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Old 10-21-2018, 01:48 PM
 
215 posts, read 203,096 times
Reputation: 350

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
I'm with you, there. The problem is, that you won't get "upscale" or "somewhat upscale" in WA or OR. It's the "upscale" that's costing you, in CA, to some extent. You can't afford "somewhat upscale". You might find that in the greater Seattle area, but there you're running into skyrocketing RE prices and rents, that will soon reach the Bay Area's level.

The other thing is, frankly, that parts of the Bay Area have beautiful architecture (this goes for Larkspur & Mill Valley, as well as large parts of Berkeley, parts of Oakland, and SF (mediterranean, high-end Arts-and-Crafts period, etc.). It's easy to take that for granted, until suddenly, you're someplace where it doesn't exist. This is the Northwest. Sorry--brutal truth; much of it looks shabby. This goes for most residential areas of Seattle, Portland, or almost anywhere. In Santa Fe & Taos, you don't have the shabbiness, because traditional adobe architecture styles are the standard. That sort of harmonious architectural look is rare in the US, though.

So, I invite you to consider Port Townsend. It has lots of open, undeveloped space scattered around town, so not urban-feeling, at all. Population: 5000. There's a picturesque section of town with old Victorians. The town bans chain stores, btw. For people who MUST have a big-box store to shop at, another small town about 1/2 hr. away has those. Pt T is on both Puget Sound on one side, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca on another side. Beautiful views, and the Olympic National Park on another side. I don't know if you're looking for something closer to a major urban area, but that will cost you. If you need that, consider Olympia, and surrounding areas. (Pt T is in the Olympic Mountain rain shadow. Olympia gets a lot more rain.)

One caveat, is that the NW has been having issues in the summer, with heavy smoke from fires in British Columbia. But fires will catch up with you anywhere, on the West Coast. The Bay Area (except for Santa Rosa) has been fortunate to avoid that so far, but I'm afraid that phenom is coming soon to a community near you. Pray for rain.

Again, you're not going to find anything like Larkspur or Mill Valley, or anywhere in Marin anywhere else in the US, unless you go to a quaint historic upscale-ish town in the NE, and there, you'll be dealing with snowy winters, and hot, humid summers. IDK, maybe Boston? But the winters have been harsher in the NE the last few years, causing some people to migrate to WA in search of milder winters. So, you'll have to compromise. You won't get your exact dream place transplanted to a cheaper location. Have you looked at Humboldt County?
Humboldt County? Do you know something about Humboldt County I don't know, because that sounds like trailer park central to me! I realize I've just been spoiled. I've lived in Larkspur for so long, I can't imagine not seeing the bay, the mountains and City all at the same time! I'm at true Marin elitist, I don't even like crossing the bridge into San Francisco! That's even too ghetto for me! LOL. But alas, I make around $100,000 a year, and didn't do what I should have done in my early years to set myself up to make more, so I guess I don't deserve a place like Marin. So, I'll have to make due with my options. For as long as I work, I can continue to live in the house I'm living in. However, you have to work for my department in order to live there. Once you retire, you're on your own. Since I will be approaching retirement soon, I have to start thinking about where I'm going to live permanently. Actually, Port Townsend doesn't sound or look bad at all. It's a little smaller population than I would like, only because I'm single and don't want to remain that way for the rest of my life. LOL. So it would be nice being someplace where meeting single women wouldn't be like finding the lost ark of the covenant. However, I guess there's a bar and a karaoke night everywhere!
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Old 10-21-2018, 01:56 PM
 
215 posts, read 203,096 times
Reputation: 350
I honestly wish there was some way I could qualify for a low income house in Marin County, even Novato, but I don't think a single person would qualify unless they made $60,000 a year or less. I think what I'll do is just ensure my credit is pristine, save up as much money as I possibly can, and wait out the next 3 to 5 years until retirement, hoping for some kind of downturn in real estate, then grab the first one bedroom shack in Mill Valley I can find! LOL.
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Old 10-21-2018, 03:44 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
80,931 posts, read 73,981,605 times
Reputation: 80551
Well, OP, you could save to buy a condo for retirement, a townhome somewhere in Marin. You should very attached to your views of the Bay, etc. (I don't blame you). Not all of Humboldt is derelict; McKinleyville is a family-oriented place full of professionals, like the university faculty, etc. I mentioned it, because it's beautiful, on the coast, and more affordable than the Bay. Pt T has single women of all ages, and there are other communities nearby, too. And its population is growing.

