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Who loves where they live?


Eirene
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I want to know where people love living and why.

This is partly out of curiosity and partly because we often talk about moving but never can figure out where we would go.

Ease of homeschooling and great public and private school options for MS and HS would be very important to us. A manageable cost of living would also be key, and we would love to find a community with like-minded folks, which seems like it should be easier than it is. 

What are the great places out there?

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I lived in Mountain View, CA until I was 15. I loved that there were always things to do, I loved the weather, especially the summer evenings, I loved the diversity. Too expensive for our family.

I lived in SW Portland, OR (Tigard, Beaverton, Aloha) twice. I hated the people. They generally thought I was weird and too conservative. It was the most beautiful place I've ever lived and I was outside all of the time. If you are on FB look up Oregon is Beautiful, but don't move there. I'm serious about looking it up, it's worth your time.

I lived in DC for a year. I loved the people, particularly international tourists. At least once a week I found myself at The International Mall with a group of high school students, usually from Asia, and we'd exchange stories about the places we'd been and people we knew. It was my favorite thing to do. I can't emphasize enough how much there is to do there. I lived in Anacostia and my home smelled like sewage. Don't recommend that, but otherwise it was amazing.

I lived in New Orleans, but it was after Katrina, in a tent, as a volunteer. I can't speak to living there, given my circumstances, but I absolutely loved it. It was my favorite place to live. Mostly the people. Amazing people. So much good food. Hot. 

I lived in Cincinnati, OH and it had the rudest and most racist people I've ever met.

I now live in San Antonio, TX and I love everything about it every day. I am so happy. I love the weather, the people, the food, what there is to do. I am very conservative and have very liberal friends. I am very Christian and welcomed in any circle. I've never had that before. The Riverwalk is my favorite thing.

Top two are New Orleans and San Antonio, only flat out no is Cincinnati. Now go look up Oregon is Beautiful.

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I love where I used to live. Lancaster, PA. Well, we lived in a suburb. Many great public schools. Sunny with gently rolling hills. Manageable cost of living. There were a decent number of homeschoolers when we lived there many years ago. 

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I love my home, Alaska. It is beautiful just gorgeous. The folks are friendly. Homeschooling is easy but that cost of living thing would probably make you scratch it off your list. It is dreadfully expensive.

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25 minutes ago, Frances said:

I can’t access the page because I’m not on Facebook. But if it will discourage people from moving to the state, that is a great thing. Then maybe housing prices will go lower.

Just share some pics of grocery prices. People will cry.

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I live in San Leandro, CA just south of Oakland, CA. Homeschool support and ease for sure mostly because public school is not great (according to my husband an understatement). Lots of great private schools around both expensive and affordable. I would not say it's affordable because I've seen the price of housing in Oklahoma.

I like it because the weather is amazing (not room temperature year-round like Santa Barbara, but you know all you ever need is a regular jacket). I don't have to drive far for all types of good food. I can find any ingredient I've ever want for recipes within 0.5 hour of driving. Super easy to eat locally grown foods (beef is a bit expensive though compared to states like Texas but you can get local beef). Just lots of fruits and veggies to choose from.

Other places I've lived Hong Kong, China (too hot and humid, and you have to love living in a big city), and Santa Barbara (I felt there wasn't much to do unless you were super wealthy - even then it seemed like they went to LA a lot to do stuff).   

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16 minutes ago, frogger said:

that cost of living thing

We are pretty much tied to the eastern part of the country because of extended family obligations, but I'm curious as to why is the cost of living in Alaska so high? 

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2 minutes ago, Eirene said:

We are pretty much tied to the eastern part of the country because of extended family obligations, but I'm curious as to why is the cost of living in Alaska so high? 

So many things have to be imported into the state and/or transported long distances.

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41 minutes ago, Terabith said:

Roanoke, VA is quite nice!

Why do you like Roanoke? I've been passing through that area en route to other places since I was very young. I'd love to know what you like about it. 

