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Everything posted by sowanome

  1. I just moved from Chicago (home to several great n.hoods) to Dallas and it took me a while to figure out what I miss about Chicago...It's the n.hoods, and by n.hoods I'm also speaking about a sense of Community and pride, as when you're in certain areas you get a certain vibe. Not just a feeling of "Okay this is nice and this is the name of the n.hood, but it looks just like the other n.hood in a continuous suburb"..Hence Dallas. I love how new, small and clean Dallas is, but its n.hoods lack a certain edge and personality. (And yes I've been to Oak Cliff, Lakewood/"M" Streets and Deep Ellum....not really impressed w/any sense of community or character) With that being said I have to say the noticeable thing that I miss about Houston is that it actually has a unique set of special Neighborhoods!!! Seriously, sometimes you don't notice certain things until you don't have them anymore. Houston is lucky to have The Heights, Rice Military/Wash Ave., Montrose/W.Gray, West U.,Midtown, Upper Kirby, East end. These places all have some type of personality, loyalty and Character. People can actually have loyalty to an area that isn't a River Oaks/Bellaire/Memorial, etc and that's the same reason I believe people are loyal to HAIF ...That's Houston to me, not the best place to visit if you don't know anyone, but a great place to live. Ha, I live in Uptown and actually like the density, but can't wait to move away because there's a huge lack of residential "non-apartment" places in the area (maybe 80% apartment complexes). The other thing I noticed about Dallas is the amount of people wearing COWBOY BOOTS...This is really TEXAS! Houston reminds me of Chuck Taylors and Polo shirts.
  2. Bear in mind that you are correct that these are not savings. However, I'm illustrating that cable, insurance, utilities are typical payments that most people make on a monthly and yearly basis. You may be able to drop cable, insurance and utilities if needed for months at a time, but in that case without lights and water you might as well be homeless, Niche . Just wanted to illustrate that HOA fees are not just another useless fee paid to the building.
  3. I've owned a high rise condo before and don't worry "Too Much" about the $300-400 HOA fee's. Many forget that owning a single family home also carries maint. costs as well along with increasing property taxes. I often think that owning a single family place can be a lot more challenging and a lot more to go wrong than a condo. The most important thing about HOA fee's is what's included in those fees!!! I.E. there are some buildings that include a sizable gym(no gym membership..saves $40-70/m), maybe a pool(saves $25-40/m), doorman, common space, cable(saves $75/m), some utilities and insurance. This may sometimes add up to $150-$200/m and your HOA usually included building insurance, so you're only required to cover what's in your unit (between your walls), which is generally a form of renters insurance at $350/year.(saving $600-700/year or $50-60/m). Do the math here and realize that you may pay $300/month in HOA, but you're only really losing out $100/m in the worst case/non amenity building. This has just been my experience and I hope that it helps...I've had great experiences in condos and have realized that you're either a condo person or not. Good Luck
  4. +1 on D.Green and If there's a grocery store coming into the downtown area that's huge and if it's near D.Green that's even better. However, If you had the time to wait I would plan for Regent Square (Dallas between Kirby and Waugh). If R. Square ever breaks ground, it will be huge for Houston because of what's currently in the area (royalton, whole foods coming soon, W. Gray, etc.) and that it will be a walkable area. My love for a "Potential" Regent Square along w/hood's like The Heights, Rice Miltary, Montrose, West U. and everything west of Downtown that's inside of the loop is exactly what HURTS a Central Busin. District like DOWNTOWN Houston...Just my 2 cents.
  5. Yeah, 20th st. u did great... 13 of 16 is out of this world. I did the stats vs. the spread a week ago and the spread was only correct 54% of the time. So, your 80% is incredible! I've been all about the risk lately b/c of that 54% stat. It's maybe up to 60%, but I'm going to keep taking the risk in hopes that I will have a 13 of 16 day like 20th had.
  6. Losing to a team that allowed Utah to put up 68 pts?? Pretty funny, but Utah is really good and will knock off TCU. I got blasted yesterday b/c I took some big risks and the ONLY reason I choose TX was b/c of how Utah and OU crushed Iowa State. Texas could potentially win only 1 of it's next 5, but will be the underdog in some of those games...lol.
  7. I'm sure you hit 70-80%...maybe 12-14pts. This should be an interesting day, the picks are somewhat all over the place!