But it sounds like you're facing the fact that you're impossibly attached to the north Bay. You could look at parts of Sonoma. There are redwoods there, too. There's even coast, in the north parts. Let me know what you decide, eventually. I'm debating these things, myself.
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Old 10-21-2018, 07:40 PM
 
4,694 posts, read 2,063,639 times
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Champagne tastes on a beer budget... I think you are going to have to make some compromises. There is a good chance we will go into a recession in the next 2 years. That will probably lower prices a bit. Although, not in the better communities. What about an expat community in Mexico? You may be able to buy down there. I think one buys a long term lease which would be longer than your natural life. Or, I'd go back to SoCal. Keep in mind, upscale communities are going to be expensive no matter where you go. Again, you need to compromise. Good luck.
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Old 10-21-2018, 08:19 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
80,931 posts, read 73,981,605 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakformonday View Post
Champagne tastes on a beer budget... I think you are going to have to make some compromises. There is a good chance we will go into a recession in the next 2 years. That will probably lower prices a bit. Although, not in the better communities. What about an expat community in Mexico? You may be able to buy down there. I think one buys a long term lease which would be longer than your natural life. Or, I'd go back to SoCal. Keep in mind, upscale communities are going to be expensive no matter where you go. Again, you need to compromise. Good luck.
Well, if you're throwing those options out there, why not San Luis Obispo, Cambria, or Morro Bay? But a better compromise, IMO, would be a townhome in Marin somewhere, or Sonoma. Gualala? Ft. Bragg??
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Old 10-21-2018, 09:22 PM
 
215 posts, read 203,096 times
Reputation: 350
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Well, OP, you could save to buy a condo for retirement, a townhome somewhere in Marin. You should very attached to your views of the Bay, etc. (I don't blame you). Not all of Humboldt is derelict; McKinleyville is a family-oriented place full of professionals, like the university faculty, etc. I mentioned it, because it's beautiful, on the coast, and more affordable than the Bay. Pt T has single women of all ages, and there are other communities nearby, too. And its population is growing.

But it sounds like you're facing the fact that you're impossibly attached to the north Bay. You could look at parts of Sonoma. There are redwoods there, too. There's even coast, in the north parts. Let me know what you decide, eventually. I'm debating these things, myself.
I'll definitely keep you posted.

Well, the truth is Marin County is more than just redwoods. There's just a mixture of everything you could want all-in-one pretty much central location. Redwoods, Beach, Bay, mountains, City, Village feel, hell, even a very small amount of ghetto and Barrio if that's what you like. All literally in one area. But like they said, champagne taste on a beer budget, so I know I'm going to have to compromise.

I would have no problem living in a townhouse, but a Marin they're pretty expensive as well. I'm guessing you're looking at over $500,000 for one of those, right?
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:35 AM
 
Location: SF, CA
1,670 posts, read 802,375 times
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The Central Coast of CA might be a possibility for you... San Luis Obispo is an attractive little city.... it's gotten expensive, I've read, but surely it's still a bargain compared to Marin.
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:34 AM
 
215 posts, read 203,096 times
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I was checking out properties yesterday and Oxnard. Now don't get me wrong, I am not comparing Oxnard to Marin County! LOL. However, that area overall is pretty nice, and I was seeing condos in the $350,000 range. Now, I don't know if those are located in a nice area, or across the street from the Crips, since I don't know the area well. But it was still surprising to see what appeared to be nice looking condos and what I thought was an expensive area, relatively reasonably priced.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:57 PM
 
836 posts, read 590,857 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troy Troy View Post
I was checking out properties yesterday and Oxnard. Now don't get me wrong, I am not comparing Oxnard to Marin County! LOL. However, that area overall is pretty nice, and I was seeing condos in the $350,000 range. Now, I don't know if those are located in a nice area, or across the street from the Crips, since I don't know the area well. But it was still surprising to see what appeared to be nice looking condos and what I thought was an expensive area, relatively reasonably priced.
If you like Oxnard, you should check out Ventura. Depending on location, condos there can be around the same to a little more. Ventura is considered nicer than Oxnard, but in no way compares to Marin. Ventura is one place we've considered for retirement, but just waiting for the right time and to make sure we want to be there. It has a nice Main Street, but as most cities in CA has the same homeless problems in certain areas.
Some condos are still below 2005/2006 levels which can be good or bad depending on how you look at it. Bad that the condos have not recovered, but good that at least you're not paying what someone did back in 2005.
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:03 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
80,931 posts, read 73,981,605 times
Reputation: 80551
San Rafael has townhomes in the $300K - $350K range.
https://www.realtor.com/realestatean...-05639?view=qv
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