a question for Albuquerque peas

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Posted 1/28/2013 by schooner3 in NSBR Board
 

schooner3
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Posted: 1/28/2013 2:53:56 PM
My son-in-law is interviewing for a job at Sandia labs. He and my DD are wondering what would be good areas to look for a place to live. They would be renting, preferably a house but would consider an apt, duplex, townhouse, etc. They are in their 20s, no children, moving from Atlanta GA. Any ideas on what would be good areas to look?

megmc
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Posted: 1/28/2013 3:16:36 PM
and the hiking. My husband is not much for hiking, and he LOVED the hiking.

schooner3
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:51:07 PM
are there any SAFE areas?

BaseballMom23
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:53:34 PM
You might want to look into Santa Fe - its roughly an hour away if your son in law doesn't mind driving.

Georgiapea
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Posted: 1/28/2013 8:02:33 PM
Sandia has 3 ABQ locations. I would wait until they are there and look at a community near his job site. We lived way down in Roswell, a 4 hour drive away and HATED going into Albuquerque. 'Drive like you stole it' is the norm there.

megmc
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Posted: 1/29/2013 12:08:13 AM
My husband said to check the West mountains. expensive but little crime. they are 35 minutes away, but if there is accident during winter time forget about getting into town. He said mid-town may not be to bad.





megmc
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Posted: 1/29/2013 12:10:04 AM
I accidently deleted this post...sorry

on the bad side:
Beware that Albuquerque is a high crime area.
The Office manager of the company my husband worked for, was beaten and rob just as she was entering their office building. They now have security to walk them to and from their cars.

My neighbor's husband is from there, and they never leave anything in their cars ever! She said even a pen on a seat was reason to break into a car.

and if they are looking at homes, have a full inspection done. some of the homes are built on disintegrating granite. We have two friends who have spent thousands trying to shore up their foundations.

on the other side:
there is great shopping and even better restaurants..



Tomboymama
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Posted: 1/29/2013 1:22:28 AM
There are good and bad areas there just like any larger city. Traffic/commute would be a consideration depending on which location he would be working at. If they plan on being there long enough that kids/school might come into play, I would definitely consider that as well. There are lots of nice areas in and around Albuquerque. This forum has lots of good information if they haven't seen it already.


~Andi
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KittenOnTheKeys
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Posted: 1/29/2013 6:57:56 AM
My first choice is the NW. My second is the NE. Look in the SW only if you must. Avoid the SE any time you can.

If they are moving from Atlanta, ABQ will be a vacation for them. Yes, there is crime, but if they stay away from Central Ave (RT 66)/downtown they will avoid most of it.

If they have to cross the river for work, they will have to have an alternate route in the event of an accident. Traffic can back up. There may be 1-3 days where weather is a problem driving. No big deal. ABQ drivers are crazy but no worst than any other big city.

If they look on the NW side, they are more likely to get a newer home. Check out air conditioning. Get a newer house with refrigerated air. They will not like swamp coolers. They don't cool.

I have no clue where these "West mountains" are that an earlier poster mentioned. We have East mountains. They are remote and a long, bad drive to anywhere you want to go. Some people love living there but you will have more, BAD traffic experiences. We have a West mesa.

If they plan on having children here and sending them to school, go to Rio Rancho. It is a little city on the NW side of ABQ. They have better schools than ABQ. I say "better" but keep in mind NM is 49th in school ratings.



guzismom
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:00:23 AM
I guess I have a different perspective, having lived most of my life in the DC metro area...but I think ABQ traffic is a picnic compared to most major cities.

I have no suggestions on where to live as I live in a different part of the state; but with the lab having three locations, I also suggest they get more info on WHICH he will be assigned before proceeding.

I love ABQ. I also love Santa Fe but wouldn't want to make that commute every day unless I took the train, which may be doable...again, depending on where his lab is.



Marilyn (now in New Mexico!!)
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KittenOnTheKeys
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:16:49 AM
The train is wonderful. When DH has to go to SF, he takes the train. It is much more affordable.

I wouldn't suggest living there though. The cost of living is MUCH higher.



KittenOnTheKeys
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:33:53 AM

are there any SAFE areas?


I thought this was a strange question until I read that city-data link. I nearly wet myself laughing.

If they are coming from Atlanta, they will have more than enough street smarts to make it anywhere in ABQ. They will probably think ABQ is boring as far a crime goes. Trust your gut. If it looks like you shouldn't be there, you shouldn't be there. Most people will only experience graffiti or a stolen car. It will probably feel very "small town". It does not have the big city feel.



schooner3
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:34:55 AM
Thank you so much for your help. I didn't know there were several locations, I'll check with my SIL to find out which one. They are looking to rent now, and would buy long before they have children in school. It really helps to know to avoid the SW. I'll show this thread to my DD.

schooner3
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:40:43 AM
Tomboymama, I'm sure they haven't seen that forum--thank you.

KittenOfTheKeys, Yes, they live in mid-town Atlanta, going to college there and living there since (although they both grew up in (different)small towns in GA). My SIL turned down a job in DC to avoid the big city life.

MergeLeft
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:41:08 AM
We have only visited Albuquerque, but coming from Houston, we never felt the least bit unsafe in any of the parts of town we visited. We spent quite a bit of time downtown in the "old town" area. The people we were staying with lived in a village area on the northwest side of town called Corrales. We absolutely loved it there. Very quiet and safe, with great restaurants and artsy stores, and suburban-type shopping nearby. It's probably expensive! I have no idea.



