Relocate/retire to San Antonio?

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Mar 14th, 2006, 01:16 PM
  #1
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Relocate/retire to San Antonio?

Would be most interested in your opinions - pro and con. We are younger retiree's - both in our fifties.
jkgourmet is offline  
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Mar 14th, 2006, 01:21 PM
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I'm interested in the responses; we have two young kids but also have considered a relocation from California to San Antonio.
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Mar 14th, 2006, 02:27 PM
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We moved to San Antonio almost 17 years ago because of my husband's job. It is a great place to live--it's affordable, the people are friendly, and since we travel a bit I like living half way between the east and west coast. However, we have three years left and it is my hope to leave. The heat is too much for me; the NW side of town, where we live, is becoming more and more congested thanks to over-development and the answer to easing congestion seems to be toll roads (they haven't happened yet but everyone on the north side of town is susceptible unless and until). Are these good reasons not to move here? No. Everyone is different and while I've enjoyed our time here it's not for me and I look forward to moving.
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Mar 14th, 2006, 05:47 PM
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Do you mind being in a city with an abundance of military retirees?
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Mar 14th, 2006, 09:22 PM
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I moved to SA in 1979, have left twice (career opportunties) and returned both times. From my pespective, the suburban and exurban sprawl that AnneMarie talks about is not really SA - you could be in any other city in the country where develoeprs are cramming as many cookie cutter houses into an acre as possible, selling to gullible wannabes who are overly impressed by granite countertops even if they are in badly designed rooms. The net effect is to overtax the infrastrucure and make daily life more difficult. So, I would not recommend moving there. On the other hand, there are some really great "older" neighborhoods in San Antonio - generally the ones inside loop 410 or not far outside it. Beware when a place is listed as "North Central" or anywhere near Loop 1604 - that's real estate gibberish for in the middle of the worst of it all.
intrepid - why does your question make it sound like it is a bad thing to live around military retirees? In my experience, it's rather nice to have neighbors who spent a career living peaceably with others in a community environment - and I am certainly no jarhead type!
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Mar 15th, 2006, 04:08 AM
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Seamus, you forgot to mention the storage facilities, shopping centers and drive-thru restaurants. Sadly, I believe 1604 is going to look like 410 one of these days. It is generic, ugly and, you're right, could be anywhere USA. Downtown as well as other parts of old San Antonio are beautiful, unique, and have character.
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Mar 15th, 2006, 04:15 AM
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There was a nearly identical thread a couple months ago with lots of feedback/info on SA. The individual was still employed, but the move (from CA) made real financial sense for him/her as he/she was at peak earnings and only a few+ years from retirement.
I don't think Texas is a particularly friendly state for young retirees: I retired just before 59; lived in the same house in Dallas for nearly 25 years and had no mortgage for 14 years. High and rising property taxes (with no potential relief until age 65); sales taxes; insurance; utilities; maintenance; cost of help; traffic and eroding quality of life forced me to sell/relocate.
Summer weather gets really old really quickly.
With the exception of food and travel, my savings alone on the items mentioned above pay all my annual living expenses including a housekeeper and gardener 3X/week.
M (SMdA, Gto., MX)
PS I lived among active and retired military families in the DC area and San Diego (University City) in the '70s and my next door neighbor in Dallas was CAPT, JAG, USN, Ret. All great folks and good friends.




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Mar 15th, 2006, 04:55 AM
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I lived there for 3 years. Go visit in the summer and see how you like it. I found the stifing heat and constant high humidity unbearable.
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Mar 15th, 2006, 05:08 AM
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Depending on where you will be moving from, summer heat could well be an issue. We moved here from Tampa and after 8 years there, thought summer here was more than tolerable, and this winter was absolutely beautiful, with the exception of the 3 or 4 days it got into the 40's and this stone house felt so cold! This was our first winter and it was abnormally warm I understand. Don't know how we will fare in a normal year.

San Antonio is the 8th largest city in the US and growing rapidly. It has, however, a small town feel and the downtown, unlike Dallas, has retained its soul, not torn down the old in favor of glass and steel. There is a movement afoot for condo lofts downtown which I expect will take off.

