Santa Fe real estate

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SC Anteater
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Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm

Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)

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unclescrooge
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by unclescrooge » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm

What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?

littlebird
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by littlebird » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm

Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?

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mrspock
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by mrspock » Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:04 pm

You need to think bigger. You can get 57000 acres in Australia for $866k AUD: https://naiharcourts.com.au/Property/31 ... ng-Station

Anyone wanna go halfsies with me? I don’t know the first thing about running a ranch or cattle but what the hell, I can’t resist a deal on a small country sized piece of property.

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SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm

unclescrooge wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm
What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?
Garden. And not hear my neighbors.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm

littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?

adamthesmythe
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by adamthesmythe » Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:57 pm

Santa Fe is retirement and second house territory for the well-off. If your understanding is correct, sellers are in no hurry.

Pay the price or start making low offers and be prepared for rejection.

HEDGEFUNDIE
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by HEDGEFUNDIE » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:44 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Then you will be quite bored there.

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unclescrooge
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by unclescrooge » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:34 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm
What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?
Garden. And not hear my neighbors.
What's the draw to Santa Fe? Wouldn't you be equally happy in any desolate area?

Not being sarcastic. Just trying to learn more about the area. The only thing I know about about NM is that it was incredibly windy when I drove through it.

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kramer
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by kramer » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:46 am

My friend was visiting Santa Fe last month (May) and it snowed.

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snackdog
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by snackdog » Sun Jun 02, 2019 2:51 am

There is not a lot to do there. But the weather is ok.

jminv
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by jminv » Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:03 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Santa Fe is nice and there's plenty of things to do even if you're not into the arts. I don't understand the comments so far here about it being only for people that are into the arts. For example, you have the outdoors.

In terms of Santa Fe city the average days on market is 68 days. Price - average is 1.9% over list. That's the city, though, where the average sales price is 190k but you're looking outside the city. When you have homes sitting, they're just not priced attractively or there aren't many buyers in that price range. In terms of Santa Fe county, they sit for a bit longer and cost more. I doubt they sell over list. See, for exampe:
http://graphics.barker.store/2019-Q1-Market-Report.pdf

Where you run into inventory that's sat for a long time it's because it's priced too high. You're looking at more expensive homes away from the city. One type of buyer for those are the second home/retirement home people. There's a steady supply when people decide they don't fit in, pass away, or move back around family. I guess you want to find a bargain? Or are you worried about resale? If you can find something that's been on the market a long time and where people will negotiate on price, it just wasn't priced attractively to begin with so although it might feel like a bargain, it's just lowering the price to what it takes to sell. I guess it feels better than making a full price offer on an attractively priced home. In terms of resale, it's not bad that homes sell around list and that the days on market, if priced right, are 2-3 months. Hopefully that helps you justify a home purchase there.

If you want to move to Santa Fe, find a house you like an make an offer. The house you really liked was priced fairly attractively, had land, and was not all that far from the city. The interior is very similar to many of the others you would find in the area. You'll probably like New Mexico. It's a beautiful state and there is a lot to do. Taos is also quite nice if you want somewhere smaller but same general vibe. Also cheaper.

msk
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by msk » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:18 am

mrspock wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:04 pm
You need to think bigger. You can get 57000 acres in Australia for $866k AUD: https://naiharcourts.com.au/Property/31 ... ng-Station

Anyone wanna go halfsies with me? I don’t know the first thing about running a ranch or cattle but what the hell, I can’t resist a deal on a small country sized piece of property.
Tempting! Only 3.5 hours drive to Brisbane. Just the bragging rights. My garden is 57,000 acres... :mrgreen:

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:09 am

HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:44 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Then you will be quite bored there.
Hardly. There are so many outdoor activities, and a ski resort just up the hill. Exactly my cup of tea. And the weather is much more appealing to me that some of the more northern mountain towns.

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SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:10 am

unclescrooge wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:34 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm
What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?
Garden. And not hear my neighbors.
What's the draw to Santa Fe? Wouldn't you be equally happy in any desolate area?

Not being sarcastic. Just trying to learn more about the area. The only thing I know about about NM is that it was incredibly windy when I drove through it.
I don't really consider Santa Fe desolate.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:15 am

jminv wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:03 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Santa Fe is nice and there's plenty of things to do even if you're not into the arts. I don't understand the comments so far here about it being only for people that are into the arts. For example, you have the outdoors.

