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Old 08-04-2009, 08:04 AM
87 posts, read 305,523 times
Reputation: 22


We are moving there, too and have extensively researched the area for our needs. Two kids, two dogs and similar price range.
Here are our contenders:
Riverview, large area to look in but nice places among those communities.
Apollo Beach, like it, up and coming soon but don't like the smoke stacks in view.
Land o Lakes and Wesley Chapel, seem to have the better schools and Pasco County has lower property taxes.
Potentially looking at Lutz or Odessa but have narrowed it down to either the Southshore area (Apollo Beach or Riverview) for the proximity to water and fishing or Land o Lakes and Wesley Chapel for lower taxes and schools. Either way the schools will be better than where we are now and I think it will come down to what we will find in a house and community. Do the math on your monthly payments rather than the price of the home. Some communities have higher fees like CDD's and HOA and others have less fees but higher home prices.
Good Luck!
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Old 08-04-2009, 08:24 AM
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Thanks DDJJ. Good luck in your search as well. I agree with you, just on research alone, I'm leaning more towards Wesley Chapel and Land o Lakes. Not quite as close to the water as I would like but the schools and taxes are drawing me towards there.
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Old 08-04-2009, 12:40 PM
Location: East Tennessee
3,927 posts, read 10,602,410 times
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At this time on the retail market in Hillsborough, Pasco & Pinellas, there are ~250 single family homes with at least 4 bedrooms & 2 baths over 2500 square feet under $300K. Many of these have a pool. If I add the pre-foreclosures, double the numbers. In addition, builders are offering incentives and reduced pricing on new construction in the far north and south portions of Hillsborough and Pasco. That's the good news. Pinellas is the closest to the beach, but has the fewest homes (22) and no new construction within your budget.

The bad news is schools. Below are the top rated schools in Hillsborough County from the 2008/2009 testing period. I added the general geographic area where they're located for your convenience.

Elementary - Bevis (Lithia), Roosevelt (S. Tampa), McKitrick (Lutz)
Middle - Martinez (Lutz), Terrace Community (NE Tampa/USF area), Randall (Lithia)
High - Newsome (Lithia), Sickles (NW Tampa/Citrus Park), Plant (S. Tampa)

Be careful with school boundaries. Because of the Classroom Reduction Act, there are 7 high schools with boundary changes for this next school year. You can lookup an address and see the school assignments here --> Untitled Document. The new Steinbrenner High School in Lutz is scheduled to open this year and promises to be very good. It's located beside McKitrick Elementary and Martinez Middle.

I'm not sure when you're planning to move, but school starts this year on August 25.

You can find more information for Hillsborough County Schools here --> Hillsborough County Public Schools-Tampa Florida.

Below are the top rated schools in Pasco County from the 2008/2009 testing period. As before, I added the general geographic area where they're located for your convenience.

Elementary - Longleaf (New Port Richey), Trinity (New Port Richey), Pineview (Land O Lakes)
Middle - Seven Springs (New Port Richey), Pineview (Land O Lakes), Dr. John Long (Wesley Chapel)
High - Land O Lakes (LOL), Sunlake (Land O Lakes), Wiregrass (Wesley Chapel)

You can read more about Pasco County Schools here --> Pasco County Schools.

You can research the Florida school grading & rating system on the Florida Department of Education's website here --> http://fcat.fldoe.org/

Last edited by TampaKaren; 08-04-2009 at 01:45 PM..
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Old 08-05-2009, 12:42 PM
2 posts, read 3,142 times
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Tundra. Welcome to Tampa. I have lived here pretty much all my life and have lived in several areas. My recommendation would be to look in the areas of Brandon and New Tampa. These are the suburban areas of town and have new construction homes and the average age of houses are fairly new. One drawback is that of course there is traffic if you are driving into downtown which i do everyday. It has gotten better throughout the years however and ranges from 30minutes on great days and 45 minutes on other days. Also, homes in this area will be right around your price range. Schools are relatively new in this area and are decent. There is a bike trail in New Tampa. The beaches are about an hour away, but if you do not plan on going everyday, i can not imagine this being a problem. there are also alot of opportunities for kids to join in on sports and kids clubs in the New Tampa area.
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