Living in the outskirts does mean traffic, but NOTHING like what we experienced in either Dallas when we lived there, or Tampa...yet. It also means hills, and acreage if you want it. As retirees, you won't be tied to driving into town for work daily and if you love land and nature, rolling hills with gorgeous sunsets, head well north of the 1604 loop, into Bulverde, outside Helotes etc, or the area we found closer to New Braunfels. My husband works downtown--a 30 minute commute which he doesn't mind at all. When he gets home it is to a house with granite counters (LOL), but well designed and sitting on over an acre of land with too many oaks to count, and front and back porches stretching the length of the house on which to enjoy it all. Deer come grazing through the yard twice a day--and all at a price that won't keep you tied to the house, unable to travel. We love it! There is one military family on our street, by the way, a cardiologist. I really don't understand the military reference either! There is something to be said for a town where military retires and wants to remain in the area.

We do find that the best dining is still in town, the one art theater is clear across town from us, and the most luxe grocery shopping is near downtown, so we are making that trip often even outside work hours. Oddly enough, my biggest complaint with San Antonio thus far is the da*n HEB grocery stores that have grocery shopping locked up. Have you ever seen any city, no matter how small, with only one grocery chain? You will here. I digress...living on the outskirts is a trade-off, but one we are content with.

My husband is probably 3 years from retirement, however, has no plans to retire in the traditional sense and wants to keep on doing something. We are not sure we will stay at that point, although we are leaning that way currently. With one of our kids in Dallas, probably permanently, we have definite ties, and this area is certainly far superior to Dallas for quality of life--yet close enough to see them frequently. We do however miss the water badly...have a sailboat still in St Pete and miss that lifestyle. The big debate now is whether the boat gets moved to Texas or just left in the water in St Pete, where it'll become our FL "condo" during the winter. If you have lived by the water and love it....you will miss that aspect of your life dearly!

Best of luck deciding and do come here for an extended visit in August to see what you think then...
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Mar 15th, 2006, 05:30 AM
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Travelina...we had one 93 degree day last week...with the humidity at 5%! It was gorgeous. LOL, yes I know that humidity is unusual, but the humidity here didn't bother us at all last summer (coming from Tampa, and Savannah before that). Everything is relative. We didn't even turn on our A/C until sometime mid May. For the past week plus, all our windows have been open during the day, and we've been sleeping with tehm open at night. Lovely!
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Mar 15th, 2006, 05:54 AM
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San Antonio summers HUMID?!? No way! Houston wins the prize for that! Even Dallas summers are more humid than San Antonio.

Mike, I know you love your retirement living in Mexico, but not everyone wants to live in a foreign country.

Yes, property taxes in Texas are high, as is the sales tax, but we have no state income tax, so it basically evens out. Plus, you get a lot more home for the money in Texas than in most parts of the USA.

You might also consider looking at the planned retirement communities in the central Texas area, such as Del Webb's Sun City in Georgetown.
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Mar 15th, 2006, 08:24 PM
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Malesherbes, I have not a single doubt that your abode is appointed with only the most tasteful, attracttive and well designed granite.

Isn't it about time for another Fodorito/a confab??
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Mar 16th, 2006, 02:23 PM
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Seamus...absolutely!!! Re the Fabulous Foraging Fodorites that is, any time any where!

We just had house guests and were going to take them to Josephine St but ran out of time, unfortunately. LOL...I couldn't remember the name of the bar just now, so googled "leaning bar in San Antonio" and immediately got a full page of links for Liberty Bar.
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Mar 16th, 2006, 02:35 PM
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Malesherbes, I think I just realized whO yOu are!
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Mar 16th, 2006, 02:45 PM
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You got it chica...
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Mar 16th, 2006, 02:55 PM
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Leaning Tower in Pisa, Leaning Bar in San Antonio... ;-)
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Mar 16th, 2006, 04:56 PM
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ChristieP,
You should see what you get for you retirement dolares in many great places in Mexico, lol.
No Contest!
M
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Mar 16th, 2006, 05:14 PM
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Mike,
I have zero desire to ever live in a foreign country, least of all Mexico. I love the good old USA way too much! Besides, I'm a LONG way from retirement...
Christie
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Mar 17th, 2006, 12:27 PM
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CP,
Given the rapidly escalating US trade and budget deficits and inevitable decline in the quality of life in the US, your opinion will surely change as you mature (and pay more Fed'l income tax/FICA to support us).
M
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Mar 17th, 2006, 01:44 PM
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mikemo...I don't know if you follow some of the threads here enough to "get" what I'm about to refer to, but I was reading your post and smiling, thinking....just as there is the Christ and the Anti-Christ....so too is there the xbt2316 and the Anti-xbt2316. You like your new nom de plume? LOL just kidding you....I'm sure you found some good in Dallas too, though it sometimes doesn't sound that way! <) I know we did, but I'm not anxious to return there to live despite one of the kids probably being permanent in that area.
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