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Overall I like West Michigan.  Homeschooling is easy and lots of co-ops and groups if you want them.

Coat of living is reasonable buy housing costs are up now....but might be reasonable compared to other areas.

We have excellent medical care in Grand Rapids and 30-40 minutes west Is Lake Michigan.  Then there are all the inland lakes and rivers and streams.

Some areas are very diverse, others not so much.

The worst thing is the lack of sun in the winter   We have lots of clouds in Jan and Feb.   Yes, it is cold, but if you dress for the weather, there are lots of great things to do in the snow 

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I love where I live. Homeschooling is easy, lots of strong public and private schools, access to tons of museums / theater / music in both the New Haven and NYC directions, lots of outdoors stuff, strong civic traditions.

Cost of living is unconscionable, however.

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Posted (edited)

I am the opposite of Slache. I live in the SA area and can't stand it anymore. I am outside the city by 40-ish miles, though. Maybe I'd have loved being closer to SA, I don't know. I am a left-of-center moderate. Homeschooling is easy here, especially if you are Christian. If you want a secular experience, it is much harder to find, and tends to skew toward "crunchy" moms.  Quality of schools varies greatly by neighborhood. If you like outdoorsy things, this is a good place to live. People around here are really into sports, too.  Cost of living is low, unless you are closer to Austin, and then housing is outrageous. No income tax here. The summers are brutal. 

I liked the suburbs of Chicago when I lived there and would go back in a heartbeat if DH would agree. Taxes are high and the weather is cold in the winter. But there were a lot of cultural options that I don't have here. I am not outdoorsy at all, and prefer creeping around bookshops, museums, and art galleries. Chicago has a lot of that. People are into sports there, too.  Homeschooling is easy there and there are more options for secular if that is what you want. Cost of living is higher and it is harder to get by on a single income.   

ETA: DH and I are considering relocating to PA. I can't do anymore deep red states (Alabama and Texas), and he can't do anymore deep blue states (California and Illinois). So, PA is probably where we will land. 

Edited by MissLemon
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14 minutes ago, MissLemon said:

I am the opposite of Slache. I live in the SA area and can't stand it anymore. I am outside the city by 40-ish miles, though. Maybe I'd have loved being closer to SA, I don't know. I am a left-of-center moderate. Homeschooling is easy here, especially if you are Christian. If you want a secular experience, it is much harder to find, and tends to skew toward "crunchy" moms.  Quality of schools varies greatly by neighborhood. If you like outdoorsy things, this is a good place to live. People around here are really into sports, too.  Cost of living is low, unless you are closer to Austin, and then housing is outrageous. No income tax here. The summers are brutal. 

I liked the suburbs of Chicago when I lived there and would go back in a heartbeat if DH would agree. Taxes are high and the weather is cold in the winter. But there were a lot of cultural options that I don't have here. I am not outdoorsy at all, and prefer creeping around bookshops, museums, and art galleries. Chicago has a lot of that. People are into sports there, too.  Homeschooling is easy there and there are more options for secular if that is what you want. Cost of living is higher and it is harder to get by on a single income.   

ETA: DH and I are considering relocating to PA. I can't do anymore deep red states (Alabama and Texas), and he can't do anymore deep blue states (California and Illinois). So, PA is probably where we will land. 

DH says PA is too blue and to go to OH. Suburb of any major city. I maintain that I hate the west side of Cincinnati.

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I do.  We’re on the outskirts of a city.  We have a bit of land but are still 20 - 30 minutes drive to decent shops and employment opportunities.  Cost of living is not so bad in our smaller city compared to Sydney, Melbourne etc.  the one downside is the ongoing bushfire risk every summer.

I realise none of that is probably helpful to you given I’m on the other side of the world.

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57 minutes ago, Eirene said:

Why do you like Roanoke? I've been passing through that area en route to other places since I was very young. I'd love to know what you like about it. 

