U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Westchester County
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 12-01-2017, 09:37 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,570 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

I've only been to White Plains a handful of times now, and it looks beautiful! There is the strong inevitability that I'll be moving the family to that area within the next year, and to be honest I'm not sure where to start. I'm already expecting it to be substantially different than Texas, but we also have traveled and lived abroad quite a bit so my husband and I are fairly adaptable. From what I've heard from some co-workers, no one that works there really lives in White Plains, which I thought was weird.

So that brings me to the big question.. where could we live that's within 30-45 minutes driving or train from White Plains? We'll need decent schools for the kiddos, and populated enough where roads are plowed regularly in the winter. Realizing that real estate is going to be astronomical and that we will be renting for the first year or so while we get acclimated, we're looking for a typical middle-class neighborhood, whatever that means for this region of the country.

Any ideas? Also open to NJ and CT for the right city and fit for the family. As a point of reference, we lived in Toronto for a few years and absolutely loved it (though the new city doesn't have to be quite as urban, if it's not doable). Does such a magical place exist???

Thanks in advance!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-02-2017, 05:42 AM
 
21 posts, read 25,250 times
Reputation: 40
I have lived in White Plains for over 30 years. Biggest advantages are access to any kind of shopping or entertainment you might want, and excellent city services. Not much outdoor activity other than small parks due to the lack of open space. Its the commercial center of Westchester County. Housing costs typically range from $500 K to $800 K, and most houses were built pre-1980. Property taxes are low compared to the rest of Westchester County, but much much higher than most of the nation. A 1500 sf house built in the 1960's on a 50 x 100 ft lot will have an annual tax bill of 10 K to 12K in White Plains. You do not get much property for your money. Lot sizes are typically 50 x 100 or maybe 75 x 150 ft. Anything larger will only be found in the few very new, very expensive developments. School quality considered about average for Westchester County.

Commuting from anywhere west of the Hudson River (NJ, Rockland County) along I-287 and across the Tappan Zee Bridge could be a bad move. Very heavy traffic from west to east in mornings and reverse in afternoon. Commuting from the east (CT) along I-287, not so bad. Commuting from northern Westchester County mainly occurs along I-684 or the Taconic Parkway. From what I hear, rush hour traffic along both those roads is heavy, but moves along. I imagine most of the people you will be working with are commuting down to White Plains from the north. From what I hear, many White Plains school teachers live in Putnam County and even Dutchess County to the north, as you get much more house and land for your money with much lower property taxes.

Westchester County south of White Plains is continuous suburban and commercial sprawl, with no actual delineation between towns. Some nice expensive areas with reportedly excellent schools, like Eastchester, Larchmont, Scarsdale, etc. Not so nice areas in Mt. Vernon and most of Yonkers. North of White Plains, the towns are more spread apart and separated by woods, with the distance of separation increasing as you go north. North of White Plains, larger lot sizes up to 2 acres are readily available, but property taxes increase due to lower commercial contributions. Towns along the Hudson River like Tarrytown tend to be nice, but they are older, hilly and very congested. Eastern Westchester towns, like Rye and Rye Brook, are very nice, but expensive. Port Chester and areas of New Rochelle have their problems.

With the exception of Mt. Vernon and large parts of Yonkers, housing costs tend to increase as you get closer to NYC and decrease as you move north, as people are paying for the shorter train commute to NYC. Three Metro North train lines run through Westchester County, but only the Harlem Line goes through White Plains. There is no east-west train service, only north-south to NYC. That means if you wanted to commute to White Plains by train, you would have to live close to the Harlem line which runs from Mt. Vernon in the south, through Mt. Kisco in northern Westchester, Brewster in Putnam County, and then on up to Dutchess County. However, the WP train station is not located in the city downtown or near most corporate locations. It's about a quarter mile walk to downtown. Unless you are working close to the WP train station, you would have to take a taxi if you commuted by train.

I know two people who recently bought homes in Yorktown in northern Westchester County. Prices for 1980 - 1990 era 3 to 4 bedroom houses on 2/3 to 2 acres were about 550 K. Their annual property taxes range from 16 K to 20 K, and will probably increase every year. The rush hour driving commute from Yorktown to White Plains is probably 30 to 40 minutes. Schools in northern Westchester, with a few exceptions, are reportedly very good, but you will pay for them with very high property taxes.

Where to live to work in White Plains will really come down to your housing budget and personal desire for space/land. Southern Westchester is congested and expensive; northern Westchester - much less so. Personally, I would start my home search in White Plains. If that's too expensive or crowded for you, then look north in Westchester County. If you don't mind a longer driving commute and want woods and space, much lower housing costs can be found around Brewster and other areas of Putnam County. About 10 years ago, I believe typical house rentals in nice neighborhoods of 1950 / 1960 era homes on 50 x 100 ft lots in White Plains were going for about $2300 per month. I don't know the current rate.

