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Old 05-31-2012, 02:04 PM   #61
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[*]Housing can't be outrageously expensive (or we'd just stay in NYC). We can easily afford a house in the $500k-$750k range and could stretch that to $1.1m or so for a perfect house in a perfect city/town. We need at least a 3/2 with a garage and prefer a pool. We do not want a giant house like we used to have in Texas, something in the 2500-3000 sf range would be more than enough.
Since I've been looking at real estate in San Diego, I'd say with your budget you could probably get something pretty great. I don't know about schooling, a lot of people I know just buy houses in the best neighborhoods so their kids can go to public school.

If you decide on San Diego, I'd be happy to help point out good and bad areas of town. Someone mentioned Escondido, which I find way too hot in the summer, and I've never heard about any restaurants that are worth the drive.
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Old 05-31-2012, 05:55 PM   #62
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For the NC posters, Raleigh-Durham and Chapel Hill would have been near the top of our list except for the weather. It appears from research that NC is basically just as humid as Texas; is that not your experience?
I've lived in both Raleigh/Cary and Austin. Raleigh-Durham is more humid, but not as hot, and the summer isn't nearly as long.
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Old 05-31-2012, 06:36 PM   #63
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My goodness.

As at least one other poster has mentioned, this thread is setting up to be a "Yeah, but" thread. As in "Yeah, your answer makes sense, but..."

Instead of depending on the random kindness of Internet strangers, maybe you should start sorting databases. Somewhere on the Internet, or in the Montessori/Waldorf systems, there has to be a list of all the schools. Surely you can find a similar list for airports. Then you can work with the typical "Best 25 Cities" lists for climate and cost of living.

I was going to suggest Oahu until I realized there's an Outback in Waikiki. So never mind.
I'm surprised no one said this sooner. The OP sure has a lot of criteria to fill. I won't try to convince him to move to Calgary (we do celebrate our Redneck heritage every Stampede afterall; not to mention the snow!)
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Old 05-31-2012, 06:53 PM   #64
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I've lived in both Raleigh/Cary and Austin. Raleigh-Durham is more humid
Bummer. That's what I was afraid of.
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Old 05-31-2012, 07:03 PM   #65
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Bummer. That's what I was afraid of.
As you undoubtedly know, no other part of the US will have a climate as moderate as the left coast. You just need to choose a temperature range and pick the area that matches from warm/south to cooler-damper/north. No surprise...
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Old 06-01-2012, 06:25 AM   #66
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My thanks to all the helpful people on this thread. We're heading out to Northern California the last week of June to look at schools and houses. Very, very excited.
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Old 06-01-2012, 07:08 AM   #67
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Hush up now!

heh heh heh -
I see you live north of KC. Do you like it? I love to visit.
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Old 06-02-2012, 08:07 AM   #68
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Friend of mine always said he would never live north of the signs that state "bridge freezes before roadway".
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Old 06-02-2012, 10:19 AM   #69
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Friend of mine always said he would never live north of the signs that state "bridge freezes before roadway".
We have signs to that effect here in south Louisiana, so he'd have to move pretty far south.

Instead of putting signs like that all over the country, I would suggest two questions on all written driving tests: "Do bridges freeze in cold weather?" And, "Which usually freezes first? (1) bridges (2) roadway" . Then the money to make all of those useless signs could be saved and used for something worthwhile.
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Old 06-02-2012, 10:27 AM   #70
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Friend of mine always said he would never live north of the signs that state "bridge freezes before roadway".
You could follow in Ulysses' footsteps and walk south with a hockey stick until someone says "what's that?"
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:16 PM   #71
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Friend of mine always said he would never live north of the signs that state "bridge freezes before roadway".
We had to explain that one to our daughter during a Mainland trip. She thought the road engineers had installed special refrigeration units in the bridges.

She still doesn't have much experience with the concept, and now she's a little paranoid about it. Every time it's cold out she slows down as she approaches the bridge...
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Old 06-02-2012, 08:13 PM   #72
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You could follow in Ulysses' footsteps and walk south with a hockey stick until someone says "what's that?"
Gumby, that really tickled my funnybone! Still laughing.
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:03 AM   #73
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My thanks to all the helpful people on this thread. We're heading out to Northern California the last week of June to look at schools and houses. Very, very excited.
Being from Northern California, and having lived years in Southern California, I cannot now recommend either place. This is due to the now high State taxes, and declining infrastructure.

