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  1. #1
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    What rental would you choose?

    Hey Foo, our family is doing a 15 month change-of-station from New Mexico to Patrick Air Force Base, Florida. Our priorities for moving are: good school district (elementary), close to work, pool and easy ocean access. We are treating this like an extended vacation and are going to try to make the most of this tropical move.

    Given that, and assume a family of 4, which of these three rentals would you choose and why?

    Option 1: Detached house, 1400 ft2, 3br, 2ba, 1 car garage. Backs up to banana river (canal). <1 mile to work. half mile to ocean. Pool. A little dated, but nothing needs repair. No screened porch. Quiet street. Lawn and pool maintenance included: $1500/month

    Option 2: Detached house, 1450 ft2, 3br, 2ba, 1 car garage. Community boat dock (canal), community pool. <1 mile to work. Half mile to ocean. Updated kitchen, maple cabinets, granite counter top. Not right on any water and across from a busy road. Screened porch. Lawn maint. included: $1300/month

    Option 3: Beachfront condo, 3rd floor, 1650 ft2, 2br, 2ba, 1 car carport. Community pool. ~ 1.0 miles to work. 50 feet to ocean. 45 foot wrap-around deck. Not fancy inside (no granite, etc). Two big living spaces, so one could have a pull-out sofa, treating like 3rd bedroom, which the kids are actually excited about. They're not quite into the "my room is my existence" phase yet. $1450/month.

    With the above in mind, let me know what you would go with. I am very torn between saving money, being right on a canal (can canoe out in minutes), or being right on ocean. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Senior Member tizeye's Avatar
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    The biggest question mark with the beachfront condo...what is the owner occupancy rate? Also as a secondary, are there 3 br units in the same condo, and their rental rate. While yours is obviously investor owned with long term rental, more lucrative is the short term rental. The problem with short term rentals is transient neighbors a week or weekend at a time who have no investment in your lifestyle...and it is party time!

    With all three, go online and check the owner's name with the Brevard County (or approppriate county if different) Clerk of Court. Look for civil cases indicating some form of foreclosure action, starting with the initial filing of Lis Pendens. It is not unusual for landlords to collect the rent and not make the mortgage payment.

  3. #3
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    A house in Florida on a canal with no screened porch. I'm thinking there would be bugs all over the place in the summer.

    The beach condo on the third floor - you run the risk of noisy neighbors below you, or super-sensitive neighbors who complain and bang on the ceiling whenever your kids run around.

    I vote for #2 unless the busy road would be an issue with your kids.
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    Senior Member bikecrate's Avatar
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    I'd go with the one on the Banana River so you can have the canoe access, pool and free maintenance. No screen, no problem. It's usually so hot you won't be outside anyways. I wouldn't do the condo. As mentioned many of them get rented out. Also, there is a stretch of beach in that area that has these annoying rock formations right under the surface of the ocean. During certain tide times it makes swimming almost impossible. I found that out during a vacation a couple of years ago. I'd check that out before you look at any condo if that is important to you.

  5. #5
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    I rode my bike about 40 miles from Port Canaveral to Sebastion Inlet Park and rode right through Patrick AFB. It was not nearly as fun as I thought it would be. :/

    Personally, I hate apartments/condos/whatever. I prefer single-family homes, buy hey, you're the one who has to live there.
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  6. #6
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    Good input, thanks! I admit I'm probably idealizing the beachfront condo - thinking cool ocean breezes with easy access to lounging on the pristine sand. It might be closer to having annoying neighbors with a crappy beach.

    More feedback is welcome ~ thanks!

  7. #7
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    I would think that Option 3 would have a higher chance of hot topless beach action. If that matters.
    Regards, MillCreek
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  8. #8
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    I would go with option two and use the savings to fund family fun activities.
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  9. #9
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MillCreek View Post
    I would think that Option 3 would have a higher chance of hot topless beach action. If that matters.
    You know that Florida has a lot of retirees, right?
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    You know that Florida has a lot of retirees, right?
    <shudder>

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    You know that Florida has a lot of retirees, right?
    Maybe the OP likes that sort of thing. And besides, you've seen one, you've seen them both.
    Regards, MillCreek
    Snohomish County, Washington USA

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    OK, right away -- skip Door #3. Hate condos; don't care how fancy they can be, they're overpriced apartments.

    UPS for #1: quiet area, big thing for me; if you don't mind traffic noise, it's a non-issue. Everything works, cool. Included maintenance can be a dealmaker. DOWNS for #1: only the lack of a screened porch; you may NOT be in/on a screened porch MUCH in FL, but you'd be there SOME.

    UPS for #2: slightly larger square footage (although 50 SF is like half the footprint of a car, big whoop), nicer kitchen, screened porch, less rent. DOWNS for #2: busy street (noisy, can be at ALL hours).

    If your family is into a lot of activities, #2 will be best, the noise would be less of an effect. Balance the noise VS $200/month, which is more important? THAT'S your answer.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Will G's Avatar
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    Having grown up in Florida and occasionally still visit, the breeze is not much more that beach deep in places. The further you are away from the beach, the more stifling the humidity is. Thus negating any advantages of a porch screened or otherwise. The condo thing does not appeal to me but you might have the place to yourself in the summer. Looks like pool vs boat access, depending on your recreational desires. Elementary school aged kids would tilt the equation towards the pool.
    Flying a jet is no different than riding a bicycle. It's just a lot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes.

