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Old 10-25-2017, 09:57 AM   #41
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I can't speak of the Miami area but we moved to the west coast of Florida, New Port Richey (Tarpon Springs area) one year ago and love it here.
More traffic here than I was used to in Ct, but I'm not ready to say the drivers are worse.
We moved mainly to get away from the cold and to retire with very low taxes
My property taxes are under $700, they were $5K up north).
We love how friendly the state/county workers are. We actually got thanked with a smile when we got our driver's licenses and vehicle registrations! The in and out in 15 minutes was a real bonus. (in Ct it would have been hours).

Best of luck in your decision!!
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Old 10-25-2017, 10:10 AM   #42
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Its a shame what has happened to Ft Myers. You have now a 1% chance per year of being a victim of violent crime in that city. Worst than 90% of other cities in the US.

https://www.neighborhoodscout.com/fl/fort-myers/crime

As with all areas of the USA the statistics for violent crime are very localized. You can be in a low crime city but a high crime local neighborhood or visa versa quite easily - pays to do your research carefully and in detail.
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Old 10-25-2017, 10:12 AM   #43
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I can't speak of the Miami area but we moved to the west coast of Florida, New Port Richey (Tarpon Springs area) one year ago and love it here.
More traffic here than I was used to in Ct, but I'm not ready to say the drivers are worse.
We moved mainly to get away from the cold and to retire with very low taxes
My property taxes are under $700, they were $5K up north).
We love how friendly the state/county workers are. We actually got thanked with a smile when we got our driver's licenses and vehicle registrations! The in and out in 15 minutes was a real bonus. (in Ct it would have been hours).

Best of luck in your decision!!

Yes - could not agree more. When we finally move our primary residence from here in NY (across the sound from where you were) we will have much lower property taxes , lose the state income tax , and lower the sales tax as well.
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Old 10-25-2017, 11:57 AM   #44
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He said the job is in Miami Beach. A one hour commute doesn't cover much territory. There are a few marinas that allow true liveaboards (i.e. that is your legal address) but if you have residency elsewhere and have mail forwarded most all are set up to accomodate seasonal liveaboards with monthly leases. Rates are going to be 3-4x what New Bern is. There are slips behind private residences available, but almost all do not allow live aboards for owner preference or city ordinance issues.

Best bet is to go down and spend some time, talk to some locals, interview some marinas, drive around.
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Old 10-25-2017, 12:42 PM   #45
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Best bet is to go down and spend some time, talk to some locals, interview some marinas, drive around.
You can't get a feel by using Realtor.com or Zillow when you don't know the areas, the streets where the houses are. You must spend time. And, if by some chance you decide to come before seeing, then you can make it work. Just keep in mind the first rental area might not be where you'll want to end up later, or the first marina the same.
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Old 10-25-2017, 01:07 PM   #46
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Used to live in Apex, so I'm pretty familiar with the Cary area. Loved going to Courtney's for brunch when we lived there. Are they still open?

Southeast Florida is probably the most expensive part of the state. You will benefit from no income tax, and no personal property tax on your boat. Property tax on a home will be more than some areas, but less than others. If I recall correctly, the property tax in Apex was a little less than our home down here, but not a huge difference.

I recall reading some years back that almost 2/3rds of the people who move to Florida, move away again within 2 years. Mainly because they visit in the winter months and think it is wonderful (which it is), but then after a summer of heat, humidity, bugs, and daily thunderstorms they start having regrets. I personally know one woman who moved down here, but was so freaked out by the little lizards, which are everywhere, that she had to leave. (And "little lizards" is not a euphemism for alligators. I'm talking about 4-5 inch anoles. Don't even get me started on the bozos who move down here and then go bat-crap crazy when they realize that there are alligators in the ponds!)

For that reason, I generally advise folks to spend some time down here in July or August before they move down. Sounds like you may not have that option. Regardless, a visit would be a good idea. Perusing zillow.com before hand would not hurt. The plain fact is that $200k is not going to buy you anywhere near as much in Southeast Florida as it will in and around Cary.

Good luck.
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Old 10-25-2017, 02:14 PM   #47
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I will now add that smaller is better. While 200k may not buy as much as it will here, we have already discussed downsizing. A condo would be ok (I think) as long as we can keep the dog. Maybe a trip down is a good idea. Maybe find a place I can stay for a week. Touch base with a realtor and a bartender.
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Old 10-25-2017, 02:51 PM   #48
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I will now add that smaller is better. While 200k may not buy as much as it will here, we have already discussed downsizing. A condo would be ok (I think) as long as we can keep the dog. Maybe a trip down is a good idea. Maybe find a place I can stay for a week. Touch base with a realtor and a bartender.
That's what most do, downsize. It still can be mentally painful to see that the house you bought for $200k doesn't compare to $200k in Cary. Location location location. And South Florida is a location. Fortunately not as pricey as NY and California.

