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Old 09-13-2016, 02:02 PM
 
39 posts, read 65,781 times
Reputation: 15

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Hi,

I may be moving to Fort Mills for job relocation. I am hoping that you nice people can assist me in pointing me in the right direction in where I should be looking to purchase a house.

Here are a few things that I would need:

* Great Schools - I have a 4 kids, ages 1, 5, 11 and 14 so elementary, middle school and high school are important. As every parents wants their kids to attend great schools that is very important to us.

* Housing range $500,000 - $600,000 - looking for a top notch subdivision. I wish there was a website that lists all subdivisions and the amenities they have to offer and yearly cost.

* Location - I am not familiar with the area at all so any information you can provide regarding: how far to Charlotte, Stores, Lakes, Activities any information to make the decision easier would be helpful.

* Financial (Banking) employment opportunities - I know Charlotte is building out its financial district. Any info would be helpful.

* People - I am born and raised in Queens, NY and would be looking forward to moving where people are just nicer. I am am true New Yorker but we are looking for a change. New Yorkers are very stressed due to high cost of living, terrible commutes, threat of terror attacks. Everything is fast paced.

Can you tell me about the people, I know with out asking they are nicer than people here but are they welcoming to outsiders. Will my kids feel comfortable in the schools, will they be accepted? They are outgoing kids who play sports, they are truly good kids.

What about the adults are they welcoming to making new friends? Do they stick to groups and clicks?

* Entertainment - What do you do for fun? Weeknights? Weekends? I know the Panthers and Hornets are close.

* Weather - I know what I read on the internet but would like to get a true feel from you what the weather is truly like in the area.

* Commuting to work - The job is in Fort Mills but if I decided to leave and work in Charlotte, what would be the avg commute time?

* Colleges - Here is the an important question - would it be better to live in NC than SC, the reason I ask is due to instate tuition? Both states have great schools but for example NC Chapel Hill is roughly 8K if you instate vs 35K out of state. Any information regarding this topic would be REALLY helpful.

Thanks in advance for answering my questions.

Kind regards,
Jay
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Old 09-14-2016, 06:41 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,124 posts, read 5,650,317 times
Reputation: 6673
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightning22 View Post

* Great Schools - I have a 4 kids, ages 1, 5, 11 and 14 so elementary, middle school and high school are important. As every parents wants their kids to attend great schools that is very important to us.

* Housing range $500,000 - $600,000 - looking for a top notch subdivision. I wish there was a website that lists all subdivisions and the amenities they have to offer and yearly cost.

* Location - I am not familiar with the area at all so any information you can provide regarding: how far to Charlotte, Stores, Lakes, Activities any information to make the decision easier would be helpful.

* Financial (Banking) employment opportunities - I know Charlotte is building out its financial district. Any info would be helpful.

* People - I am born and raised in Queens, NY and would be looking forward to moving where people are just nicer. I am am true New Yorker but we are looking for a change. New Yorkers are very stressed due to high cost of living, terrible commutes, threat of terror attacks. Everything is fast paced.

Can you tell me about the people, I know with out asking they are nicer than people here but are they welcoming to outsiders. Will my kids feel comfortable in the schools, will they be accepted? They are outgoing kids who play sports, they are truly good kids.

What about the adults are they welcoming to making new friends? Do they stick to groups and clicks?

* Entertainment - What do you do for fun? Weeknights? Weekends? I know the Panthers and Hornets are close.

* Weather - I know what I read on the internet but would like to get a true feel from you what the weather is truly like in the area.

* Commuting to work - The job is in Fort Mills but if I decided to leave and work in Charlotte, what would be the avg commute time?

* Colleges - Here is the an important question - would it be better to live in NC than SC, the reason I ask is due to instate tuition? Both states have great schools but for example NC Chapel Hill is roughly 8K if you instate vs 35K out of state. Any information regarding this topic would be REALLY helpful.

Thanks in advance for answering my questions.

Kind regards,
Jay
We moved here from NJ/NYC (lived in Kew Gardens for a while in the mid 1990s) in 2006 and love Fort Mill.

Schools: All schools in Fort Mill are good. Not a bad one in the bunch.

Housing: Look at The Reserve at Gold Hill, Baxter Village, Eppington South, Springfield - those are all in that price range (or slightly below). There's also this list:
http://www.highgarden-charlotte.com/...-neighborhoods

Location: you are asking for too much info in one question, but depending on where you work in Charlotte, and what your work hours are, your commute will be anywhere from 30-45 minutes heading into work. Fort Mill is smallish, but there are plenty of shopping opportunities in nearby Pineville, Rock Hill, and Charlotte (all within 15 minutes drive). Nearby lakes are Lake Wylie (15 minutes away) and Lake Norman (an hour away) just to name to two major players that people visit. Just remember that Charlotte Metro is NOT NYC so you WILL experience culture shock coming down here. But it's a good place.

