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Western North Carolina The Mountain Region including Asheville
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:48 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,116 times
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my husband and i have a grown children, we live in ct and would like to relocate at some point to an area with mtns. hopefully without harsh winters, been researching ashville and it seems like the perfect place-looks like it's a really diverse and interesting area, having lived in a very conservative area most of our lives we'd like a change-any suggestions of scenic areas to live close to ashville in the 350 range? and what is the climate like in the winter? help!
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:29 PM
 
Location: Weaverville
765 posts, read 2,453,135 times
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The winters are relatively mild compared to CT. They are essentially the same as the Wash DC area where I come from (we just bought in Asheville and will move Dec 1). This link will give you some good info on Asheville including climate. //www.city-data.com/city/Ashevi...-Carolina.html

You can also do a climate comparison here Vacation Planner - Climate Comparison

We chose to stay near Asheville because of the conservative issue too. The city and immediate area is pretty liberal and the further out you go the more conservative it gets. When we were there before the election last year all you saw around town were Obama signs but as we drove down to Hendersonville we saw more and more McCain signs. You can also do searches online to see how each community voted in recent elections by zipcode.

The town is diverse culturally but not racially. It's about 78% white and 17.6% black with minor numbers of others. There are lots of activities--many tourist oriented but locals can enjoy them too. There are lots of outdoor activities. Lots of festivals, etc. In spite of what you may read we have found the locals to be very welcoming. You will see posts on here from a few curmudgeons who want all non-natives to just leave but they are best ignored. This stems from the fact that the area is attracting a lot of "outsiders" who are diluting the local "culture" and competing with them for resources. Of course that happens everywhere that you have a lot of new folks moving to an area.

There also is a perceived economic inequity since local salaries are low and there is a perception that may or may not be true that newcomers have a lot more income. For example few locals can afford a $350K home like you are looking for. Because we come in with money from the sale of more expensive homes outside the area it drives up local prices. Also the tourism industry everywhere is not known for high wages and that drives the Asheville economy.

We looked at Asheville for about 5 years before buying. We made annual trips to get a feel for the various communities and the area. We also did a lot of online searches of real estate sites to get a feel for the market and had it narrowed down by the time we came down for the final buying trip. I'll be happy to PM you with our agents name and also links to sites I found especially useful for searches.

If you scan the posts for the last year you'll see many discussions like this one. Good luck with your search.

Last edited by Cofga; 11-14-2009 at 04:56 PM..
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Old 11-14-2009, 09:09 PM
 
108 posts, read 367,514 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by margaret Rose View Post
my husband and i have a grown children, we live in ct and would like to relocate at some point to an area with mtns. hopefully without harsh winters, been researching ashville and it seems like the perfect place-looks like it's a really diverse and interesting area, having lived in a very conservative area most of our lives we'd like a change-any suggestions of scenic areas to live close to ashville in the 350 range? and what is the climate like in the winter? help!
We are from CT too... and just bought a little house here a year ago! Love it!!! Still have the CT house, so have a looong commute! Whereabouts are you in CT? We are SE, shoreline near RI. I have to say, I don't miss CT at all (I'm here in NC whenever possible)!!! Rather a surprise, as I lived there @ 30 years.

Why did we buy here? Better climate. Less winter. Mountains. Wonderful arts/crafts climate! North Carolina Center for Creative Retirement (UNCA). Good "green" vibe.

The climate... well, it is variable! That's what the mountains will do for you... elevations are hugely important! I happen to live up in Burnsville (north of Asheville), and the conditions are way different than Asheville!

Where I wouldn't think twice about venturing out in 4 inches of snow in CT... because the roads are plowed and sanded/salted there... I wouldn't dream of trying to get down my road here under similar conditions! They don't bother with extensive road maintenance because snow is hardly ever a problem here (except in the higher elevations where they WANT snow, for skiing). In most areas there is certainly not snow on the ground for weeks (or months) on end like in CT! It tends to be a brief event, appreciated for it's beauty and then gone. The way it should be.

I think you will need to do what we did... get yourselves down here! Rent a place and explore! There are lots of great communities... Black Mountain, Waynesville, Burnsville, Marshall... and areas within Asheville itself as well... you just need to check out which one feels right. And the winter is a good time to do that! See the area at it's "worst". Because the spring and summer and fall will wow you and cloud your objectivity :-)
Good luck!
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Old 11-15-2009, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
670 posts, read 1,372,257 times
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Greetings Margaret,

I'd echo what the others said. Come down for an extended visit during the time you think is the worst, the potential deal breaker. Sounds like that is winter for you (which conveniently gets you away from the northeast winter for a while). If you have the time and means and do not want to temporarily relocate for an extended period, spend a week or two here in the various seasons. Each have their good and bad. As Glen said, if there is any noticeable amount of snow on the roads, think carefully before venturing out. Between the mountain roads and people who are not experienced in driving in snow, it can be a mess. The good news is the roads usually clear themselves by the afternoon.