Maybe stay in different places during the week.

And, if you scout out some areas you like but worry about the commute, there's a simple answer. Drive it during morning and afternoon rush hour. You'll think perhaps it wasn't bad so be sure to mentally multiply it by 240.

Drive around, but also walk some areas. Oh, scared to walk down that street? That answers that one.
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Old 10-25-2017, 03:07 PM   #49
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I will now add that smaller is better. While 200k may not buy as much as it will here, we have already discussed downsizing. A condo would be ok (I think) as long as we can keep the dog. Maybe a trip down is a good idea. Maybe find a place I can stay for a week. Touch base with a realtor and a bartender.
I used to live in SE FLA and it is the worst place I have ever lived. Could not wait to escape. The traffic on I40 is child's play compared to the insanity of I95 and Turnpike traffic during rush hour.

I live in the Triangle and there is not an area in any of the local cities I would fear driving through. Some places are a bit iffy but not like SE Flordia. There are areas in South Florida you simply do not enter. The bad thing is, unless you are a local, you don't really know where the bad areas are located. You can be in a "safe" area but make a wrong turn and you are in a very not safe place.

Unless it has changed, getting from downtown Miami onto I95 required a couple of 90 degree turns. If you were not in the right lane you ended up in a VERY nasty, bad part of town.

MANY people in SE Florida are flat out rude. I was shell shocked by the rudeness when I moved down there. SW Florida was a night and day difference BUT that area has grown dramatically which makes me wonder if it is as bad as SE Florida.

When I lived down there, 2-3 decades ago, a nice town house in a good area started at $130,000. Just went and looked on Zillow and got some odd prices for that development, anywhere from $150K-330K. The condo I used to live in, which is about half/third the size of the townhouses, are around $100K. But that condo was likely 800-1000 SF.

When I worked down in Miami, many store signs where in Spanish with English subtitles. Miami really is part of Latin American. I can remember being in the Miami Federal Courthouse in a huge elevator packed with people. There was an older couple of the elevator and the husband was going off about nobody being able to speak English. He was ticked but right. The only native English speakers were him, his wife, my coworker and myself. I saw more than one wanted advert that said you had to be a Spanish speaker to get a job.

I am a native Floridian and I can't see myself ever moving back. The state has changed too much and not for the better. A native from Cary likely feels the same way.

You and the wife really need to travel to where you are thinking of living and working. See the area, check out the traffic, costs, safety, etc. My parents still live in Florida and they pay more in property taxes OR house insurance than we do for property taxes AND house insurance for the same valuations. They had trouble getting house insurance even though they are not in a flood zone.

Later,
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Old 10-25-2017, 03:19 PM   #50
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Dan; all true. But I think you are still holding back. You could have spent more time describing the area from US1 to I 95.
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Old 10-25-2017, 05:21 PM   #51
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Tom, so what you have basically learned here is that you will either really love it or really hate it. I've known lots of folks down there and been one myself and I have never met anyone who was anywhere in between those two feelings.
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Old 10-25-2017, 05:26 PM   #52
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Its a shame what has happened to Ft Myers. You have now a 1% chance per year of being a victim of violent crime in that city. Worst than 90% of other cities in the US.

https://www.neighborhoodscout.com/fl/fort-myers/crime
You have virtually 0% chance if you are not a druggie, gang banger or live in a poor neighborhood. Same holds true in Baltimore and Chicago and Miami.
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Old 10-25-2017, 06:06 PM   #53
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Dan

I disagree with most of it, but respect your opinion. However, don't presume how someone else will feel. I have no idea how he'll feel. We moved from Lake Norman so as big a change as from Cary and we can't imagine now living anywhere else.

What Caltex says on love and hate is true. I may have met a few who were in the middle but not very many. That's why it's so critical the OP explore the area himself.

As to areas I would or wouldn't go into, I've never seen any city with 50,000 people and I've seen a lot with fewer than 5,000 that don't have an area I'd avoid. The routing from the airport was a nightmare from what I've been told, but rectified long ago, long before we arrived here.

I haven't experienced rudeness here to any significant extent. Less than many places. Right now on the way to NYC. Speaking of rude. However, that's over emphasized too. Many are great people with just different speech patterns. Faster and louder seems rude to Southerners.