In terms of Santa Fe city the average days on market is 68 days. Price - average is 1.9% over list. That's the city, though, where the average sales price is 190k but you're looking outside the city. When you have homes sitting, they're just not priced attractively or there aren't many buyers in that price range. In terms of Santa Fe county, they sit for a bit longer and cost more. I doubt they sell over list. See, for exampe:
http://graphics.barker.store/2019-Q1-Market-Report.pdf

Where you run into inventory that's sat for a long time it's because it's priced too high. You're looking at more expensive homes away from the city. One type of buyer for those are the second home/retirement home people. There's a steady supply when people decide they don't fit in, pass away, or move back around family. I guess you want to find a bargain? Or are you worried about resale? If you can find something that's been on the market a long time and where people will negotiate on price, it just wasn't priced attractively to begin with so although it might feel like a bargain, it's just lowering the price to what it takes to sell. I guess it feels better than making a full price offer on an attractively priced home. In terms of resale, it's not bad that homes sell around list and that the days on market, if priced right, are 2-3 months. Hopefully that helps you justify a home purchase there.

If you want to move to Santa Fe, find a house you like an make an offer. The house you really liked was priced fairly attractively, had land, and was not all that far from the city. The interior is very similar to many of the others you would find in the area. You'll probably like New Mexico. It's a beautiful state and there is a lot to do. Taos is also quite nice if you want somewhere smaller but same general vibe. Also cheaper.

I'm trying to get a sense of the market and I'm always concerned about resale for real estate. The dynamics struck me as odd, but I'm used to bay area real estate. I'll keep watching, we're a bit aways from actually retiring.

I like taos a lot to but prices didn't seem all that much cheaper and of course smaller means less inventory. The town might be too small for me. Santa Fe send to be the ideal size.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:05 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Northern Arizona?
Cottonwood
Sedona
Prescott (elevation 5000+ vs Santa Fe at 7000+)
Scottsdale

Property values may be a bit more stable. (depending on locale.)
But, overall, there is a difference between the general economy of NM vs Arizona.

j
Wiki Bogleheads Wiki: Everything You Need to Know

snowman
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by snowman » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:20 am

Have you actually visited SF, really liked it and put it on your list, and are now just checking RE market? Or, you've never been there, but it checks out lots (or all) of your boxes, so you are exploring RE market?

BBQ Nut
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by BBQ Nut » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:23 am

Why not post your question on the city-data website in the New Mexico/Santa Fe subsection.

Probably get some better answers than the snarky ones here.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:30 am

snowman wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:20 am
Have you actually visited SF, really liked it and put it on your list, and are now just checking RE market? Or, you've never been there, but it checks out lots (or all) of your boxes, so you are exploring RE market?
Yes, I have visited. I did tick all my boxes, except possibly cost.

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SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:34 am

Sandtrap wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:05 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Northern Arizona?
Cottonwood
Sedona
Prescott (elevation 5000+ vs Santa Fe at 7000+)
Scottsdale

Property values may be a bit more stable. (depending on locale.)
But, overall, there is a difference between the general economy of NM vs Arizona.

j
Spent many many summers in the Flag/Sedona/Prescott area. Sedona too small (and kooky), Flag too snowy, Prescott too far away from skiing. Other reasons I dislike Arizona that I won't go in to here. Plus New Mexico food is freakin' amazing.

Hell to the no to Scottsdale.

littlebird
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by littlebird » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:35 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Having lived nearby for several years, admittedly not recently, my strong impression was that for those not deeply involved in the arts, the culture of Santa Fe is a mile wide and a millimeter deep.

HEDGEFUNDIE
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by HEDGEFUNDIE » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:36 am

littlebird wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:35 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Having lived nearby for several years, admittedly not recently, my strong impression was that for those not deeply involved in the arts, the culture of Santa Fe is a mile wide and a millimeter deep.
Exactly

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:37 am

HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:36 am
littlebird wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:35 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Having lived nearby for several years, admittedly not recently, my strong impression was that for those not deeply involved in the arts, the culture of Santa Fe is a mile wide and a millimeter deep.
Exactly
I'm not sure I understand. What culture do you think is lacking? Or are the residents lacking somehow?

I'm primarily interested in outdoor pursuits and it seems perfect for that.

Pinotage
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Pinotage » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:47 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:37 am
I'm primarily interested in outdoor pursuits and it seems perfect for that.
As a recent several-time visitor to the area, agree with the above.

Really enjoyed the climate.

littlebird
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by littlebird » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:48 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:34 am
Sandtrap wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:05 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Northern Arizona?
Cottonwood
Sedona
Prescott (elevation 5000+ vs Santa Fe at 7000+)
Scottsdale

Property values may be a bit more stable. (depending on locale.)
But, overall, there is a difference between the general economy of NM vs Arizona.

j
Spent many many summers in the Flag/Sedona/Prescott area. Sedona too small (and kooky), Flag too snowy, Prescott too far away from skiing. Other reasons I dislike Arizona that I won't go in to here. Plus New Mexico food is freakin' amazing.