  14. #14
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    I'd opt for #2 as well.

    Also, not sure about Renter's Insurance, but Homeowner's have to pay more if there are any bodies of water that are on or borders the property- and #1 has both.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member bikecrate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    You know that Florida has a lot of retirees, right?
    Ha ha, that's what I was thinking. You're more likely to see a 70 year old pasty guy with moobs.

  16. #16
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    Again, thanks for input!

    Typically I would agree with suggestors of #1 or #2. In general we like nice quiet houses where we don't have to worry about hearing or making noise. We have that here and really enjoy the peace and quiet.

    But Florida - it's only a year. I think we can tolerate being pushed outside our comfort zone a little. As mentioned, I really want to play up the tropical vacation theme. Being beachfront would help get me there.

    I did find out the condo is 95% owner occupied and they are not allowed to rent more than once a year. So it's quiet and stable, for a condo. Nearest other building is 300 yards away. Beach is good quality year-round, with no rocks.

    As of now, all 3 are available and we have appointments to see all three. Seeing the exterior and interior space of each will definitely make my decision. I just hope I can leave the rose-colored glasses at home and be objective.

  17. #17
    klondike300 klondike300's Avatar
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    I'd lean towards option # 3. As someone who has lived in Florida, the other two sound ripe for mosquitos and cockroaches. Take advantage of being by the beach and pool. Come summer (which can be damn near year round), you'll like that location. And it will rain like a mofo any time of the day. And drivers there suck. I've never seen so many accidents on flat, straight roads.

  18. #18
    RacingBear UmneyDurak's Avatar
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    Man Florida is cheap.
    I see hills.... Bring them on!!!
    Stay calm and bring a towel.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
    Man Florida is cheap.
    Yep, it's a good time to rent there. An even better time to buy. Too bad we're not in the market.

    My guess is, back in 2008 this condo probably could have fetched $2000-2500 a month, before the Florida real estate collapsed.

  20. #20
    Senior Member tizeye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
    Man Florida is cheap.
    Actually, that stretch of coastline from New Symrna south to Vero Beach is quite reasonable, both ocean front and interior. Prices have not hit the stratusphere like they have further south and over on the Gulf coast. Part of it has to do with the winding down of the Space industry from it's heyday in the 70's, never really recovered with the new downsizing starting with the shuttle shutdown/mission transition. Patrick AFB isn't really that large as Air Force Bases go.

    The biggest problem with buying there is getting insurance.

  21. #21
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Option 3 has one other consideration: Evacuation in a Hurricane. It's not long til this is a worry, too, remember. 50' isn't far from major storm surge damage, and loss of all your stuff.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


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  22. #22
    Senior Member tizeye's Avatar
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    Actually, all three options would probably be evacuation. With the others "half mile to ocean" they would be on the eastern side of the intercoastal waterway which usually entails a mandatory evacuation. Further, with extra high tides with the disrupted inlet tidal flow, the other two are likely to flood. One is on the Banana river, the other has canal access.

  23. #23
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tizeye View Post
    Actually, all three options would probably be evacuation. With the others "half mile to ocean" they would be on the eastern side of the intercoastal waterway which usually entails a mandatory evacuation. Further, with extra high tides with the disrupted inlet tidal flow, the other two are likely to flood. One is on the Banana river, the other has canal access.

    Ah, good point, there. On the beach, though, you'd have an unbuffered onshore wind fetch to contend with as well, though.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe View Post
    Ah, good point, there. On the beach, though, you'd have an unbuffered onshore wind fetch to contend with as well, though.
    Very true. The condo has full hurrican shutters/doors/etc, and we really won't be bringing too much stuff.

    I've heard we should study and have our own exacuation plans before we even get out there. Probably good advice.

  25. #25
    Found my way <3 2 Ride's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by palesaint View Post
    Hey Foo, our family is doing a 15 month change-of-station from New Mexico to Patrick Air Force Base, Florida. Our priorities for moving are: good school district (elementary), close to work, pool and easy ocean access. We are treating this like an extended vacation and are going to try to make the most of this tropical move.

    Given that, and assume a family of 4, which of these three rentals would you choose and why?

    Option 1: Detached house, 1400 ft2, 3br, 2ba, 1 car garage. Backs up to banana river (canal). <1 mile to work. half mile to ocean. Pool. A little dated, but nothing needs repair. No screened porch. Quiet street. Lawn and pool maintenance included: $1500/month

    Option 2: Detached house, 1450 ft2, 3br, 2ba, 1 car garage. Community boat dock (canal), community pool. <1 mile to work. Half mile to ocean. Updated kitchen, maple cabinets, granite counter top. Not right on any water and across from a busy road. Screened porch. Lawn maint. included: $1300/month

    Option 3: Beachfront condo, 3rd floor, 1650 ft2, 2br, 2ba, 1 car carport. Community pool. ~ 1.0 miles to work. 50 feet to ocean. 45 foot wrap-around deck. Not fancy inside (no granite, etc). Two big living spaces, so one could have a pull-out sofa, treating like 3rd bedroom, which the kids are actually excited about. They're not quite into the "my room is my existence" phase yet. $1450/month.

    With the above in mind, let me know what you would go with. I am very torn between saving money, being right on a canal (can canoe out in minutes), or being right on ocean. Thanks!
    I vote #3. All of the options sound pretty good. It's only a year and you say they have provided hurricane protection. You'll likely spend most of your free time on the beach, so why not be right there.
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