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Old 08-26-2013, 05:46 PM   #21
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Huntsville, AL........near but not as crowded as Nashville/Chattanooga (each about 100 miles away) southern end of Appalacian Mtns nearby, little snow, prosperous
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:39 PM   #22
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Have you looked at Folsom, California?

Close to Lake Folsom, and only a couple hours from Lake Tahoe. Lots of biking trails.

Less than an hour from SMF ( Sacramento Airport )

Two hours from the SF Bay area, Pacific Ocean, and all that the area offers.

Good Schools.

Reasonable weather. A little hot in summer.

Housing a little high - about $375-$450K for average 2000 sq ft, 4 bdrm SFH.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:51 PM   #23
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Okay, well....I'll throw it out there because so far nobody else has mentioned it and we seem to be on every "top whatever" list.....

Austin.

Year round cycliing, affordable homes, Kindergarten thru UT, lakes, etc...etc....

Just bring your own bags. The city outlawed plastic shopping bags this year.

The scoundrels.......
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:59 PM   #24
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Except for home price (median = $378,000) it sounds like you are describing Santa Rosa, CA.

Good schools.
Great weather. Some rain in the winter, otherwise always outdoor weather.
30 minutes from the coast..lakes even closer.
Great biking. Levi Leipheimer's GranFondo is held there annually. Tour of California passes through every year and ended there in 2013.
Population: 150,000
Has its own regional airport, 70 minutes to SFO
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Old 08-26-2013, 09:07 PM   #25
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Eugene, Oregon
I did Mountain Bike Oregon in Oakridge last year and had a blast. How does Bend compare, especially weather wise? I know I'm being picky but not sure if the damp winters would bum me out.


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Originally Posted by LakeTravis View Post
Okay, well....I'll throw it out there because so far nobody else has mentioned it and we seem to be on every "top whatever" list.....

Austin.

Year round cycliing, affordable homes, Kindergarten thru UT, lakes, etc...etc....

Just bring your own bags. The city outlawed plastic shopping bags this year.

The scoundrels.......
Great city, but I think I'd want to be close to some mountains and national parks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coolius View Post
Have you looked at Folsom, California?

Close to Lake Folsom, and only a couple hours from Lake Tahoe. Lots of biking trails.

Less than an hour from SMF ( Sacramento Airport )

Two hours from the SF Bay area, Pacific Ocean, and all that the area offers.

Good Schools.

Reasonable weather. A little hot in summer.

Housing a little high - about $375-$450K for average 2000 sq ft, 4 bdrm SFH.
Quote:
Originally Posted by scrinch View Post
Except for home price (median = $378,000) it sounds like you are describing Santa Rosa, CA.

Good schools.
Great weather. Some rain in the winter, otherwise always outdoor weather.
30 minutes from the coast..lakes even closer.
Great biking. Levi Leipheimer's GranFondo is held there annually. Tour of California passes through every year and ended there in 2013.
Population: 150,000
Has its own regional airport, 70 minutes to SFO
My wife and I like the cultural diversity and attitude of many Californians. I've been to Sacramento, Tahoe and San Francisco down to San Diego but haven't been to Folsom or Santa Rosa. California would probably be our top choice right now, but we'd have to push off retirement by a few years to afford the steeper home prices.

Overall, I think our top choices would be California, Colorado or my home state - North Carolina. I'd like to check out some of the other places mentioned though.
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:31 AM   #26
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Bank5, no comparison between CA and NC, IMO. Santa Rosa and surrounding area is nice. How does Tahoe compare to other parts of CA you've been to?
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:01 AM   #27
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Check out Fort Collins, Colorado
Colorado would be nice, but I would have to keep a small house here for winter getaways. Not sure my old bones could adjust to several months of cold winter weather. But for a young family, I think it would be a great area.

I'm still kicking around the idea of buying a condo or patio home on the AL Coast. I like Fairhope which is a nice retiree kind of town and not too far from Mobile. Plus I have some family in the area.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:05 AM   #28
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Mooresville NC - close to Charlotte, Lake Norman, great biking
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:23 AM   #29
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Bank5, no comparison between CA and NC, IMO. Santa Rosa and surrounding area is nice. How does Tahoe compare to other parts of CA you've been to?
I love Tahoe. I went skiing there in April and people were skiing in shorts. Drove back to San Francisco the same day and people were swimming in the ocean. Tahoe might be a little remote for me (and especially my wife) to want to settle down though.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:40 AM   #30
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I did Mountain Bike Oregon in Oakridge last year and had a blast. How does Bend compare, especially weather wise? I know I'm being picky but not sure if the damp winters would bum me out.
Bend is in the rain shadow of the Cascades, so it has a much drier climate than western Oregon. Bend is well-known for having a very high percentage of sunny days. It's high desert, so it will be hotter in the summer and colder in the winter.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:30 AM   #31
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Except for home price (median = $378,000) it sounds like you are describing Santa Rosa, CA.

Good schools.
Great weather. Some rain in the winter, otherwise always outdoor weather.
30 minutes from the coast..lakes even closer.
Great biking. Levi Leipheimer's GranFondo is held there annually. Tour of California passes through every year and ended there in 2013.
Population: 150,000
Has its own regional airport, 70 minutes to SFO
Its too bad Santa Rosa is so ridden with gang problems. But what city in CA doesn't have the gang issues?
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:45 AM   #32
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Have you looked at Folsom, California?