Roanoke has a low cost of living, a wide variety of commercial things but also pretty much every kind of nature you could possibly want within 3 hours, four distinct seasons, beautiful scenery, relatively progressive, decent schools, a wide assortment of colleges and universities, friendly people, and even at rush hour, it never takes longer than 15-20 minutes to drive anywhere.  

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I live in the suburbs of the same city Miss Lemon and Slache live in. I don't particularly like it, but it's the first place we've lived for longer than 2 or 3 years, so I feel settled. Dh will be retiring and we're anticipating moving, possibly to FL. Hopefully we'll stay wherever we move for the rest of our lives.

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Great area, temperate climate, ease of access to mts and ocean beaches (though the water's too cold to do much in it.).  Lots of good schools options, (public and private),  good medical,  parks, 

but it is not affordable in the least.  The prices have recently skyrocketed so much, 2ds is stressing out because he wants "real estate*.  So, he also needs a much better paying job.

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32 minutes ago, Slache said:

DH says PA is too blue and to go to OH. Suburb of any major city. I maintain that I hate the west side of Cincinnati.

We are considering Columbus, too. DH was thinking of NJ, but if he doesn't like Illinois politics, he won't like NJ any better! 

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I live in Boston (not a suburb) and we love it here. Well, I don't like the weather - I wore my winter coat out tonight because it is pouring and quite chilly for July and I didn't get sweaty. But I grew up in NC and love heat and humidity. But you do have hot spells and snow and the most beautiful autumns. History everywhere you look, liberal politics, but I know we are in the top 5 of expensive places to live in the US. Our 3br/2.5bath condo (no yard, one parking spot) would easily sell for 750K. There are a good number of homeschoolers of all persuasions and ages and things got them to do .

 

 

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Posted (edited)

I live in San Diego, CA we just moved to the suburbs. We love it here, lots of things to do. We are in driving distance to the beach, mountains, and desert. The weather is great all year. Lots of homeschoolers in the area. Also great private and public schools. We have some of the best public schools in the country in our area. Only downside is the cost of living.

Edited by SDMomof3
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3 hours ago, Slache said:

DH says PA is too blue and to go to OH. Suburb of any major city. I maintain that I hate the west side of Cincinnati.

 

2 hours ago, MissLemon said:

We are considering Columbus, too. DH was thinking of NJ, but if he doesn't like Illinois politics, he won't like NJ any better! 

I grew up in Pennsylvania, and in my opinion Ohio and New Jersey are never the answer. 😉

I haven't lived there as an adult, but most of my family lives there.  It isn't really blue.  There's a lot of blue collar blue, and the cities of course are blue, but the rest seems pretty red to me.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Slache said:

 

I now live in San Antonio, TX and I love everything about it every day. I am so happy. I love the weather, the people, the food, what there is to do. I am very conservative and have very liberal friends. I am very Christian and welcomed in any circle. I've never had that before. The Riverwalk is my favorite thing.

Top two are New Orleans and San Antonio, only flat out no is Cincinnati. Now go look up Oregon is Beautiful.

I (and my fam) lived in SA (Hollywood Park) for a few years, and we loved it, too. We moved back home to B’ham, AL, and I love it here more overall. Not the weather though. We never had a hurricane or a tornado while we lived in SA. 😉

Ease of homeschooling: super easy, almost too easy in TX. I utilize a cover school here in AL, and I much prefer that. Although “technically” cover schools are no longer required in my state—it’s controversial among the homeschool community here.

I love that I can be in the mountains of TN/NC in 4-5 hours or the beautiful gulf beaches in 4-5 hours. 
 

We have many really good public and private schools. There is actually an excellent classical school just a few miles from me. 
 

 

 

Edited by popmom
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4 hours ago, frogger said:

I love my home, Alaska. It is beautiful just gorgeous. The folks are friendly. Homeschooling is easy but that cost of living thing would probably make you scratch it off your list. It is dreadfully expensive.