By the way, two of my children graduated from college in TX (UT and TT) and one has worked there for the past few years, currently living in the suburbs north of Dallas. I believe you will find the White Plains area similar to the north Dallas suburbs, just much more expensive and crowded.

This may not apply to you, but just in case, be forewarned that the laws regarding firearms are very restrictive in NY state compared to TX, particularly in Westchester County. You cannot legally bring a pistol into Westchester County without first getting a county permit for it, which would take months. You would have to start the process from TX and leave it behind until you received the permit.

If you have any other specific questions about White Plains, don't hesitate to ask.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-03-2017, 07:41 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,570 times
Reputation: 10
Wow, that was really informative, thank you!! Yeah the gun thing definitely doesn't apply to me Might be one of the few left in Texas that can say that haha

Anyway this was super helpful and much appreciated!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-04-2017, 07:31 AM
 
307 posts, read 613,098 times
Reputation: 211
I grew up in White Plains, moved out and lived in NYC for 10 years after college, and now live in White Plains again. We have two kids in the public school system and we love it. It's a different vibe than other towns in Westchester, you just need to determine if it's for you. If you are already working in WP, I wouldn't rule out living there. You can ask me any questions if you want, or if you search some of my old posts, I've written a bunch about the schools, different neighborhoods, etc.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-04-2017, 11:21 AM
 
666 posts, read 655,568 times
Reputation: 905
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachel6992 View Post
I've only been to White Plains a handful of times now, and it looks beautiful! There is the strong inevitability that I'll be moving the family to that area within the next year, and to be honest I'm not sure where to start. I'm already expecting it to be substantially different than Texas, but we also have traveled and lived abroad quite a bit so my husband and I are fairly adaptable. From what I've heard from some co-workers, no one that works there really lives in White Plains, which I thought was weird.

So that brings me to the big question.. where could we live that's within 30-45 minutes driving or train from White Plains? We'll need decent schools for the kiddos, and populated enough where roads are plowed regularly in the winter. Realizing that real estate is going to be astronomical and that we will be renting for the first year or so while we get acclimated, we're looking for a typical middle-class neighborhood, whatever that means for this region of the country.

Any ideas? Also open to NJ and CT for the right city and fit for the family. As a point of reference, we lived in Toronto for a few years and absolutely loved it (though the new city doesn't have to be quite as urban, if it's not doable). Does such a magical place exist???

Thanks in advance!
White Plains itself is more urban, in part, than what many people like, so that explains why people who work in White Plains would not necessarily want to live there. It's school district has some of the "issues" found with large urban schools - a very big HS, lots of economic, social, ethnical diversity. But this is an attraction for some as well.

For me, the biggest question you should answer is this - How permanent will the White Plains job be/what is the likelihood that employment will shift to Manhattan. If the answer is yes/no, than I would look at points north and northeast (basically northern Westchester, Putnam and maybe Dutchess, as well as Fairfield in CT (all counties, not towns/cities). In suburban NYC, you pay a huge premium for proximity to Manhattan, so why pay it if you don't need it. The only exception would be if your family is very wealthy (I know wealth is relative) and can afford a million dollar house without much sweat - than you can look at the really nice towns below White Plains in Westchester like Rye, Bronxville, Mamaroneck, Scarsdale, etc. But unless you are coming from a blue blood area in Dallas, you will find more of a culture shock in a top town in lower Westchester than in the more spread out, "ordinary" suburbs found elsewhere.

Also, keep in mind that in suburban NY you shop for houses based on school district. More than 2/3 of your very high property tax bill goes to the schools, and school district is the single most defining aspect of where you live, especially if you have school age kids. This is especially important once you learn that mailing address means nothing. If you like a house located at 123 Main Street, Greattown, NY, don't assume its in the Greattown School District. It may instead be in the Crappyschools School District.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-05-2017, 02:42 AM
 
21 posts, read 25,250 times
Reputation: 40
Just recalled a friend of my son recently bought a nice 4 bedroom house on about 3 acres near Brewster in Putnam County. He paid about $340 K. I believe that would be about a 45 minute commute to White Plains.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-05-2017, 08:11 AM
 
788 posts, read 702,427 times
Reputation: 505
What is your budget? On the higher end ($1M+) check out Armonk, Chappaqua and Greenwich (CT). Slightly lower end ($650k-$1M) check out Pleasantville, Katonah, Ridgefield CT and Somers. Pleasantville, Chappaqua, and Katonah are on the same train line as White Plains. If budget is lower than this there are plenty of towns that are cheaper but are a heftier commute in more Northern Westchester and southern Putnam counties. Agree you probably don't need to pay the Manhattan premium for points south of White Plains (ie Scarsdale, Bronxville, Rye; although all of the above mentioned towns are still NYC commuter suburbs). I would avoid White Plains itself but it's personal preference if you prefer more of an urban environment.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:




Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Westchester County
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top