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Old 05-23-2010, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Wellsburg, WV
13 posts, read 19,406 times
Reputation: 10

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I've done alot of reading in here and elsewhere, and just haven't found all the info I'm looking for yet. We've decided that we're finally ready to get out of the rust belt, and pretty sure we're heading to Florida. As for as a job goes, I can get one just about anywhere in the country, and anywhere in the state of Florida really. I've got an offer in WPB already, and it seems really nice...but if after reading this you think maybe I should look elsewhere, we certainly aren't against it. We love Orlando, Ft. Lauderdale, Deltona...hell, just about everywhere we've ever been in Florida. On the flip side, we always loved visiting Savannah, GA - but hated it when we lived there.

Now, as far as WPB goes...the housing market is scaring me. I just can't believe how cheap housing looks. It's actually seemingly cheaper than here in the middle of nowhere, W.V., and I didn't think that was possible. I've read about the cancer scares in some places, and chinese drywall in others, but it seems to be pretty across the board. Of the research I've done so far, I really like what I've read about the schools in Jupiter...but I've also heard homeowners insurance is almost double on anything east of I-95?

So...coming from a small hole in the wall in the country in W.V. (and not being a city boy at all), where might one recommend I be looking for a house? Next year, my daughter will be just starting high school and my son will be in 8th grade, so schools are a big, big thing. I don't need alot of land, but I am a car guy, and do alot of work...so need at least a 2 car garage, and a neighborhood that won't mind such activity. With that said, we obviously can't do a condo or apartment either.

I'll be working on Okochobee blvd pretty close to I-95 if this all goes as planned also, so I'd like to be within 1/2 hour drive from there.

Also, what might I expect as far as living expenses (utilities, property taxes, any other weird fees or such?) I'm sure everything will be alot more there, but to cite an example. Here, we have a 1300sq/ft ranch home, valued @ 114K. Our property taxes are $800/year (460 for house, 340 for all 3 cars). Home insurance ~$300/year. Car insurance ~$200 month. Electric - $200/month. Gas - $60/month. Water/sewage - $120/month. State/local taxes ~$160/month (~$4200/month gross income). And that's it. No crazy occupational/school/whatever taxes that some places have (and they are seemingly pretty substantial in some places, hence me asking).

Ok, that's probably enough for now. Sorry for the lengthy post, but this is not something we've done before, and I'm extremely nervous about it. We'd be leaving all our family and friends behind to go somewhere we've never been or know anything about. Just trying to make sure we're covering all our bases and know exactly what we're getting into beforehand. Thanks so much in advance!!!
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Old 05-23-2010, 05:19 PM
 
17,288 posts, read 27,534,226 times
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What IS your price range?

If you like Jupiter schools, you may like Jupiter Farms and/or Palm Beach Country Estates, both in North County. Bigger lots, less restrictions (no HOA), West of 95, so insurance costs are cheaper as well.... you're still close to all Jupiter has to offer though, and within 30 mins or less of downtown WPB.
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Old 05-23-2010, 08:33 PM
 
Location: Wellsburg, WV
13 posts, read 19,406 times
Reputation: 10
It's tough to say for sure I guess. I predict I'll be making around 75-85K/year, but I also assume I'll be paying on my mortgage up here for awhile at the same time, so I don't want to stretch myself too thin. I was rather excited to see some of the houses I see listed on realtor.com for 100K-ish, as if they are as nice as they seem, we could live quite comfortably, even if we're still paying both mortgages. Realistically, I'd say (at least for now), no more than 200K.

Speaking of, is realtor.com the best place to find somewhere down there? I haven't talked to a realtor yet, and was kinda hoping I'd find someone who knew someone on one of the forums I frequent, to help them out. We've got a few local websites up here that tend to be a little easier to find some stuff on (as well as some realtors will only list on the local sites). Wasn't sure if maybe there was something like that down there as well.

As far as Jupiter schools go, I'm just going on what I've researched thus far. I'll definitely try to look into those 2 places. Is Okochobee BLVD near 95 considered downtown?

Thanks!
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:21 PM
 
Location: Palm Beach County
1,701 posts, read 4,044,765 times
Reputation: 634
Okee and East of 95 is pretty much downtown.
For the 200k range I would probably check out West Lake Worth as well as Jupiter. Nice area with high rated schools Not far from Downtown WPB either.
You can expect to pay more in property taxes at roughly 2% of the purchase price, less when you homestead.
The cancer cluster is in the acreage, and as far as Chinese Drywall goes almost all inspectors check for it.
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Old 05-24-2010, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Wellsburg, WV
13 posts, read 19,406 times
Reputation: 10
I'm sorry, what do you mean homestead?

Thanks!
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Old 05-24-2010, 07:40 PM
 
Location: earf
195 posts, read 547,060 times
Reputation: 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by skylinet View Post
Okee and East of 95 is pretty much downtown.
For the 200k range I would probably check out West Lake Worth as well as Jupiter. Nice area with high rated schools Not far from Downtown WPB either.
You can expect to pay more in property taxes at roughly 2% of the purchase price, less when you homestead.
The cancer cluster is in the acreage, and as far as Chinese Drywall goes almost all inspectors check for it.
What area are you talking about when you say the acreage? I just moved to south Florida and i'm presently shifting from Broward county to Palm Beach county. There seems to be less riff raff although there seems to be problems just around the corner anywhere in south florida. Also, how do home inspectors check the sheet rock. I'm well aware of the chinese drywall problem but i'm not aware of anyway it can be inspected other than looking for the symptoms.
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Old 05-24-2010, 08:19 PM
 
Location: Palm Beach County
1,701 posts, read 4,044,765 times
Reputation: 634
Florida property tax homestead exemption reduces the value of a home for assessment of property taxes by $50,000, so a home that was actually worth $100,000 would be taxed as though it was worth only $50,000. However, the second $25,000 of homestead coverage does not apply to the school portion of property taxes -- and only applies to the third $25,000 of a property's total just value (i.e., that portion of a property's value between $50,000-$75,000). Wiki explanation makes it easier to explain.

The acreage is an area of West Palm, there have been a few posts on it here if you search for it you will find more info. Or search for cancer cluster in the acreage. The Acreage Cancer Study - Home

Well if there is suspicion of CD they can pull the board or cut a sample and have it tested. There are neighborhoods that have been known to have the issue more so than others. It could have also been used to do repairs as well though so make sure before purchasing a home you use a reputable inspector. I had a home where an 85 year old woman was living in for years and it turned out there was like 2 slabs of CD in the kitchen area. Didn't effect her, just blackened some copper underneath the kitchen sink and some outlets.
If a whole house has it though, it smells like rotten eggs and can cause respiratory issues. A seller/realtor could get in a lot of trouble if it was known and wasn't disclosed.
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