Employment: Charlotte is not "building out" its financial district. It's second only to NYC (or last I checked it was). You should have no problems if you are well qualified and interview well.

People: Most everyone down here is a transplant, so if they were nice before they got here, they'll be nice now. I've been here 10+ years and it is RARE to meet someone who says, "I'm from right here in NC/SC," when I ask where they are from. Most I meet are people are from Ohio, Pennsylvania, Jersey and NY.

Entertainment: That's another hard one to answer because I don't know what interests you. I could mention plays, concerts, libraries, movie theaters, bars, mall shopping, hiking, and brewery tours, but if you are only interested in reading 18th Century literature, then nothing I mentioned will interest you. Suffice to say that as long as you remember that Charlotte is NOT New York City and don't come expecting 24 hour a day entertainment options, you'll be fine. One other benefit of Charlotte is that it is centrally located between the beach in summer and the mountains in winter.

Weather: Four seasons, with summer being extremely hot and humid and winter mostly being cold and icy (not snowy). Spring and Fall are dreadfully SHORT in length.

Commute: As I said, it depends on where in Charlotte you work, and what your work hours are, but average is 30-45 minutes from Fort Mill to uptown Charlotte.

Colleges: Fort Mill is cheaper than Charlotte. Less taxes, better schools. If your children are all dead-set on attending NC schools, then consider calculating how much more you'd pay in taxes and for a lesser education versus the tuition savings you'd get by applying as an in-state resident for all four kids. But just know there's no guarantee all four kids will even WANT to go to NC schools - what if three of the four want to go to Univ. of SC in Columbia, SC? For us, we picked SC and are urging our kids that (if they decide to go to college) they should consider only SC schools to keep their costs down since they'll be paying most of their way should they decide to go.
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Old 09-14-2016, 08:12 AM
 
39 posts, read 65,781 times
Reputation: 15
Girl - You are fantastic! Thank you for all the information. I was born and raised in Queens (Glendale), used to go to Forest Hills a lot (Austin Street). Not sure if you remember a bar on Yellowstone Blvd "Backdrafts" or some places on Austin Street "Burrito Bar" or Pizzeria Uno. I moved to Staten Island about 12 years ago and coming from row attached housing in Glendale to a detached house in Staten Island, that was like country to me. SO yes, I am sure to be in culture shock if we decide to move there. But I think it was be very positive for the family. Just to reply on a few comments you made:

Schools: I read numerous times they are all good. But its true reading the "great schools" parent reviews a lot of them talk about only teaching to tests. What are your thoughts on that. There has to be some schools that are better than others. I know it will be opinioned based but I would like your opinion. I have 4 kids, 3 girls (14,11,5) and a 1 year old boy. Both my older daughters play basketball, if the schools are all even academically are some schools better than other in sports than others? Meaning are there some schools really known for their sports?

Housing: Thanks for the info. Would you know of any site or chart that lists all the subdivision amenities? I would love to do a side by side comparison of what each has to offer. Pools, Pond, Playground, Tennis, Basketball courts, Fees, etc...
I would also assume that they are wealthy subdivisions and cheaper housing subdivisions. I'm not rich or poor but I don't want to be the poorest person in a wealthy subdivision and I don't want to be the richest person in a cheaper housing subdivision. I will check the ones you suggested. Thanks!

Employment/People - Glad to read your response to both topics.

Entertainment: As you know nothing is like NY but in all honesty living here and having 4 kids and working all the time its hard to take advantage of all NY has to offer. What do the kids my ages (14,11,5) do for fun? I would like to keep them busy and out of trouble (lol). They do like lakes/beaches/pools, haven't really been exposed to mountains.

Weather: I cant be worse than NY in the winter so that's got to be a plus. I am believe its not as hot and humid as Florida so that's a plus as well.

Commute: the office is located at 605 Munn Rd E Fort Mill SC 29715, currently my commute is over an hour long on a city express bus so anything less than 1 hour I am good! I guess I was asking how long to Charlotte in case I decide to leave and look for other employment. So it seems very reasonable to drive to Charlotte from Fort Mill.

Colleges: I agree with everything you said. Who knows what they'll want to do in a 3-8 years. I was just trying to plan the best I could now but you truly never know.

If you don't mind, I have a few other questions:

Is Indian Land in Fort Mill? Are there areas right next to Fort Mill I should consider or only look in Fort Mill?

Are the Subdivisions big? If you live the furthest from say the subdivision pool would it be walkable? (I know they are all different sizes but just trying to get an idea). Is it better to find a home near the subdivision activities or further away from them?

I see most houses don't have a basement? Would you know why?

I also see most houses don't have there own pools, is that because they all use the subdivision pools?

