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Old 07-24-2007, 11:43 AM
 
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Hello,

My family and I will be relocating to Westchester county where we think we will spend about 2 years.

Our work will be in Somers. We are used to live in big cities so we would like to find a place that is both not far from work but with easy commuting to the city , so at least during the weekends we will be able to do some sightseeing!!!. What towns would you recomend to live in, with nice shopping facilities?.

None of us knows the area. We live in Europe and we will have to chose where to visit possible new homes from here.....so your advice will be highly appreciated. I am reading about different locations on the net but I would rather get some advice from people who are living in the area.

Another question is about renting. I am visiting some real estate web pages but most of the houses are to buy, is it not that usual to rent in the USA?

Thank you very much in advance for your help.
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Old 07-24-2007, 01:55 PM
 
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if you are going to be working in Somers and want to live pretty close in Westchester, I would reccomend Mt. Kisco or Bedford Hills - both nice towns. Katonah as well. Bedford Hills is probably more expensive. Yorktown or Golden's Bridge are decent too and probably less expensive. These will all be quick rides to Somers for you. From all these towns you can take a train (Metro-North) directly into NYC (about an hour).

When you say "nice shopping facilities"...depends on what you mean. Mt. Kisco has a lot of big retail shops in town, Bedford Hills has more "unique" smaller specialty shops (considered very nice). But, if you want a real big American "mall" - you have to go down to White Plains (again, an easy train ride or drive down I684). Also, Greenwhich, CT which is close is considered to be a very high-scale shopping town.

In terms of renting vs buying - yes, in America we like to own our homes. Renting is typically only for college kids or very young professionals. The theory is if you have enough $ to buy, it doesn't make sense to rent because at least buying is (one hopes) an investment. But, if you really are going to only be here for 2 years, then renting probably makes more sense becuase then you don't have to pay taxes and real estate closing costs. However, it will probably be very difficult to rent a real "house" if that's what you want - but an apartment should be no problem. Most real estate agencies that look to show homes for purchase will have agents that do rentals as well. You can call the local Century 21 or Houlihan Lawrence. Also check realtor.com, the New York Times and the New York Journal News for real estate listings. They should all list rentals.
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Old 07-24-2007, 02:51 PM
 
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Hi Cjim,

Thanks a lot for your answer. I will have a look at those cities you have mentioned. When I said nice shopping facilities I was not talking about high scale shopping, but more about buying groceries and food...It will be my first time in the USA so for the moment, I would not know what a real american mall is though I am eager to visit one!!!

I think it is really not worth buying a house for a max 2 year stay. If we rent, we are free to go more easily once the work is completed and we might avoid paying some taxes. We also heard some rumours about prices going down in USA, though it is the same in Europe and I still have not seen any real price decrease. But of course, it depends on what we can find. We have children and we have definitely passed our years to stay in a "college apartment".
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Old 07-24-2007, 03:34 PM
 
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groceries and food are no problem at all in any of these towns (let me emphasize - these are small towns, not cities - only White Plains could really be considered a city).

you should be able to find a 2 bedroom apartment to rent that aren't "college apartments". a 3 bedroom apartment might be a bit more difficult to find and certainly a lot more expensive. many towns in Westchester have a buidling or two that are "luxury rentals" - but those are more in Southern Westchester (closer to the city). Somers is in Northern Westchester. It sounds to me like you might want to focus on the White Plains (central) area so you are not in a small town and are still close to NYC as well as not far from work.

good luck (and you will probably be both thrilled and appaled by "real American malls").
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Old 07-25-2007, 06:03 PM
 
Location: westchester, ny
86 posts, read 357,536 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoontoNY View Post
Hi Cjim,

Thanks a lot for your answer. I will have a look at those cities you have mentioned. When I said nice shopping facilities I was not talking about high scale shopping, but more about buying groceries and food...It will be my first time in the USA so for the moment, I would not know what a real american mall is though I am eager to visit one!!!

I think it is really not worth buying a house for a max 2 year stay. If we rent, we are free to go more easily once the work is completed and we might avoid paying some taxes. We also heard some rumours about prices going down in USA, though it is the same in Europe and I still have not seen any real price decrease. But of course, it depends on what we can find. We have children and we have definitely passed our years to stay in a "college apartment".
SoontoNY,

Do you have a price range? We are looking to rent our 3/4 BR house on an acre In Goldens Bridge within the next 6 months. It's 5 minutes from Somers, and 2 minutes from the NYC train station. Great School district also - Katonah Lewisboro.

I can e-mail you some pics if you think you might be interested.

thanks,
rscap
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Old 07-26-2007, 02:58 AM
 
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Hi Rscap

and thanks a lot, but we will not be moving within the next 6 months. We will probably move summer 2008....else, it sounded as a nice place for us..
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Old 07-26-2007, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Rockland County, NY
110 posts, read 467,075 times
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Hi
I think you might want to consider Rockland county, right over the bridge from Westchester and def more affordable places to rent Great shopping, schools etc I have a client who is moving here from Italy and I have been sending him searches I be more than happy to do the same for you
Good luck
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Old 07-26-2007, 08:32 AM
 
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Hi Acip, thanks a lot. I will have a look at that county. What cities would you suggest in Rockland county?.

As I said in another post, we still plenty of time before the move, but I will for sure contact you some months before that happens, if that is ok with you.
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Old 07-26-2007, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Northern Westchester/Putnam
103 posts, read 414,723 times
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Hello - if your work will be in Somers, you might want to consider Somers itself! It is quite a nice town, right on the train line and easy to get to the city. Outside of Somers I would suggest surrounding towns - Yorktown (bigger town center and more shopping), North Salem (more rural, lots of horse farms), Katonah (very nice village center, antique-type, home to a wonderful Art Museum). These will be the closest to your place of work, and they are all located right on the train line and highway to take you into the city. Of course, you can also expand the search into other areas, but the drive will be longer.
Stay away from Rockland county as that will mean crossing the bridge twice a day, and you never know what the traffic is going to be like. That will also add significantly to your commute.
By the way, you CAN rent a house. A lot of people who are relocating into the area temporarily for work (IBM and PepsiCo) do that. Those rental listings typically move quickly, that's why you don't see a lot of them on Realtor.com and other real estate sites.
I have a lot of information in print format about Somers and surrounding towns (I am located right in Somers!), if you would like I can mail you something so you could start reading to familiarize yourself with the areas. PM me if you'd like that.
Natasha
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Old 07-26-2007, 09:03 AM
 
4 posts, read 9,782 times
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Smile Rockland County?

Having lived in Westchester County for 32 years, I'd recommend staying in Westchester County in your situation. Rockland County is across the Hudson River and the traffic on the Tappan Zee Bridge each day is a nightmare. Many of my friends moved there for cheaper housing costs and work in Westchester and all have regretted the move. They all arrive at work over an hour ahead of schedule because they are trying to miss the bridge traffic, and sometimes they are late anyway. Then returning home in the evening is another challenge. Somers area is lovely and all the towns nearby that were mentioned so far are very nice places to live. White Plains is a great shopping area with a Whole Foods (organic foods) and Trader Joes (specialty and lots of organic foods) in addition to several major grocery chains. They also have many ethnic shopping opportunities (Asian, Middle Eastern, Italian). Mt. Kisco, Chappaqua, Yorktown Heights, Pound Ridge, Bedford Hills are all an easy drive down to White Plains. If you choose to live in a city (White Plains), your commute will be about 30 minutes each way but it is against the traffic as everyone else is commuting toward WP in the morning. Good luck.
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