Another one that LOVES Alaska!  We moved here 4yrs ago and are now making this state our home after my husband's retirement from 26yrs active Army this summer. As frogger stated... it is beyond gorgeous here and people are helpful and mostly friendly. There are few people compared to the size of the state so it is easy to find solitude and a slower pace of life. Homeschooling is super easy with tons of support.

The downsides are it is far from the lower 48 so traveling is expensive, our winters up here in the Interior are harsh ( think dark and below 30s/40s), and it is expensive. 

This state just got into my soul in a way that brings me a sense of peace I have never experienced before. I have no desire to live anywhere else now and growing up in a military family, then marrying a soldier.... I have lived all over. 

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51 minutes ago, Junie said:

 

I grew up in Pennsylvania, and in my opinion Ohio and New Jersey are never the answer. 😉

I haven't lived there as an adult, but most of my family lives there.  It isn't really blue.  There's a lot of blue collar blue, and the cities of course are blue, but the rest seems pretty red to me.

🤣

I grew up in NY, and we'd also agree that NJ is never, ever the answer. 

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5 hours ago, YaelAldrich said:

I live in Boston (not a suburb) and we love it here. Well, I don't like the weather - I wore my winter coat out tonight because it is pouring and quite chilly for July and I didn't get sweaty. But I grew up in NC and love heat and humidity. But you do have hot spells and snow and the most beautiful autumns. History everywhere you look, liberal politics, but I know we are in the top 5 of expensive places to live in the US. Our 3br/2.5bath condo (no yard, one parking spot) would easily sell for 750K. There are a good number of homeschoolers of all persuasions and ages and things got them to do .

 

 

I'm close enough to Boston that all this applies.  Except, whatever weather Boston gets, ours is usually better: cooler in the summer, not as harsh in the winter.  We're surrounded by plenty to do unless you're looking after 9pm, in which case, there's nothing to do.  My town is run by the Hysterical Committee, which oversees exactly what can and can't be done to moldy old buildings, even if the decisions don't make sense (like the time they refused vinyl siding but in true form, couldn't tell which was the vinyl siding and which was the painted board in front of them).  Average age is about 60, and average number of last names is about 10, eight of which also grace the street signs, town charter, and Mayflower passenger list.  There isn't so much a feeling of moving to a new town as it is wiggling into a community - even the home owners never really leave when it's past their time.  We have crazy food prices ($1.50 per avocado) and crazy rules (don't be a nutcase and cross the bridge on a Friday -you'll never get back.), and housing prices are insane at the moment, and not all that great in a good year.  We gave ourselves a full 12 months to find a rental when we moved here, and lucked into buying.

BUT, people are generally good.  My youngest is happy.  My inhaler is used less.  I'm healthier here than I was in our last home. Our street is quiet and tight knit.  If we don't move back to Europe, this is where we'll be for the rest of our lives.

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7 hours ago, Slache said:

DH says PA is too blue and to go to OH. Suburb of any major city. I maintain that I hate the west side of Cincinnati.

I’m in a very purple corner of PA (generally bends blue by a smidge) and find it kind of awkward. People seem to forget about the things they post in public groups and then don’t understand why IRL conversations feel awkward. 🤪

I still love my home state of NJ, but I wouldn’t pay to live there! Well, not unless I could snag a great 20 acres in the northwest.

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Posted (edited)

I love where I live! Nashville suburbs. 

Middle TN is pretty, with 4 distinct seasons, but a mild winter. Lots of music, history, and fun outdoor things to do. Public schools vary with neighborhood, private schools abound, and homeschooling is easy, though more challenging if you want secular. Free community college. Cost of housing has gone up here, but is nothing like major metro areas on the coasts. No state income tax. Loads of small farms and fabulous quality local food. Excellent library system, parks, zoo, small museums, colleges and universities, and excellent medical care. Good local economy (though music/entertainment/tourism still recovering from covid) and job scenario. People here are very friendly, ime.

The city is blue, the state as a whole is red. My life is nicely purple, with friends in a wide array of worldviews.  

The only thing I don’t like about where I live is that the ocean is a 7 hr drive.  
 