Last thing, being the you lived near Forest Hills gardens, there village had rules, meaning if you wanted to change something to your property it had to be in compliance with the village rules. Is it like that when living in a subdivision.
Hypothetically (not that I want to..lol) If I wanted to paint my house pink with purple stripes would I need subdivision approval?

Girl - Thanks for all your help. Especially you living in NY/NJ you have a great idea where I am coming from so I value your opinion.

Thanks again!
J
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Old 09-14-2016, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,124 posts, read 5,650,317 times
Reputation: 6673
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightning22 View Post
Girl - You are fantastic! Thank you for all the information. I was born and raised in Queens (Glendale), used to go to Forest Hills a lot (Austin Street). Not sure if you remember a bar on Yellowstone Blvd "Backdrafts" or some places on Austin Street "Burrito Bar" or Pizzeria Uno. I moved to Staten Island about 12 years ago and coming from row attached housing in Glendale to a detached house in Staten Island, that was like country to me. SO yes, I am sure to be in culture shock if we decide to move there. But I think it was be very positive for the family. Just to reply on a few comments you made:

Schools: I read numerous times they are all good. But its true reading the "great schools" parent reviews a lot of them talk about only teaching to tests. What are your thoughts on that. There has to be some schools that are better than others. I know it will be opinioned based but I would like your opinion. I have 4 kids, 3 girls (14,11,5) and a 1 year old boy. Both my older daughters play basketball, if the schools are all even academically are some schools better than other in sports than others? Meaning are there some schools really known for their sports?

If you look at any thread in this York/Lancaster forum you will see 99.9% are positive about the schools. The schools are GREAT here. No matter which ones you end up attending. Sports is popular here - our free weekly paper has a sports section dedicated to local school sports. Marching band is HUGE in Fort Mill. We have swimming, baseball, volleyball, basketball, football, soccer - just to name a few. Plenty of options to choose from.

Housing: Thanks for the info. Would you know of any site or chart that lists all the subdivision amenities? I would love to do a side by side comparison of what each has to offer. Pools, Pond, Playground, Tennis, Basketball courts, Fees, etc...
I would also assume that they are wealthy subdivisions and cheaper housing subdivisions. I'm not rich or poor but I don't want to be the poorest person in a wealthy subdivision and I don't want to be the richest person in a cheaper housing subdivision. I will check the ones you suggested. Thanks!

I don't know of any website that lists subdivision amenities, but most at that price range will have at least a community pool and playground. Most subdivisions have HOAs, which mean HOA dues - but it varies by neighborhood. Probably ranges between $400-1000 per year, depending on what subdivision you end up in. If you are selling a house in NYC, you'll have plenty of money to buy down here. A standard 4 bedroom 2 1/2 bath on .25 acre can be had in a nice neighborhood with a community pool for $275K and have good schools - and you keep your extra $$ in the bank. Or you can pay $500+ for a bigger home, slightly bigger lot in a nicer neighborhood and the exact same good schools.

Employment/People - Glad to read your response to both topics.

Entertainment: As you know nothing is like NY but in all honesty living here and having 4 kids and working all the time its hard to take advantage of all NY has to offer. What do the kids my ages (14,11,5) do for fun? I would like to keep them busy and out of trouble (lol). They do like lakes/beaches/pools, haven't really been exposed to mountains.

Definitely take them to App Ski Mountain in Boone, NC when you get a chance and have them learn how to snow ski. They'll decide then and there if they love it or hate it, and you'll know whether or not you ever need to go again. *lol* Most kids are involved in sports, or band, or scouting or church. They manage to find things to do. Your youngest has a LOT of options - Discovery Place, Lazy 5 Ranch, ImaginOn - that's only three things, but the list is plentiful for very young children.

Weather: I cant be worse than NY in the winter so that's got to be a plus. I am believe its not as hot and humid as Florida so that's a plus as well.

Oh, when it's the middle of summer it can TOTALLY be as bad as Florida, but after 10 years here I can say that I've FINALLY adjusted to the humidity here.

Commute: the office is located at 605 Munn Rd E Fort Mill SC 29715, currently my commute is over an hour long on a city express bus so anything less than 1 hour I am good! I guess I was asking how long to Charlotte in case I decide to leave and look for other employment. So it seems very reasonable to drive to Charlotte from Fort Mill.

Your commute within Fort Mill will be 10-15 minutes. Charlotte would be 30-45 minutes, barring no accidents on 77N.

Colleges: I agree with everything you said. Who knows what they'll want to do in a 3-8 years. I was just trying to plan the best I could now but you truly never know.

If you don't mind, I have a few other questions:

Is Indian Land in Fort Mill? Are there areas right next to Fort Mill I should consider or only look in Fort Mill?