Hell to the no to Scottsdale.
The New Mexico food that you have been exposed to was developed by and for tourists. I suppose if you have the wherewithal, you could continue to eat in tourist places. It has little to do with the way actual New Mexicans eat, and the type of places they can actually afford to patronize.

Keep in mind that the wealthy who dominate Santa Fe can afford to, and do, fly away to California or Texas when their needs cannot be met in NM. If you can’t afford to do the same, consider carefully. I would strongly recommend renting for a full year before committing to NM.

btenny
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by btenny » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:49 am

SC I am confused. You say Flagstaff is too snowy and Prescott (that also gets snow) is too far from skiing. Do you want to ski a lot or have a warm winter place? Tahoe and Salt Lake have good skiing and nice summer but snowy winters.

Please advise.

HEDGEFUNDIE
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by HEDGEFUNDIE » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:49 am

SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:37 am
HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:36 am
littlebird wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:35 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
littlebird wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Are you an artist or a patron of the arts?
No, why?
Having lived nearby for several years, admittedly not recently, my strong impression was that for those not deeply involved in the arts, the culture of Santa Fe is a mile wide and a millimeter deep.
Exactly
I'm not sure I understand. What culture do you think is lacking? Or are the residents lacking somehow?

I'm primarily interested in outdoor pursuits and it seems perfect for that.
Certain cities are associated with certain industries / pursuits. E.g. the Bay Area with tech, Manhattan with finance, DC with government. If you are not involved in those industries it can be difficult to fit in with the locals.

The effect is compounded in Santa Fe given how small the town is.

Sure if you are a loner and all you want to do is go out into the wilderness this may not affect you.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:53 am

littlebird wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:48 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:34 am
Sandtrap wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:05 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Northern Arizona?
Cottonwood
Sedona
Prescott (elevation 5000+ vs Santa Fe at 7000+)
Scottsdale

Property values may be a bit more stable. (depending on locale.)
But, overall, there is a difference between the general economy of NM vs Arizona.

j
Spent many many summers in the Flag/Sedona/Prescott area. Sedona too small (and kooky), Flag too snowy, Prescott too far away from skiing. Other reasons I dislike Arizona that I won't go in to here. Plus New Mexico food is freakin' amazing.

Hell to the no to Scottsdale.
The New Mexico food that you have been exposed to was developed by and for tourists. I suppose if you have the wherewithal, you could continue to eat in tourist places. It has little to do with the way actual New Mexicans eat, and the type of places they can actually afford to patronize.

Keep in mind that the wealthy who dominate Santa Fe can afford to, and do, fly away to California or Texas when their needs cannot be met in NM. If you can’t afford to do the same, consider carefully. I would strongly recommend renting for a full year before committing to NM.
I didn't eat in just Santa Fe.

Ate at a little diner in Cuba that was my favorite place on the entire trip. I'm not sure how many tourists they serve. Are you saying adovada isn't something 'real' New Mexicans don't eat?

Topic Author
SC Anteater
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:54 am

HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:49 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:37 am
HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:36 am
littlebird wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:35 am
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm


No, why?
Having lived nearby for several years, admittedly not recently, my strong impression was that for those not deeply involved in the arts, the culture of Santa Fe is a mile wide and a millimeter deep.
Exactly
I'm not sure I understand. What culture do you think is lacking? Or are the residents lacking somehow?

I'm primarily interested in outdoor pursuits and it seems perfect for that.
Certain cities are associated with certain industries / pursuits. E.g. the Bay Area with tech, Manhattan with finance, DC with government. If you are not involved in those industries it can be difficult to fit in with the locals.

The effect is compounded in Santa Fe given how small the town is.

Sure if you are a loner and all you want to do is go out into the wilderness this may not affect you.
Gotcha. Now I understand.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:58 am

btenny wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:49 am
SC I am confused. You say Flagstaff is too snowy and Prescott (that also gets snow) is too far from skiing. Do you want to ski a lot or have a warm winter place? Tahoe and Salt Lake have good skiing and nice summer but snowy winters.

Please advise.
Ideally i'd like to live within a reasonable driving distance of a ski resort without living at the resort. So no, I probably wouldn't want to retire to Truckee/Tahoe, but I'd consider Auburn because I could then drive up for the day easier than I could from here in the bay.

Flag gets 100" of snowfall a year on average. I don't want to shovel snow.