Close to Lake Folsom, and only a couple hours from Lake Tahoe. Lots of biking trails.

Less than an hour from SMF ( Sacramento Airport )

Two hours from the SF Bay area, Pacific Ocean, and all that the area offers.

Good Schools.

Reasonable weather. A little hot in summer.

Housing a little high - about $375-$450K for average 2000 sq ft, 4 bdrm SFH.

DH and I are thinking of relocating to the Folsom area in a few years. Compared to where we live now (smack-dab in the SF Bay area) the home prices are reasonable -- I guess that's the advantage of living in a high cost area, most other places seem reasonable in comparison. We're avid (road) cyclists and the American River Bike Trail is a big draw for us. The only downside is that it does get mighty warm there ... for us. Living right near the bay makes us wimps when it comes to the heat.
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:22 PM   #33
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Bank5, no comparison between CA and NC, IMO. Santa Rosa and surrounding area is nice. How does Tahoe compare to other parts of CA you've been to?
Where in NC have you been? I'd much rather live in Asheville/Brevard, Boone, Chapel Hill, Raleigh or the Outer Banks than many parts California. Chapel Hill/Cary/Apex is frequently listed on the top places to live in the US
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:53 PM   #34
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Eastlake/Chula Vista, CA. Hits all your marks.
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:53 PM   #35
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DH and I are thinking of relocating to the Folsom area in a few years. Compared to where we live now (smack-dab in the SF Bay area) the home prices are reasonable -- I guess that's the advantage of living in a high cost area, most other places seem reasonable in comparison. We're avid (road) cyclists and the American River Bike Trail is a big draw for us. The only downside is that it does get mighty warm there ... for us. Living right near the bay makes us wimps when it comes to the heat.

Rosie - it's not that bad, honest. And what is Air Conditioning for, anyway?

You could choose to live closer to the lake, and get some cooling effect from the water. I heard that it make a little difference, but not being in that area, I have no actual experience.

Utility rates are not quite as high as PGE, and the overall cost of living is a little lower than the Bay Area.

( I lived in San Jose for 17 years ).

But housing is about 65% of that in the Bay Area. That's a huge factor for ER consideration. Just be sure to avoid newer housing developments that have Mello-Roos taxes on the property in addition to the usual tax.
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:05 PM   #36
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Where in NC have you been? I'd much rather live in Asheville/Brevard, Boone, Chapel Hill, Raleigh or the Outer Banks than many parts California. Chapel Hill/Cary/Apex is frequently listed on the top places to live in the US
I don't want to get too specific but I've spent a lot of time in most of those citiess. Obviously everyone's definition of "best weather" varies, but inner NC gets very hot and brutally humid in the summers. The coastal areas are a bit better, but Outer Banks is expensive and prone to having to rebuild. And winters have long enough periods of being too cold to really enjoy the outdoors. OTOH, there is lots of green and housing is very affordable. Also, CLT is a hub for US Air if you are into travel.

I'm generalizing, but in terms of cultural progressiveness, my experience was that NC was about 10 years behind my midwest home town which in turn was about 10 years behind much of CA.

I think one of the reasons research triangle is often rated so highly is for jobs, which presumably is of little concern to you and the retired?
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:35 PM   #37
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Bend is in the rain shadow of the Cascades, so it has a much drier climate than western Oregon. Bend is well-known for having a very high percentage of sunny days. It's high desert, so it will be hotter in the summer and colder in the winter.
One of the things I like about the weather in Bend - Even when it's hot during the day, it pretty much always cools off significantly in the evening. It's pretty common to have 30 degrees between the high and low temperatures, sometimes as much as 40.

Since you mentioned Oakridge, it's pretty easy to do a day trip from Bend to ride there. (Just did it in June.) It's also really interesting to see the transition in the plant life and terrain driving between Bend and Oakridge.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:56 PM   #38
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I don't want to get too specific but I've spent a lot of time in most of those citiess. Obviously everyone's definition of "best weather" varies, but inner NC gets very hot and brutally humid in the summers. The coastal areas are a bit better, but Outer Banks is expensive and prone to having to rebuild. And winters have long enough periods of being too cold to really enjoy the outdoors. OTOH, there is lots of green and housing is very affordable. Also, CLT is a hub for US Air if you are into travel.

I'm generalizing, but in terms of cultural progressiveness, my experience was that NC was about 10 years behind my midwest home town which in turn was about 10 years behind much of CA.

I think one of the reasons research triangle is often rated so highly is for jobs, which presumably is of little concern to you and the retired?
I don't mind the heat and find that I acclimate well to the humidity. Having a change in seasons in nice and I'd take a long summer over a long winter. The average high in July in most parts of the state is in the 80's -- it's humid, but not as hot as many places.

I'm not sure when you were here, but the Triangle has had a really big influx of people from all over the country. I'd say only about 10% of my friends from here grew up in NC. Chapel Hill/Carrboro are pretty progressive, I'd say even compared to California standards. Before moving here, I never thought I'd ever live in the south, but the Triangle feels far from the deep south.
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:35 PM   #39
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Having lived in both North Carolina (Triangle Area) and California (Bay Area), I like both states very much. I think that California has more to offer for someone interested in outdoorsy pursuits, but the cost of living is a big hurdle.
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:29 AM   #40
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DH and I are thinking of relocating to the Folsom area in a few years.
I live in Folsom if you have any questions about it. The summer weather is great for vegetable gardening
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