Indian Land is part of Fort Mill, but is in Lancaster County. It's an up and coming area (it was very country until just within the past 8-10 years or so), but schools are not as good (they are not bad at all - just slightly less good than the York County side of Fort Mill). However its proximity to Pineville, Matthews and other areas of NC make it very attractive.

Are the Subdivisions big? If you live the furthest from say the subdivision pool would it be walkable? (I know they are all different sizes but just trying to get an idea). Is it better to find a home near the subdivision activities or further away from them?

There are no mega-subdivisions that I know of (although Baxter is quite large (but most people that live there use golf carts to jet around their subdivision)). In my neighborhood, my kids can walk to the pool - it takes them about 10 minutes to get there. Your ability to handle potential noise from amenities should dictate whether you want a house close to them or not. I personally do not want to be near the pool or tennis courts in my neighborhood, even if their open hours are reasonable.

I see most houses don't have a basement? Would you know why?

Some do, some don't. It's a mixed bag here but doesn't reflect on the quality of the house. We came from a house in NJ with a basement and moved to a house here in FM on a slab. I love not having a basement, but I'll admit there are some days when I wish we did have one.

I also see most houses don't have there own pools, is that because they all use the subdivision pools?

Yes.

Last thing, being the you lived near Forest Hills gardens, there village had rules, meaning if you wanted to change something to your property it had to be in compliance with the village rules. Is it like that when living in a subdivision.
Hypothetically (not that I want to..lol) If I wanted to paint my house pink with purple stripes would I need subdivision approval?

If you move into a subdivision with an HOA, yes there will be covenants and restrictions on what you can do to your house. When we built an addition on our house a few years ago, we had to run all our plans and materials through the HOA committee for approval first. So no pink houses with purple stripes. I suggest once you find a house you like, ask for a copy of the CC&Rs to review BEFORE you close the deal, so you know exactly what you would be getting into (some HOAs dictate the kind of mailbox you should have, or roof color, while others only care about the "big things" like home additions and changes to the actual outside structure of your home).

Girl - Thanks for all your help. Especially you living in NY/NJ you have a great idea where I am coming from so I value your opinion.

Thanks again!
J
Anytime! Good luck!
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Old 09-14-2016, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Tega Cay, SC
546 posts, read 685,763 times
Reputation: 930
Just move to Baxter. It's on the other side of the highway where you'll be working. It has pools, parks, a YMCA, a library and ez access to the highway. You won't be the richest or the poorest there.
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Old 09-14-2016, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,124 posts, read 5,650,317 times
Reputation: 6673
Forgot to add - for entertainment - don't forget that Fort Mill is only 2 minutes away from Carowinds, a large amusement and water park that straddles the NC/SC border. Summer passes are decently priced and include admittance to both the rides and the waterpark, as well as Scarowinds, their big Halloween event. Your kids will love that if they like amusement parks.
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Old 09-14-2016, 09:04 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,124 posts, read 5,650,317 times
Reputation: 6673
Quote:
Originally Posted by Proud Father View Post
Just move to Baxter. It's on the other side of the highway where you'll be working. It has pools, parks, a YMCA, a library and ez access to the highway. You won't be the richest or the poorest there.
Plus plenty of restaurants within walking distance.
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Old 09-14-2016, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Fort Mill, SC
850 posts, read 2,504,695 times
Reputation: 266
As was previously mentioned, the area is full of transplants, so they bring their acceptance and attitudes with them in most cases. I can tell that the overall feel of the area has changed a bit over the last 10 years, but that comes with living in a highly desirable area.
You mention Baxter, we have two pools, many parks, sidewalks, trails for hiking, running, biking, town center with bars and resturants. The current HOA is $850 a year, I think.
Good luck.
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Old 09-14-2016, 10:53 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,124 posts, read 5,650,317 times
Reputation: 6673
The only caveat to Baxter is that coming from Queens and SI, the OP may enjoy the opportunity to "spread his wings" and not be in a neighborhood where your neighbors are a arm's width away. This is one reason we opted not to buy in Baxter when we moved here from NY/NJ. Having a buffer was a luxury we'd never enjoyed before and was worth more than the convenience of living directly in Baxter. Also, with four kids you'd be hard-pressed to find too much inventory in Baxter that will hold a family of that size without feeling tight.

Fortunately, many of the amenities of Baxter are available even for non-residents (the school, the YMCA, the restaurants/shopping, the walking trails, and parks). My family hangs out in Baxter all the time despite the fact we live one exit up the road.
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Old 09-14-2016, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Fort Mill, SC
850 posts, read 2,504,695 times
Reputation: 266
I'm not selling Baxter, it's a great neighborhood, but there are plenty of neighborhoods in FM that offer many different options. With their budget, you could also look at Springfield, or maybe a fixer on the lake with a dock.
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