SLC has air quality issues that as an asthmatic I am leery of.

snowman
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by snowman » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:47 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:30 am
snowman wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:20 am
Have you actually visited SF, really liked it and put it on your list, and are now just checking RE market? Or, you've never been there, but it checks out lots (or all) of your boxes, so you are exploring RE market?
Yes, I have visited. I did tick all my boxes, except possibly cost.
Thanks. I only asked because it was on our list as well until we actually visited the place. It went off immediately, it would not be a good fit for us.

My relative, having similar desires - outdoorsy, short drive to ski but not live in the resort town - eliminated Santa Fe first, Flagstaff second, and SLC third. Moved to Bozeman, MT.

I think you not wanting to shovel snow severely limits your options, but if you actually like SF, you should be happy there. I would rent for a year first, just to be sure, before making RE commitment.

Dave55
Posts: 456
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Location: Colorado

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Dave55 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 1:25 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
A friend of mine lives in this area in Lamy, about 15 minutes to Santa Fe. Houses have 2-5 acre lots here. Go on Zillow and look around if you don't mind being out a bit. It is a peaceful, quiet and lovely area.

https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sale/h ... _zm/0_mmm/

Dave

Pu239
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Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Pu239 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 2:57 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm
What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?
Garden. And not hear my neighbors.
You won't see too many lush gardens or yards in Santa Fe. Water costs a fortune.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:46 pm

Pu239 wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 2:57 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:30 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:14 pm
What are you going to do on 2.5 acres?
Garden. And not hear my neighbors.
You won't see too many lush gardens or yards in Santa Fe. Water costs a fortune.
Well aware. I'm a big proponent of native plant gardening, and the High Country Gardens catalog is basically my dream garden. I can have a very nice garden with minimal water.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 4:19 pm

snowman wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:47 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:30 am
snowman wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:20 am
Have you actually visited SF, really liked it and put it on your list, and are now just checking RE market? Or, you've never been there, but it checks out lots (or all) of your boxes, so you are exploring RE market?
Yes, I have visited. I did tick all my boxes, except possibly cost.
Thanks. I only asked because it was on our list as well until we actually visited the place. It went off immediately, it would not be a good fit for us.

My relative, having similar desires - outdoorsy, short drive to ski but not live in the resort town - eliminated Santa Fe first, Flagstaff second, and SLC third. Moved to Bozeman, MT.

I think you not wanting to shovel snow severely limits your options, but if you actually like SF, you should be happy there. I would rent for a year first, just to be sure, before making RE commitment.
Somewhere in the PNW is our other option -- Spokane, Couer d'Alene. Bozeman seems more remote to me than Santa Fe. At least in Santa Fe you have Albuquerque a short drive down the road, and a Southwest flight that can take you anywhere.

wilked
Posts: 1481
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by wilked » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:14 pm

I lived in ABQ for many years. Loved Santa Fe, would def retire there! And I agree, New Mexican good is the best food in the States, hands down.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:18 pm

wilked wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:14 pm
I lived in ABQ for many years. Loved Santa Fe, would def retire there! And I agree, New Mexican good is the best food in the States, hands down.
It was truly amazing. Didn't have a bad meal my entire trip.

Murgatroyd
Posts: 241
Joined: Sun Jan 21, 2018 8:23 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Murgatroyd » Mon Jun 03, 2019 9:34 am

Have you talked to a local realtor? Get the real story. As executor of my mother’s estate, I sold her house in Taos a couple years ago. While not SF, it had that same effect of long term listings. But houses were selling even though we were told the market was soft.

IMO, SF is a wonderful place to retire. Good luck.

Valuethinker
Posts: 38180
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:18 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Re the thread above.

I have definitely heard of respiratory problems with living in SF. Someone called it "dinosaur dust". Being at altitude might compound that. It would be worth researching - perhaps there are online groups for those so afflicted, discussing living in various places? Also consumer associations?

Contrast to Phoenix, say, where the problem seems to be the pollen from all the imported plants, irrigated and in gardens. It was a great place for those with allergy or asthma issues, and now it's a terrible one. Also increasing air quality issues?

It is definitely a city to live in for a year, renting. That will give you a fix on whether you like: 1). the climate 2). the local culture and people 3). where in the city to live. One also has to investigate healthcare quality etc. The things that you might love about a place, and the things that might drive you nuts about it, are seldom obvious or known until you actually live there.

You are then in a position to strike quickly to buy the right house, at the right price, when it becomes available. But I'd try to live out the 12 month cycle-- see the city at all phases of the year. You might even try keeping a journal about what the weather was, how you felt about it, etc. each day.