Spring brings warmer weather, the usual spring attractions (foliage in bloom) and the start of tourism, which means more crowds. Cool nights and comfortable days.

Summer is relatively mild. A handful of days will break 90, most of the highs are in the 80s. Humidity can be high at times, but not what people envision in the South (or in Washington DC, as Cofga can attest). The altitude takes the sting out of southern summers.

Fall brings great temperatures (cool to cold nights, comfortable days), color changes, as a spike in tourists. There is a late-summer to early-fall season between Labor Day and the start of leaf season where tourism and thus traffic is down. Things are more accessible.

Winters here are quite bearable, and in fact, I like them. No, I am not a winter person, but tourism is down, so traffic is down, downtown is easier to access, getting into certain restaurants requires nothing more than walking in, etc. Temperatures are quite mild compared to what you are used to.

If you still need to earn a living, you will find things tight even in the best of times. Tourism and health care are the two largest segments of the economy. However, if you have made your money or you have jobs that will allow you to telecommute, things gets much easier.

The major disconnect between the locals (and some of us transplants) and "outsiders" can be inferred from the term "outsider." If you become part of the area versus remaining someone from Ct. who know spends their time in Asheville, enjoy things for what they are and understand that you share many of the positives of the area with others you will have very few problems. Unfortunately, we also have people who have landed here expecting the area to provide a happiness they will never find, rather than a offering a positive life style change they can use to make themselves happy.

What sort of activities do you like and what do you hope to find for your money in a house and neighborhood?
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Old 11-15-2009, 09:47 AM
 
Location: New England
132 posts, read 457,684 times
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I'd love people's input on this:


My wife and I live in New England as well and have been thinking about moving to the Asheville area for a few years.

We are outdoor type people - we enjoy hiking, camping, running, tennis, kayaking, etc. - but we also enjoy a good coffee house and cafe.

Were not into pricey, fancy restaurants or huge houses. We just want a cool little bungalow or arts and crafts style home. The homes around us are expensive (for what you get) and lack character and charm.

My biggest concern about moving is missing the variety that New England offers. From where we live we can get to Burlington VT, Portland ME, the White mountains of NH, the beaches of RI, the Berkshires and Boston - all in 3-4 hrs. We love to take weekend and 3 day trips when we can.

Is there much to see and do in terms of day trips around Asheville?
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Old 11-15-2009, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
90 posts, read 333,235 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michael49 View Post
I'd love people's input on this:


My wife and I live in New England as well and have been thinking about moving to the Asheville area for a few years.

We are outdoor type people - we enjoy hiking, camping, running, tennis, kayaking, etc. - but we also enjoy a good coffee house and cafe.

Were not into pricey, fancy restaurants or huge houses. We just want a cool little bungalow or arts and crafts style home. The homes around us are expensive (for what you get) and lack character and charm.

My biggest concern about moving is missing the variety that New England offers. From where we live we can get to Burlington VT, Portland ME, the White mountains of NH, the beaches of RI, the Berkshires and Boston - all in 3-4 hrs. We love to take weekend and 3 day trips when we can.

Is there much to see and do in terms of day trips around Asheville?
IMO you can have all of the things you mentioned here as well. The only thing missing might be Boston. We have Atlanta and Charlotte but I doubt either will replace Boston. Atlanta is closer perhaps. Beach is within 4 hours and pretty much any mountain activity is right out your back door.
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Old 11-15-2009, 04:20 PM
 
Location: New England
132 posts, read 457,684 times
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Originally Posted by pslamp32 View Post
IMO you can have all of the things you mentioned here as well. The only thing missing might be Boston. We have Atlanta and Charlotte but I doubt either will replace Boston. Atlanta is closer perhaps. Beach is within 4 hours and pretty much any mountain activity is right out your back door.
Thanks for the input.

Any other former New Englanders here?
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Old 11-16-2009, 08:00 AM
 
2,087 posts, read 1,635,742 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michael49 View Post
Thanks for the input.

Any other former New Englanders here?

That won't be hard to find. The majority of people here are former something. Mostly Northerners or Floridians with a recent blast of californians.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Weaverville
765 posts, read 2,453,135 times
Reputation: 403
Alan--come on, you know its against the rules to post links to your real estate web site on here. If you're that unethical then how many folks are going to want to trust you to handle their real estate transactions?
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Old 11-20-2009, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
670 posts, read 1,372,257 times
Reputation: 1068
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cofga View Post
Alan--come on, you know its against the rules to post links to your real estate web site on here. If you're that unethical then how many folks are going to want to trust you to handle their real estate transactions?
Looks like the Mod got out the giant electronic eraser, Larry.

After I read one or two of his other "Billy Mays" posts, I felt like I needed to take a shower.
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