling 30lbs of books to school everyday. My honor roll student didn't get a scholarship from Hemet High because those are given to the Doctors kids that can afford to send their kids to Yale for summer school. In every small town you have small town politics our town is old boys network at its best. The Doctors and Lawyers rule here. The hospital system sucks here as well. The doctors here are literally only practicing. My mother in law broke her leg an orthopedic surgeon reset it when the cast came off her foot was to the right and her knee was facing to the left. When I complained I was told that at 70 years old she was old anyway and as long as she could stand on it he didn't care. If a bond measure doesn't pass one year they just put it back on the ballet again the next year. Miracle upon miracle it always passes the second time.
So if I had my way it would be South Carolina here I come.
Can anyone tell me which is better Columbia, South Carolina or Charleston, South Carolina???
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Old 04-01-2007, 08:44 PM
Location: Temecula
239 posts, read 661,336 times
Reputation: 384
Falbrook and Temecula are nice. Hemet and Elsinore both suck quite frankly. Sage is just a rural version of Hemet near Hemet. Hemet has little to offer, its just a vast flat, hot, doesn't have much to offer. Elsinore, has more crime, and is pretty run down, even the newer areas don't have much to offer. Good luck!
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Old 04-01-2007, 10:45 PM
122 posts, read 790,637 times
Reputation: 77
Just out of pure curiosity, not trying to be facetious--
But how in the world can you afford to buy a house, being a college graduate??? Most college grads and soon-to-be grads I know can barely afford to rent, let alone buy.
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Old 04-01-2007, 10:59 PM
3,035 posts, read 14,434,974 times
Reputation: 915
With the CA Real Estate market in an unarguable decline, purchasing a home in that area now is really not a good idea. While I don't think it's bad and enjoy stopping for a soda there on my way across the mountain to Palm Springs, it is and has always been a place that people live because they 'have to', not want to. In declining markets like what we are seeing now, this place (and even Fallbrook) is full of red flags. Be careful.
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