Desert living has other issues, which perhaps you have already encountered. The summer heat, of course. Poisonous snakes. Wild animals taking down domestic pets etc. Water use restrictions. There are places where, I believe, drought is risking making them uninhabitable - ie they have reached the peaks of sustainable population. You have more water extraction rights for the Colorado River granted than the river has flow, you have mass depletion of groundwater resources ... it's not, overall, a pretty picture for the American southwest. Even as cities like Las Vegas in particular have become quite efficient users of water, they are still struggling to accommodate new growth.

It is, for the American southwest, an expensive city I believe, being much more attractive than AQ.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:31 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:18 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Re the thread above.

I have definitely heard of respiratory problems with living in SF. Someone called it "dinosaur dust". Being at altitude might compound that. It would be worth researching - perhaps there are online groups for those so afflicted, discussing living in various places? Also consumer associations?

Contrast to Phoenix, say, where the problem seems to be the pollen from all the imported plants, irrigated and in gardens. It was a great place for those with allergy or asthma issues, and now it's a terrible one. Also increasing air quality issues?

It is definitely a city to live in for a year, renting. That will give you a fix on whether you like: 1). the climate 2). the local culture and people 3). where in the city to live. One also has to investigate healthcare quality etc. The things that you might love about a place, and the things that might drive you nuts about it, are seldom obvious or known until you actually live there.

You are then in a position to strike quickly to buy the right house, at the right price, when it becomes available. But I'd try to live out the 12 month cycle-- see the city at all phases of the year. You might even try keeping a journal about what the weather was, how you felt about it, etc. each day.

Desert living has other issues, which perhaps you have already encountered. The summer heat, of course. Poisonous snakes. Wild animals taking down domestic pets etc. Water use restrictions. There are places where, I believe, drought is risking making them uninhabitable - ie they have reached the peaks of sustainable population. You have more water extraction rights for the Colorado River granted than the river has flow, you have mass depletion of groundwater resources ... it's not, overall, a pretty picture for the American southwest. Even as cities like Las Vegas in particular have become quite efficient users of water, they are still struggling to accommodate new growth.

It is, for the American southwest, an expensive city I believe, being much more attractive than AQ.
Agree with all this. As far as asthma issues I was in NM for 5 days and didn't have any problems. Possibly too short to tell but I've been other places where my breathing takes a downturn fairly quickly. Generally I do best in mountain climates and I consider the SF environment to be closer to mountainous than a pure desert like PHX given it's elevation and the plants that grow there.

I'm cool with snakes and wild animals. Heat doesn't seem to bad, again due to the elevation -- average high of 86 in July, average low of 55 then. As long as it cools off at night I'm good. Water issues do concern me, not that I'm planning to use all that much. Santa Fe isn't part of the Colorado River system, by the way -- it's on the eastern side of the Continental Divide. Doesn't mean the Rio Grande won't be impacted too, but at least there's not quite as many demands on its water as there is on the Colorado at that point in its course.

Oakwood42
Posts: 167
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:48 pm
Location: Philadelphia

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Oakwood42 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:33 pm

mrspock wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:04 pm
You need to think bigger. You can get 57000 acres in Australia for $866k AUD: https://naiharcourts.com.au/Property/31 ... ng-Station

Anyone wanna go halfsies with me? I don’t know the first thing about running a ranch or cattle but what the hell, I can’t resist a deal on a small country sized piece of property.
"I don’t know the first thing about running a ranch or cattle but what the hell, I can’t resist a deal on a small country sized piece of property."

LOL

Quirkz
Posts: 148
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2019 5:32 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Quirkz » Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:21 pm

I'm not a local but have visited a few times and live somewhat "close" by Southwest standards. It's been a great place to visit - good food, lots to look at, and you're right that the potential for outdoor activity is pretty good. It does get hot in summer. That average high of 86 is going to hide a lot of days that push 100 mid-summer. That said, with the dry heat it's usually not too bad as long as you can find shade, and cooling off at night does make a big difference.

Like the others have said, between the arts crowd and general tourism, it's moderately expensive, and there's a fair bit of second/winter homes in the mix.

I'll also add my voice to the "rent for a bit" suggestion. It's always good to get to know the area well first so that you can pick the perfect spot.

Also, if you do relocate out there, given your interests I highly recommend a trip up to Durango, Colorado and the neighborhood. It sounds like the winters may not be your thing, but it's a great place to visit for all kinds of outdoorsy things.

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:45 pm

Quirkz wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:21 pm
I'm not a local but have visited a few times and live somewhat "close" by Southwest standards. It's been a great place to visit - good food, lots to look at, and you're right that the potential for outdoor activity is pretty good. It does get hot in summer. That average high of 86 is going to hide a lot of days that push 100 mid-summer. That said, with the dry heat it's usually not too bad as long as you can find shade, and cooling off at night does make a big difference.