KittenOnTheKeys
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:48:06 AM
Corrales is expensive. It is a nice area. You do have to watch fire season there. I have trouble suggesting Corrales or the Mountains because of the evacuations. People do come together there grabbing kids and animals to get them out.



*~laura~*
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Posted: 1/29/2013 11:07:40 AM
Im from Albuquerque, I haven't lived there in many years but my family still does, so I go back often. Yes, crime is high, but what big city is it not?
Someone suggested the West side, that would be an absolute no! Unless you would be moving up to Rio Rancho/Bernalillo. If he is working at Sandia, it is on the east side of town. I would suggest they rent so that they can get a feel of where they would like to live before committing to anything. The North East would be the best place. It is at the base of the mountains, up near Tramway/Academy area. If they are interested in buying my best friend is a realator and she is really good. She will be very honest with them and work hard for them. If you would like her name and number peamail me and I will give you the info.


Laura


essiejean
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Posted: 1/29/2013 11:22:40 AM
The company I work for is based in Albuquerque but I work from my home in SD. My good friend and coworker works out of the ABQ office and she lives in Rio Rancho because of the schools. They seem to really like it there. I have stayed at her place several times. Most of the developments are gated.


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AlyPea
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Posted: 1/29/2013 11:30:28 AM
We just moved away from ABQ in July.

We lived in (and loved) the NE Heights, at the base of Sandia Mountain (and the trailhead for La Luz Trail). We felt far safer in that part of town than in any other.

Downtown is sketchy. Nob Hill is a gorgeous older area with tons of cute shopping and restaurants, but the crime is also higher the closer you get to actual downtown.

The crime is high in ABQ. We lived there four years and though we were lucky, I can name five friends off the top of my head that had their cars or homes broken into. (4/5 of them lived in the SE part of town.) Almost every older house has bars on the windows. There's a funny video they should watch that sums ABQ up better than anything I've seen. Sh*t New Mexicans DON'T say.


My husband said to check the West mountains.
Surely he meant the East Mountains. The west side is higher crime and less expensive. Be careful though, the East Mountains are very far (at least 30 minutes to ABQ) and the roads in and out shut down completely when it snows. NE Heights are a happy compromise. (See my first paragraph.)

The food is amazing. We miss that more than anything.

Tell them good luck! It's a gem of a town...a little rough around the edges, but you only get out of it what you put into it. We are thankful for our time spent there, but we're happy to be out of there, as well.


lindywholoveskids
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Posted: 1/29/2013 11:47:31 AM
I have a friend that just moved away from ABQ after renting a house for a year. They lived near the campus.

What they mentioned is that the water situation is bad. I assume they meant that there is a drought and they don't have a sustainable source for water.

We have been there a few times. Santa Fe is awesome! There is a commuter train that runs every hour from points n ABQ and back.

Restaurants are great!

CnBsmommy
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Posted: 1/29/2013 12:54:45 PM
Santa Fe would get old driving back & forth. It's also more expensive to live in than ABQ. If he's working at the labs, 4 Hills is a nice area & close to work. It's the SE part of town but still safe.

The NE Heights are popular but also more expensive than other places around town due to it's location. People who live on the west side are in for a longer commute & if there's a wreck, the freeway backs up. There aren't enough roads over the river. Mesa del Sol is also near Sandia/KAFB. It's a new development so there's not much there. It's also close to the airport.

When it snows the town shuts down. The East Mountains are popular due to their price but a person is in for a drive to commute back & forth. The freeway shuts down often when it snows & there's only a 2 lane road available to avoid the freeway. Generally, people pick the mountains or the west side due to being more affordable but end up spending their savings in fuel with their commute time.

CnBsmommy
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Posted: 1/29/2013 12:57:56 PM
If they have kids or are planning to they will want to live in the La Cueva school district. Many people from Sandia/KAFB live in the area. The schools are better than anywhere else in the metro area as a whole.

Sparki
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Posted: 1/29/2013 1:08:29 PM
I moved here from Atlanta six years ago. I'm in my 30's, no children. Really, after Atlanta, there really isn't any crime in Abq. Seriously. (and I loved Atlanta) It used to be bad in Abq, but it's not really any worse than other cities anymore. I was there yesterday. I live in Santa Fe. No way on earth would I commute from Santa Fe to Sandia. Nope. Not even on the train. Besides, Santa Fe real estate is out of site. Abq is so much more affordable. There are a ton of brand new condos near Sandia Labs that are very nice. Sandia should have some info for them moving here, since so many of their employees are imported from other cities.



megmc
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Posted: 1/29/2013 5:34:52 PM
It must be the east mountains then. Most of the people that worked at the company my husband worked at lived there.

I refused to move after the hearing the about the office manager.

schooner3
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:05:37 PM
Sparki- It was good to hear the point of view from someone of a similar age and from Atlanta also. I suggested to my SIL to ask the folks at Sandia, and he will if he does get the offer. They are kind of nervous and excited about the prospect of moving since this will be their first move and it is so far away. My SIL has mentioned the Sandia "campus" so I assume it is the main lab in the area?

Sparki
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Posted: 1/31/2013 11:54:57 AM
Yes, the Sandia 'campus' is the main Lab. It really is a gated complex. There are several Lab campuses around town, then there is also Los Alamos, which is not near Sandia, but is another National Lab. I know a lot of people at Los Alamos, but not Sandia. I hope your Son-in-law gets the job - they are very good jobs. If they do, let me know. I can give them a lot of tips on fun things to do, and places to go. I love going back to Atlanta, but I love New Mexico, and plan to stay here. I will admit that it was a little bit of a culture shock when I moved here, but I adjusted.


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