 

Eta: I have lived in OH, VA, RI, PA, NYC, and MS. The only place I liked as well as Nashville was Charlottesville, VA.

Edited by ScoutTN
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I am north of Boston, on the MA/NH state line. I've lived here my whole life, ans I can't imagine living anywhere else. I can get to Boston in 30 minutes, the beach in 30 minutes, and a wealth of amazing other places in 2-5 hours (mountains, NYC, Canada!). Homeschooling in my city is easy, but I haven't really found a 'community', per se; I have met some others, but we are all going it alone.

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8 hours ago, MissLemon said:

We are considering Columbus, too. DH was thinking of NJ, but if he doesn't like Illinois politics, he won't like NJ any better! 

We lived in Columbus for years—DH grew up in a suburb. Love, love, love the city. I moved there from SF  in the very early ‘90s and experienced major culture shock, but I found my tribe and the city has really grown up (in a direction we like).

There’s tons to do—all the sports, hip bars and restaurants, shopping, a vibrant LGBTQ scene, the zoo is fantastic with or without little ones, the metro parks are nice, Ohio State is huge and lends an academic influence. The weather does suck year round, though.
 

The biggest downside for us is that while the city is liberal enough for us, it's a bubble surrounded by deep red. Ohio in general isn't even recognizable to DH it’s gone so far to the right. The right suburb might make sense for you and your DH, though, given the clash of demographics outside the city proper. It’s a pretty diverse urban area and the people are wonderful. 

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36 minutes ago, ScoutTN said:

I love where I live! Nashville suburbs. 

Middle TN is pretty, with 4 distinct seasons, but a mild winter. Lots of music, history, and fun outdoor things to do. Public schools vary with neighborhood, private schools abound, and homeschooling is easy, though more challenging if you want secular. Free community college. Cost of housing has gone up here, but is nothing like major metro areas on the coasts. No state income tax. Loads of small farms and fabulous quality local food. Excellent library system, several colleges and universities, and excellent medical care. 

The city is blue, the state as a whole is red. My life is nicely purple, with friends in a wide array of worldviews.  

The only thing I don’t like about where I live is that the ocean is a 7 hr drive.  
 

 

Eta: I have lived in OH, VA, RI, PA, NYC, and MS. The only place I liked as well as Nashville was Charlottesville, VA.

She said it all. I’m bout 30 minutes outside Nashville and she’s right. I love it here.

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Looks like I need to be the one to defend New Jersey.    Or at least Northern NJ, I make no claims about the Southern part of the state which can sometimes seem like an entirely different place.   I've basically lived in the same county my entire life. 

Fairly moderate politically, leans liberal but quite a few conservative areas.  Definitely a suburban/urban divide but I do know quite a few liberals in my corner of suburbia.  Politics doesn't seem to have quite the vitriol around here that I see other places.  Very diverse racially and ethnically, people from all over the world.  

Good schools, super easy homeschooling, lots and lots of homeschoolers with many opportunities for classes and gatherings.  

Ocean beaches, tons of lakes, mountains, rivers, historical sites, easy access to NYC and Philadelphia.

Never having to pump your own gas. 

Four seasons. 

Cost of living....yeah, I got nothing there.   Jobs tend to pay better than they would in other areas. 

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7 hours ago, SDMomof3 said:

I live in San Diego, CA we just moved to the suburbs. We love it here, lots of things to do. We are in driving distance to the beach, mountains, and desert. The weather is great all year. Lots of homeschoolers in the area. Also great private and public schools. We have some of the best public schools in the country in our area. Only downside is the cost of living.

Whee. One of my offspring is moving there; they are young marrieds with a small family but they won't have trouble fitting in.  A house comparable to the one they grew up in is 7-8 times the cost. 

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13 hours ago, Calizzy said:

I don’t want to tell you because I consider my city one of the best kept secrets 😜🤣

Now I am intrigued. Can you at least share a state? 
 