Like the others have said, between the arts crowd and general tourism, it's moderately expensive, and there's a fair bit of second/winter homes in the mix.

I'll also add my voice to the "rent for a bit" suggestion. It's always good to get to know the area well first so that you can pick the perfect spot.

Also, if you do relocate out there, given your interests I highly recommend a trip up to Durango, Colorado and the neighborhood. It sounds like the winters may not be your thing, but it's a great place to visit for all kinds of outdoorsy things.
Oh yes, love Durango. Have to take my spouse to Mesa Verde to complement the trip to Chaco we took this year.

Where I live now can get up to high 90s semi-regularly and 100s occasionally in the summer and we don't have A/C because it usually cools off enough at night to manage (I always say there's 2 weeks every year where I wish I had A/C). I think I'd be fine with Santa Fe's summers.

Valuethinker
Posts: 38180
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Jun 03, 2019 3:55 pm

SC Anteater wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:31 pm
Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:18 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Re the thread above.

I have definitely heard of respiratory problems with living in SF. Someone called it "dinosaur dust". Being at altitude might compound that. It would be worth researching - perhaps there are online groups for those so afflicted, discussing living in various places? Also consumer associations?

Contrast to Phoenix, say, where the problem seems to be the pollen from all the imported plants, irrigated and in gardens. It was a great place for those with allergy or asthma issues, and now it's a terrible one. Also increasing air quality issues?

It is definitely a city to live in for a year, renting. That will give you a fix on whether you like: 1). the climate 2). the local culture and people 3). where in the city to live. One also has to investigate healthcare quality etc. The things that you might love about a place, and the things that might drive you nuts about it, are seldom obvious or known until you actually live there.

You are then in a position to strike quickly to buy the right house, at the right price, when it becomes available. But I'd try to live out the 12 month cycle-- see the city at all phases of the year. You might even try keeping a journal about what the weather was, how you felt about it, etc. each day.

Desert living has other issues, which perhaps you have already encountered. The summer heat, of course. Poisonous snakes. Wild animals taking down domestic pets etc. Water use restrictions. There are places where, I believe, drought is risking making them uninhabitable - ie they have reached the peaks of sustainable population. You have more water extraction rights for the Colorado River granted than the river has flow, you have mass depletion of groundwater resources ... it's not, overall, a pretty picture for the American southwest. Even as cities like Las Vegas in particular have become quite efficient users of water, they are still struggling to accommodate new growth.

It is, for the American southwest, an expensive city I believe, being much more attractive than AQ.
Agree with all this. As far as asthma issues I was in NM for 5 days and didn't have any problems. Possibly too short to tell but I've been other places where my breathing takes a downturn fairly quickly. Generally I do best in mountain climates and I consider the SF environment to be closer to mountainous than a pure desert like PHX given it's elevation and the plants that grow there.

I'm cool with snakes and wild animals. Heat doesn't seem to bad, again due to the elevation -- average high of 86 in July, average low of 55 then. As long as it cools off at night I'm good. Water issues do concern me, not that I'm planning to use all that much. Santa Fe isn't part of the Colorado River system, by the way -- it's on the eastern side of the Continental Divide. Doesn't mean the Rio Grande won't be impacted too, but at least there's not quite as many demands on its water as there is on the Colorado at that point in its course.
Mea culpa on river basin. I should have checked.

I can only reason by analogy on this one.

The worst thing about Seattle is said to he "the Seattle stare". Meaning a way of looking through people of not engaging with them of just mumbling a reply.

I've always thought of Seattle as an Americsn Vancouver. A city I love very much. Vancouver has extremely friendly people and a high quality of life other than housing costs. Biggest problem is that people seem almost too nice.

But this Seattle thing is apparently quite real. For whatever reason the city attracts a high proportion of introverts and the less socially engaged and it translates to the culture.

I am sure I would never have noticed had I just visited. Heck I might not notice if I lived there. London is also a city where people look to themselves. I have lived in big emotionally cold cities all my life.

But it's something that someone might find really objectionable re living in Seattle. Worse than the rain.

And you'd only find our by living there.

BBQ Nut
Posts: 124
Joined: Sun Jun 22, 2014 9:19 am

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by BBQ Nut » Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:12 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:18 pm
The summer heat, of course. Poisonous snakes. Wild animals taking down domestic pets etc. Water use restrictions....
You just described San Diego inland areas (about 30 minutes from the coast). :oops:

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:30 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 3:55 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:31 pm
Valuethinker wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:18 pm
SC Anteater wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 2:58 pm
Any NM locals here? Santa Fe is on our list for possible retirement destinations. Looking at real estate there, it seems like theres a ton of inventory and a ton of house sitting on the market for long periods of time with no price reductions, and prices are really high. What gives? Does nobody really care if their house sells or not?