To the OP, only you and your wife can figure it out. Is it paradise? Or paradise lost?
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Old 10-25-2017, 06:17 PM   #54
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No doubt Florida is inexpensive to live, but I cannot stand the climate.
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Old 10-25-2017, 06:22 PM   #55
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Yeah, I get the virtual part of this. I lived in a great neighborhood in Palm Beach County. At the boom peak in 2005, lots sold for 900k. These were 85 x 100' lots, deep water access, 10 minutes by boat to a divable reef. Right off the ICW. Unfortunately, it was not a gated community.

So, we had the occasional shooting, knife point holdup (right next door to me); old couple tied up in their DR chairs, I'm working in my boat 50 yards away, DEA raid (same house, different owner); 5 black SUV's show up one day, car jacking bailout/lockdown situation, and one firebombing. This was a small neighborhood of 3 dead end streets of about 20 homes each. I did love it there. So, I find myself selling the house, and I'm in my office in NY. I get a call from the realtor. There is a bullet hole in my roof. Huh?? Yes, it was a "celebration" bullet, most likely from July 4, one city over. Bullet goes up, comes down on my daughters bedroom roof. Makes a roof leak. One nite I had a drunk stranger show up in my driveway, horn blaring, looking for his GF. Cop shows up 30 minutes later, guy long gone. I lived there so long, I thought this stuff was normal.

I've seen stop sticks deployed, and lots of police chases. I've been held at gunpoint by the cops at my place of business (long story). I tell these tales at my current workplace and I'm not sure they comprehend this. My wife's last day in SF, and she meets her sister in downtown Delray. The good area. East Atlantic Ave. They had to walk around a body in the street outside of the cafe. A MVA victim. It goes on and on. My very last Miami business trip and I see 3 boys/men in the median of a busy E-W street handcuffed. I travel a lot. I don't see this in Toronto, NYC, Austin, etc.
When I started my job up here, I asked people where all the cops were, really! It was a full month before I saw a traffic stop.

Just know what you are getting into. It all has its price. And, guess what; I'm headed back. Not quite so far south though. So, I'm definately not anti-FL.
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Old 10-25-2017, 06:49 PM   #56
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Yeah, I get the virtual part of this. I lived in a great neighborhood in Palm Beach County. At the boom peak in 2005, lots sold for 900k. These were 85 x 100' lots, deep water access, 10 minutes by boat to a divable reef. Right off the ICW. Unfortunately, it was not a gated community.

So, we had the occasional shooting, knife point holdup (right next door to me); old couple tied up in their DR chairs, I'm working in my boat 50 yards away, DEA raid (same house, different owner); 5 black SUV's show up one day, car jacking bailout/lockdown situation, and one firebombing. This was a small neighborhood of 3 dead end streets of about 20 homes each. I did love it there. So, I find myself selling the house, and I'm in my office in NY. I get a call from the realtor. There is a bullet hole in my roof. Huh?? Yes, it was a "celebration" bullet, most likely from July 4, one city over. Bullet goes up, comes down on my daughters bedroom roof. Makes a roof leak. One nite I had a drunk stranger show up in my driveway, horn blaring, looking for his GF. Cop shows up 30 minutes later, guy long gone. I lived there so long, I thought this stuff was normal.

I've seen stop sticks deployed, and lots of police chases. I've been held at gunpoint by the cops at my place of business (long story). I tell these tales at my current workplace and I'm not sure they comprehend this. My wife's last day in SF, and she meets her sister in downtown Delray. The good area. East Atlantic Ave. They had to walk around a body in the street outside of the cafe. A MVA victim. It goes on and on. My very last Miami business trip and I see 3 boys/men in the median of a busy E-W street handcuffed. I travel a lot. I don't see this in Toronto, NYC, Austin, etc.
When I started my job up here, I asked people where all the cops were, really! It was a full month before I saw a traffic stop.

Just know what you are getting into. It all has its price. And, guess what; I'm headed back. Not quite so far south though. So, I'm definately not anti-FL.
ohhhhhhkayyyyy.....
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:32 PM   #57
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As to areas I would or wouldn't go into, I've never seen any city with 50,000 people and I've seen a lot with fewer than 5,000 that don't have an area I'd avoid.
Really? You must be talking about American cities only.

I'm in a city of 1.2 million and there is no worry of going anywhere at any time of day or night.
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:49 PM   #58
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Really? You must be talking about American cities only.

I'm in a city of 1.2 million and there is no worry of going anywhere at any time of day or night.
Only the three Americas.

My only trip to Australia, I didn't venture into such areas. I take it slightly back. Not so sure how safe I felt in King's Cross, but was accompanied by a local and she insisted on showing me around and knew safe from unsafe I assumed.
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:53 PM   #59
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That’s great I always wanted to live in a crime free city. Where do you live?
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:54 PM   #60
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Thatís great I always wanted to live in a crime free city. Where do you live?
Wifey B: He's not going to tell you. He wants to keep it crime free.
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