I have loved living in western NC. Want to go back there badly. 

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I've lived several places. I loved them all. I think you make up your mind to love wherever you are, highlight the good parts, and try to overlook the not-good parts. Seriously.  I've lived in TX (currently - we've lived in various parts), Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia, Illinois, Nebraska - in the states, and they've all been good. Different good points for each, different negatives for each.
Decide what is important to you?
   -freedom to homeschool your way (pick TX!)
   -freedom from state income tax?
   -Low cost of living
   -proximity to relatives (or maybe you want away from them!)
   -weather (cold, hot, or a variety of seasons)
   -cheap land?
   -large lots for your house? 
   -property taxes?
   -proximity to major medical centers 
   -urban/rural? 

Texas fits most of these - except for the weather if you are against humidity. But on the plus side for humidity - I think it helps with your skin. It really does keep your skin moist (which is important as you age!). Whenever I leave here, it feels like my skin is just peeling off anywhere else as it is so dry. 


Like-minded folks? I've seen areas change. COVID, I think, has done that slightly here - or at least I'm seeing more of a divide

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10 hours ago, MissLemon said:

ETA: DH and I are considering relocating to PA. I can't do anymore deep red states (Alabama and Texas), and he can't do anymore deep blue states (California and Illinois). So, PA is probably where we will land. 

We found Lancaster County, PA to be pretty red, although maybe it’s purple. Too rural and not enough bookstores, coffee shops, museums. Lots of driving. If you go to PA, sounds like you need a big city. 

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The Oklahoma City area.

The prices in Austin have meant a lot of people who would have gone to Austin, are going other places instead. OKC for one.  

The OKC area is flourishing.  

Cost of living is low to us.  For people we talk to here, they say the OKC area is expensive compared to surrounding areas.  

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Another voice defending NJ, LOL.  We lived there (northern part) for 7 years and had our first two kids there.  Solid sense of civic participation, good schools, wide range of faith organizations, nice housing with a good amount of space.  There are now good train links to NYC (this only was completed after we sold our house, sigh) so easy access to all the CULTCHA.  Considerably lower COLA than the Westchester/CT side of New York, and the beaches are, truly, soooooo much better than the stooopid Long Island Sound nonsense we have here.

It's called the GARDEN STATE for reasons, people.  Don't judge it from the vantage point of I-95.  Get off the highway and take an actual look.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Halftime Hope said:

Whee. One of my offspring is moving there; they are young marrieds with a small family but they won't have trouble fitting in.  A house comparable to the one they grew up in is 7-8 times the cost. 

I hope they understand the housing market here. There is hardly any inventory and, unless you are a cash buyer, expect to have your offer rejected over and over again because you are competing with 100 other people, all paying well over list price on houses that are 20% more than the price they were last year. I have a VA loan, but no one will take it because they don't want to deal with the hassle of the VA, so we have stopped looking for a house at this point. And that's for a 750k 3 bedroom starter townhouse. Forget about buying a detached home unless you don't mind being 40+ minutes outside the city (my DH refuses to commute that far for his mental health).

And the rental market is equally horrific. We are paying 4300/month for a 3 bedroom apartment. It took me a month of looking and putting in applications to finally get that place.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/for-many-home-buyers-a-5-down-payment-isnt-enough-11624095181

Many borrowers who can afford only small upfront costs get loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration or the Department of Veterans Affairs. In an April NAR survey of real-estate agents, 27% said sellers were unlikely to accept an offer with an FHA or VA loan, and another 6% said sellers would refuse such an offer. These loans are less attractive to sellers because they have stricter closing conditions, real-estate agents say.

While mortgage originations of all types rose last year as home buying surged, FHA and VA loans lost market share to conventional loans. FHA loans, which often go to first-time buyers, accounted for 10% of home purchases in the first quarter of 2021, the second-lowest level since 2008, according to Attom Data Solutions.