(Of course, the one house I really really liked went pending within days https://www.redfin.com/NM/Santa-Fe/14-V ... /114069461)
Re the thread above.

I have definitely heard of respiratory problems with living in SF. Someone called it "dinosaur dust". Being at altitude might compound that. It would be worth researching - perhaps there are online groups for those so afflicted, discussing living in various places? Also consumer associations?

Contrast to Phoenix, say, where the problem seems to be the pollen from all the imported plants, irrigated and in gardens. It was a great place for those with allergy or asthma issues, and now it's a terrible one. Also increasing air quality issues?

It is definitely a city to live in for a year, renting. That will give you a fix on whether you like: 1). the climate 2). the local culture and people 3). where in the city to live. One also has to investigate healthcare quality etc. The things that you might love about a place, and the things that might drive you nuts about it, are seldom obvious or known until you actually live there.

You are then in a position to strike quickly to buy the right house, at the right price, when it becomes available. But I'd try to live out the 12 month cycle-- see the city at all phases of the year. You might even try keeping a journal about what the weather was, how you felt about it, etc. each day.

Desert living has other issues, which perhaps you have already encountered. The summer heat, of course. Poisonous snakes. Wild animals taking down domestic pets etc. Water use restrictions. There are places where, I believe, drought is risking making them uninhabitable - ie they have reached the peaks of sustainable population. You have more water extraction rights for the Colorado River granted than the river has flow, you have mass depletion of groundwater resources ... it's not, overall, a pretty picture for the American southwest. Even as cities like Las Vegas in particular have become quite efficient users of water, they are still struggling to accommodate new growth.

It is, for the American southwest, an expensive city I believe, being much more attractive than AQ.
Agree with all this. As far as asthma issues I was in NM for 5 days and didn't have any problems. Possibly too short to tell but I've been other places where my breathing takes a downturn fairly quickly. Generally I do best in mountain climates and I consider the SF environment to be closer to mountainous than a pure desert like PHX given it's elevation and the plants that grow there.

I'm cool with snakes and wild animals. Heat doesn't seem to bad, again due to the elevation -- average high of 86 in July, average low of 55 then. As long as it cools off at night I'm good. Water issues do concern me, not that I'm planning to use all that much. Santa Fe isn't part of the Colorado River system, by the way -- it's on the eastern side of the Continental Divide. Doesn't mean the Rio Grande won't be impacted too, but at least there's not quite as many demands on its water as there is on the Colorado at that point in its course.
Mea culpa on river basin. I should have checked.

I can only reason by analogy on this one.

The worst thing about Seattle is said to he "the Seattle stare". Meaning a way of looking through people of not engaging with them of just mumbling a reply.

I've always thought of Seattle as an Americsn Vancouver. A city I love very much. Vancouver has extremely friendly people and a high quality of life other than housing costs. Biggest problem is that people seem almost too nice.

But this Seattle thing is apparently quite real. For whatever reason the city attracts a high proportion of introverts and the less socially engaged and it translates to the culture.

I am sure I would never have noticed had I just visited. Heck I might not notice if I lived there. London is also a city where people look to themselves. I have lived in big emotionally cold cities all my life.

But it's something that someone might find really objectionable re living in Seattle. Worse than the rain.

And you'd only find our by living there.
Seattle -- it's the rain man. Everyone's just dancing on the edge of depression. (joking, sort of. I do see what you mean just from my visits to Seattle). I think the Bay Area has a bit of that tool. I sort of attribute it to stress. Commute stress, tech job stress, etc.

Granted, we were only in NM for a few days, but in that time, a guy recommended a particular beer to us in a bar (customer, not bartender), a guy finishing up his ride up to Santa Fe ski resort stopped to chat with us by our car when we were finishing a hike, on another hike another guy stopped to chat, etc. I found the people I interacted with to be more willing to randomly talk to a stranger than I see here in the Bay. I liked that.

J295
Posts: 2054
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:40 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by J295 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:47 pm

My retired architect friend built a home in SF and he and his wife love SF. We've visited. Beautiful.

Yes, SF has it's own vibe just like many areas have their own personality. It isn't for everyone of course, but is wonderful for many.

OP ... if at some point you want to look into connecting with him let me know via PM (he still takes on some interesting renovation projects for close friends; and perhaps if you landed on something he might be open to an engagement to assist -- his vision on real estate is extraordinary).

