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subzero1906 Jul 27th, 2007 10:25 AM

NE HOUSTON QUESTIONS
 
My question pertains to the NE Houston suburbs. We are looking to move to Houston sometime in 2008. I have a wife and a 4month old. We both are college administrators so in all likelihood we will be working somewhere near the Tex Med Ctr or near one of the colleges or universities. We are attracted to NE Houston-suburbs because:

1. Ease of commute towards downtown via 59
2. More house for your money
3. The area does not seem to be overcrowded compared to Katy and other areas

We have visited and stayed in the Humble area a few times. We visited Kingwood, Walden on Lake Houston, the subdivisions south of FM 1960 bordering Lake Houston, Crosby, drove past Summerwood. We really liked Walden, the homes bordering Lake Houston, and Kingwood.

About how long is the commute down 59 to the Med Crt in the AM? Would we be better served if we looked at a community closer in?

How does Summerwood's proximity to NE Houston-proper effect crime rates?
Crosby seemed really secluded and it lacked the amenities close by (Wal Mart, Target, ect). Is this on purpose or is it a case of "they just haven't moved out there yet?"

We are from OH and we don't live in a subdivision so we are not familiar with how much the typical HOA fee would add to the mortgage. I assume if you live in a golf community and you golf you pay more. HOA's seem to predominate so I was wondering what the typical fee would be in Kingwood or Summerwood for a 200k home.

Thanks!

rkkwan Jul 27th, 2007 10:41 AM

The widening of US59 completed just about 4 years ago, so as it stands, it flows pretty well compared to a few other Houston freeways. I live on the opposite side of town, but I do need to drop of my parents or relatives at IAH early in the morning and then head to work at TMC.

Traffic moves along until just before downtown. It's about 30 miles from Walden on Lake Houston to TMC. I don't know about traffic on 1960 in the morning, but that 7 miles may be relatively slow. The remaining 23 miles can take about 40-45 minutes during rush hour.

In the PM rush, there's often a long backup for the 1960 exit on northbound US59.

I think you need to actually do those drives yourselves and decide if that's too far for you or not.

dfr4848 Jul 27th, 2007 12:06 PM

To add to rkkwan's comments, and I agree with his driving estimates. Some places NE, like Crosby, are more secluded and haven't been in the mainstream growth pattern like Kingwood. You'd probably get differing opinions as to whether that's good or bad. Kingwood is certainly one of the more highly rated places in that area.

The one thing to certainly keep in mind are the school districts. In case you're unaware, we have independent school districts - and their boundaries cross city limits, county lines, and have their own tax assessments which can have different tax rates - and they can have very different academic ratings. With a child, I'd really do some homework if that's important to you. For ex, you can live in Kingwood, but be zoned to 2 different school districts - and one is rated much higher than the other - so ask very specific questions about which streets are zoned to which districts [yes, a school districts boundary can literally run down the middle of a street].

We live about 10 min from the TMC, so I really can't tell you about HOAs in the NE. We love being close in and have very low commute times, but houses are more expensive. And to answer one of your other questions, yes, you would pay more if you live in a golf community and golf.

Hope this helps some.

maryanntex Jul 27th, 2007 03:20 PM

Have you considered renting for awhile? I think that would give you time to get a better idea of what you'd be happy with. Also, are you planning to live in Houston permanently? If not, you'd would be better off buying a smaller house closer in. Those appreciate much more than houses far out. You say "in all likelihood.." Do you have jobs yet? There are colleges in many different parts of Houston. HBU, for instance, is about as far ss you can get from NE Houston suburbs.

volcanogirl Jul 27th, 2007 05:14 PM

I agree - renting is a great idea if you've never lived here before. The city is so big and diverse that it would give you a better idea of the different areas and drive times. Friends of ours at the office moved here from Chicago and rented for a year before they found their dream house in Kingwood.

moldyhotelsaregross Jul 27th, 2007 08:14 PM

subzero - You may want to address your questions to kingwood.com.


moldyhotelsaregross Jul 27th, 2007 08:18 PM

Oh, there is alot of good information on that site and alot of stuff to be ignored.


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