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Old 12-03-2010, 10:49 PM
 
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My husband is considering a position in Purchase, NY. We have 2 young elementary school kids, and are looking for excellent public schools, community oriented towns and a 30 min 1-way commute time by car. He's done the commute from NJ to NYC and we're tired of the 1-1.5 hr commute times each way.

Reading through the forums, it was suggested that in order to stay within a 30 min commute time, we would have to look at towns in Westchester County. Lower Westchester seems so much more expensive than the north end, and really just not feasible unless we live in a box. Are the property taxes and cost of living lower? Should we consider CT (Ridgefield, etc..) - commute seems over 45 min at least due to peak travel times (for more affordable towns)

Chappaqua was a highly recommended town for us to consider. Any thoughts on the commute to Purchase and the town? My husband is going out to Westchester next week, and we'd like him to take a look at a few towns during his stay. Our housing budget would be on the lower end (500K) as we are a single income household.
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Old 12-05-2010, 07:15 PM
 
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You can make it from Chappaqua to Purchase in around 30 minutes if you stay off 287. Take the back roads but even in these tough economic times you are going to have a hard time finding a house in Chappaqua for 500k that isn't a wreck. Consider Pleasantville too. Good town, good schools and a few houses on the market that are decent for in that price range.

CT has much lower taxes than equivalent Westchester towns but the schools vary widely.
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:15 AM
 
Location: Westchester County, NY
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I actually think upper Westchester is just as expensive as lower Westchester, except you get more house/land. At one time (maybe before the 80s/90s or so) it really was cheaper, but not now at least in a pure price sense.

One thing some consider is winter weather. There are times when it's snow/ice north of 287 and rain south of it......
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Old 12-06-2010, 05:30 PM
 
Location: Manhattan
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You may wish to look in the Katonah/South Salem area. There are many houses selling for $500,000 and less in those areas. Katonah has good schools and a beautiful, New England style village. The commute from those areas to Purchase in probably 20-30 minutes.
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:18 PM
 
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thanks for your comments. Will have my husband check out Katonah and Purchase. I will post this question on CT forum as well. Sounds like we may get more for our $ in CT since the property taxes are lower, then? Are schools that much better in Westchester County vs. CT?
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Old 12-06-2010, 07:51 PM
 
Location: Manhattan
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I don't know anything about the Connecticut school districts but you may wish to go to greatschools.org and look up school ratings and test scores.
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Old 01-05-2011, 07:40 PM
 
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Update on my original post: we will be moving for the position in Purchase very soon, and we are going to be making a trip together soon to look around Westchester and Fairfield county towns. With a SFH budget (We are also open to well maintained townhome/condo communities) a little higher at 600-700K, what other towns would you suggest besides the main ones (Scarsdale, Larchmont, Rye) that would at least fit the first 4 items on our wish list?

1) excellent/good solid public schools
2) 30 min commute time in rush hour traffic
3) somewhat culturally diverse or culturally accepting (Asian background here) and would prefer our child not to be the only minority in the entire elementary school.
4) active community/local downtown, ie; red and ed, public libraries, diverse local stores, community pool
5) does not have to be a train town
6) have well stocked grocery store in town (so you don't have to drive 15 min to get your weekly shopping done)

In general, would the non-train towns give us more house for our $? Would they have somewhat lower taxes? Browsing online, we noticed that there were some properties listed in Armonk that were decent but have taxes in the $15K range vs. $30K
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Old 01-06-2011, 04:20 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by minymom View Post

In general, would the non-train towns give us more house for our $? Would they have somewhat lower taxes? Browsing online, we noticed that there were some properties listed in Armonk that were decent but have taxes in the $15K range vs. $30K
Armonk has substantially lower taxes because IBM's headquartered there as well as some other businesses.
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