“It’s very hard to get my FHA offers accepted,” said Olivia Chavez Serrano, a real-estate agent in Los Angeles.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-home-price-growth-rose-to-record-in-april-11624972608

Phoenix had the fastest year-over-year home-price growth in the country for the 23rd straight month, at 22.3%, followed by San Diego at 21.6%. Charlotte, N.C., Cleveland, Dallas, Denver and Seattle all recorded record-high annual price gains.

Edited by SeaConquest
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East Tennessee is gorgeous. Mountains, lakes, so many parks, tons of outdoor activities. The seasons are pretty. There's just enough snow to be pretty, but it melts before it gets ugly. Summers don't get too hot, and there is always a breeze in my yard, so even 92 doesn't feel nearly as bad.  No state income tax. They leave wildflowers by the highways, so there is always something pretty to look at. This is the first place I've lived in as an adult where I was not the only volunteer (kid activities, HOA, library, etc). On the downside, since I moved here three years ago, the price of housing has almost doubled. It's  currently about $180/sqft, and that price does not vary based on how the house was finished. A 1960s house that was never remodeled will go for the same price as a one year old house with the same square footage. Lot size doesn't really change the price much either. New construction is slightly cheaper than buying an existing house because there is a housing shortage, and people don't want to wait long enough for something to be built. Despite the price of lumber, houses are popping up everywhere. Most houses here have tiny kitchens because people eat out for almost every meal. Many, many people we know do not know how to cook at all. This place does have the best selection of restaurants I've seen outside of CA or Omaha, NE. We ended up building a house to have a big kitchen and walk in pantry (I cook from scratch due to multiple food allergies in the family).

I have also lived in western WA (too $$$), NE (too flat, hot/cold), Tulsa, OK (too icy and religious), and northern GA (too corrupt, hot, humid, and no breeze - you can't really fly a kite except maybe 2 days a year).

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2 hours ago, SeaConquest said:

I hope they understand the housing market here. There is hardly any inventory and, unless you are a cash buyer, expect to have your offer rejected over and over again because you are competing with 100 other people, all paying well over list price on houses that are 20% more than the price they were last year. I have a VA loan, but no one will take it because they don't want to deal with the hassle of the VA, so we have stopped looking for a house at this point. And that's for a 750k 3 bedroom starter townhouse. Forget about buying a detached home unless you don't mind being 40+ minutes outside the city (my DH refuses to commute that far for his mental health).

And the rental market is equally horrific. We are paying 4300/month for a 3 bedroom apartment. It took me a month of looking and putting in applications to finally get that place.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/for-many-home-buyers-a-5-down-payment-isnt-enough-11624095181

Many borrowers who can afford only small upfront costs get loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration or the Department of Veterans Affairs. In an April NAR survey of real-estate agents, 27% said sellers were unlikely to accept an offer with an FHA or VA loan, and another 6% said sellers would refuse such an offer. These loans are less attractive to sellers because they have stricter closing conditions, real-estate agents say.

While mortgage originations of all types rose last year as home buying surged, FHA and VA loans lost market share to conventional loans. FHA loans, which often go to first-time buyers, accounted for 10% of home purchases in the first quarter of 2021, the second-lowest level since 2008, according to Attom Data Solutions.

“It’s very hard to get my FHA offers accepted,” said Olivia Chavez Serrano, a real-estate agent in Los Angeles.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-home-price-growth-rose-to-record-in-april-11624972608

Phoenix had the fastest year-over-year home-price growth in the country for the 23rd straight month, at 22.3%, followed by San Diego at 21.6%. Charlotte, N.C., Cleveland, Dallas, Denver and Seattle all recorded record-high annual price gains.

They closed already. It is outside San Diego proper, but commuting is not an issue, due to the wonders of remote work -- thanks, pandemic! I worry about housing bubbles, but they want to live there forever, or so they say, in which case it won't matter. 

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I don't know what "like-minded" means, but I like living in a Midwestern swing state.  Nice diversity of thought, landscape, culture, and weather.  At an affordable price.  🙂

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