Some people here recommend Napa area - very scenic and my original home, but a bit too much of a hassle if you need to get to a major airport with any frequency (SFO). Highway 101 is a disaster now. If that is needed, eliminate anything north of San Rafael. I liked LA for school and work - would not live there in retirement - congestion and lack of public transportation.

If money is no object and neither is easy large airport access, and you have your sights on California, try Monterrey. Coming from NYC you must learn to depend on the car now if you go anywhere in CA, except perhaps San Francisco - in the City. I admit to having a current bias to the West Coast as I have a house in Seattle although not living there at the moment.

Good luck in your search - rent first somewhere - best way to figure things out.
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:12 AM   #74
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We had to explain that one to our daughter during a Mainland trip. She thought the road engineers had installed special refrigeration units in the bridges.

She still doesn't have much experience with the concept, and now she's a little paranoid about it. Every time it's cold out she slows down as she approaches the bridge...
Good one Nords! Better safe than sorry.
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:07 PM   #75
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Well let me give you a Californian's perspective. We live in Ventura County (between LA and Santa Barbara, and over the hills from Malibu). The ocean is 45 minutes away. LAX is 1 hour away. LA is one hour away. Santa Barbara is one hour away. We live in one of the lowest crime areas of the country. The weather is nearly ideal.

But we have a large suburban house and are wanting to downsize. Ideally, a highrise condo with a great downtown we could afford! But the more we look around and consider things, the more we think we might just buy a smaller place nearby. We really WOULD like to leave the screwed up state finances. But the ease of travel access, amenities, great weather, and low crime is pretty compelling -- in spite of the screwed up state government. If taxes get too high or we get desperate enough, we could move out. But not yet willing to do so.

If I were looking to move, places like Las Vegas (cheap, but more downscale/blue collar) or Colorado (pretty, but still pretty expensive in Denver/Boulder, and snow) or Medford, OR (pretty, but kind of far from a big city for travel purposes) are places that we've considered. We still can't say we have found anywhere we'd rather be unless financial reasons forced our hand.
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:43 PM   #76
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Austin's good!

We are transplants from elsewhere in Texas to the Austin area, and loving it. Property taxes are very high if you 'over buy' but it sounds as if you have seen sense on that score. There are lots of areas with good school districts to live in and private non-religious schools to try if that doesn't work out.

The summers are ridiculously hot, and sometimes very dry but the humidity is not so bad. Plan on vacationing for many, many weeks away in the summer - that fits in with school vacations - then enjoy the fall, winter and spring.

This is still the Bible belt but we haven't found it too oppressive, and have some like-minded friends. Others, who we know are churchy don't push it down our throats like we've experienced elsewhere in Texas.

YMMV
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:25 PM   #77
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I was just looking at vacation rentals in the Shasta Cascade area. I haven't explored that area before. The climate looks quite appealing. I think I may have to rent a cabin in the area next year.

Has anyone spent time around here? Is it beautiful?

Shasta Cascade Vacation Rentals by Owner - VRBOŽ Shasta Cascade Lodging, Cabins
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:26 PM   #78
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To the Californians: I keep hearing about the economic problems the state is having and am quite aware of the extent of the problem as reported by the media.

My question is this...if I'm retired, sending my kid to a private school, and not on any gov't programs (that I can think of anyway), how would this problem actually impact me and my family? I get obvious stuff like roads are fixed less often and hear the public schools are laying off teachers (which wouldn't have anything to do with us). Otherwise, why would any retiree without kids in public schools really care about it? I'm not trying to sound naive, I'm saying I've lived in a state with no budget/services and a state with a huge budget/tons of services and there was literally almost no difference to us in either place because of our odd lifestyle.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:42 PM   #79
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I'd think any state with a deficit (most) is going to have to reduce services or increase (tax) revenues, most likely both. Some services may not impact retirees, but some may.

In that CA reportedly has higher than average taxes and a larger deficit (% and $) than most state, I'd be concerned that income, sales and/or property taxes could increase from already relatively high levels. Retirees will still have income, still make purchases and still have property. If that happens, more residents might leave making the problem even more acute. It's my understanding that people relocating to CA has dropped drastically though I don't know if it's a net increase or decrease at present...
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Old 06-04-2012, 07:46 PM   #80
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My family and friends are all still in California - they are not suffering. Property taxes are held steady by prop 13. Income taxes are high - but he is not making income. Sales taxes are high, but that is a function of how much you buy. I live in the suburbs of Boston, a state with a balanced budget and our roads are much worse (it's the weather).

My #1 reason to not move back there later is that it is crowded. I grew up there when it wasn't crowded. Someone from Manhattan would not likely see it as crowded.
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