And finally, OP, if you want the Unofficial "SF Guide" that one of our daughter's friends put together based on their family's time there (they had a second home there) PM me and I can send that to you. Mostly things like where to eat, churches to visit, spas, etc., but lots of good detail that we used when we took a family trip there last month.

GingerandPiper
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2019 12:06 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by GingerandPiper » Mon Jun 03, 2019 5:14 pm

I am a SF local. I know many people who live in the area you're looking at. They happen to live at Las Campanas but my husband and I also rented a home in La Tierra. I play pickleball with a realtor who is familiar with 'higher end" homes and lives in that area.

As for living full time in SF, it took me the second year before I really felt at home - like knew the short cuts - where to go for this and that - found friends - and generally felt at home. People love its "smallness" - easy to get anywhere, neighborhood ski area (really good this year!) the incredible hiking available and of course the cuisine. While I love art, I don't "gallery hop" but appreciate art popping up in odd places - like I was at an intersection and there was a bronze horse tucked behind a tree. Charming.

This year I played in the Senior Olympics at Chavez Rec center and played with people who've lived in SF for generations. I also belong to the Santa Fe Tennis and Swim Club on Museum Hill. One of the most beautiful tennis clubs I've seen. I also play bridge at the Leonard Helman Bridge Center - an amazing facility for a town of this size. It's close to Marty Sanchez links that is the local "neighborhood" golf course. There's also Hipico - a world class center for equestrians.

Santa Fe is close to ABQ and only a 6 hour drive to Denver. I find I like to get out every few months and go to the "big city" for shopping primarily.

The only reason I've heard people leaving (other than wanting to be close to family) is because of health care - specialists primarily. They aren't compensated as well (I've been told) as other markets and after a while they leave. However, one hospital has just been designated as associated with the Mayo Clinic which is good.

Education: Public schools not the best, although private schools are terrific. But most residents I meet are highly educated. Many have migrated down from LANL.

Entertainment - lots of live entertainment and then of course, there's Meow Wolf but that's a yearly kind of thing. Good movie theaters and live theater. Also the world famous SF Opera - and you don't even have to like opera to appreciate what's out there. They've actually branched out and now in late August there's some concerts by popular entertainers.

Oh! Google Santa Fe Reporter. It's a local weekly paper that has tons of info.

Hope this helps. PM me if you have more questions.

Good luck!

Ginger

Topic Author
SC Anteater
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2019 6:50 pm

Re: Santa Fe real estate

Post by SC Anteater » Mon Jun 03, 2019 5:46 pm

GingerandPiper wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 5:14 pm
I am a SF local. I know many people who live in the area you're looking at. They happen to live at Las Campanas but my husband and I also rented a home in La Tierra. I play pickleball with a realtor who is familiar with 'higher end" homes and lives in that area.

As for living full time in SF, it took me the second year before I really felt at home - like knew the short cuts - where to go for this and that - found friends - and generally felt at home. People love its "smallness" - easy to get anywhere, neighborhood ski area (really good this year!) the incredible hiking available and of course the cuisine. While I love art, I don't "gallery hop" but appreciate art popping up in odd places - like I was at an intersection and there was a bronze horse tucked behind a tree. Charming.

This year I played in the Senior Olympics at Chavez Rec center and played with people who've lived in SF for generations. I also belong to the Santa Fe Tennis and Swim Club on Museum Hill. One of the most beautiful tennis clubs I've seen. I also play bridge at the Leonard Helman Bridge Center - an amazing facility for a town of this size. It's close to Marty Sanchez links that is the local "neighborhood" golf course. There's also Hipico - a world class center for equestrians.

Santa Fe is close to ABQ and only a 6 hour drive to Denver. I find I like to get out every few months and go to the "big city" for shopping primarily.

The only reason I've heard people leaving (other than wanting to be close to family) is because of health care - specialists primarily. They aren't compensated as well (I've been told) as other markets and after a while they leave. However, one hospital has just been designated as associated with the Mayo Clinic which is good.

Education: Public schools not the best, although private schools are terrific. But most residents I meet are highly educated. Many have migrated down from LANL.

Entertainment - lots of live entertainment and then of course, there's Meow Wolf but that's a yearly kind of thing. Good movie theaters and live theater. Also the world famous SF Opera - and you don't even have to like opera to appreciate what's out there. They've actually branched out and now in late August there's some concerts by popular entertainers.

Oh! Google Santa Fe Reporter. It's a local weekly paper that has tons of info.

Hope this helps. PM me if you have more questions.

Good luck!

Ginger
Thanks so much -- this is super helpful! I never knew Denver was so close. Right now we make the 5.5 hour drive to L.A. at least 6/7 times a year, and it isn't awful. Good to know we've got that option.

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