  8. Ha, I agree. In visiting Dallas I noticed that Chicago is definitely a lot more humid than Dallas, but it's still not as humid/uncomfortable as Houston. Although a some July days when it's warm can resemble Houston in May or June. I wasn't in Chicago most of this summer, but I noticed that most days it was much warmer (heat waves??) and the opposite of the cold attempt of a summer that we had last year in 2009. Maybe you should make a poll on CAIF about weather preference per month starting in MAY? April is still rather cold to me and I've seen many snowy Easters..lol
  9. Wow, I'm on board and will start posting....I love Chicago, but for only 4months (Mid June-Mid October) of the year like everyone else here. Too bad I'm moving to Dallas soon....@ least I won't have anymore gray/gloomy days, but will miss R. North and Museum Park area's, Great views and THE BEST REAL ESTATE (uhhmmm except for maybe ole' gold coast).
  10. This is definitely a tough week...Only 15pts available!!
  11. Wow, I'm getting worked today/tonight! I'd be lucky get 6-7 pts......I'm now Looking forward to next week.
  12. I like what I do, but the mornings come too fast and the weekends go by even faster...My vote was for #2. I'm in Sales and it can be good @ times but can also be a DRAG @other times. Overall, I like it and If I could be anything else, I think I would've gone with being a successful Architect.
  13. With this quote, I meant that LSU and Alabama (and now maybe Arkansas?) were the only teams in the SEC that stand a chance against other top teams from OUTside of the SEC. However, there's no way that I can see LSU as a ntl. contender. Anyway, At this early point in the season I'd predict 2 of the following teams to play for the title : Ohio State (Michigan's QB and Iowa are the only teams in the BIG 10 that can beat them) Boise St. (IF they win tonight) Alabama (IF they beat LSU and Arkansas) Oregon (IF they beat Stanford) Nebraska or Oklahoma ANY Thoughts? Hopefully this will be a good day for me! 13pts or more! Please let Michigan and Ohio State rest their starters in the 4th qtr??!!!
  14. The SEC looks VERY avg. this year, they may have 1 -2 natl. competitive teams (LSU and Alabama) this year and I'm the idiot that picked a Freshman QB(Georgia) over Arkansas today. I also thought Ohio state wouldn't score this much at half 30 pts?? I'm screwed today!! Anyone else?? College Football will be very erratic this year, looks like all of the really good/older players took their talents to the NFL !! I guess that's why it's college.
  15. I'm in as well....too much research to win, maybe i should harass some collegiate athletes to give me better pics. A lot of teams don't stand a chance to stay in the AP top 10 for more than 6-7 wks...Maybe 20-30%max!
  16. He's pretty much the best, why mot pay him? People leave jobs everyday to earn more...

  17. I agree, this place will be a hit. i've had it here in Chicago and the varieties and sauce options demand multiple visits.
  18. Wow, I'm going through a situation right now with my home warranty group. Specifically, AHS...american home shield. I purchased their program for my townhome and they've been good, but please read your contract and understand that most of these companies are meant for use in the occurrence of LARGE REpairs. For example, the contractors they send out are for LARGE projects and not minor things that go wrong at your place. Take in mind that things that are significant for the normal owner are MINOR to these warranty/insurance companies. However, since your place is much older, I assume that more major problems will occur and please note you may need to act like it's the !st occurrence of the issue/problem. The good news is that these companies are very responsive!
  19. What kind of CAMERA did you use for these pics? Looks great..
  20. @least you guys get snow("threat of snow") days off of work and the city shuts down.....up here in the midwest, you just deal with it and everyone hates the snow. (im bitter just thinking about the onset of depression thats about to occur here in chicago. Oh well, i should just say goodbye to the sun now...Actually I may have missed my chance, its already getting dark and has been gloomy all day.
  21. I know, but I'm trying to exhaust all options before paying someone $1250 to list, but if it gets to Dec. 7th w/o anyone signed for January I may have to go the HAR.com route...Where are all the money hungry realtors that want quick fast cash just to list on web???? (of course not the $1250, but I'd pay $500 for just to have someone list this)
  22. Thanks H.way6....I will definitely use this. Thanks all, I still have a month and half before i'm digging into profits....
  23. I'm trying to rent out my townhome (3bd, 3bath, priv. driveway and backyard) and I'm just curious where to list it? I'm currently using craigslist and backpage.com. I know that har.com is an option however I'm trying to avoid that awful "Realtor Fee"( I will actually pay someone a small fee to list me on har.com, because I have photographs and can show the property myself)... Any suggestions??
  24. Hmmm..I'm living in Chicago now and the weather kills this city. Pretty much mid-June through September is all that you get and it's down hill from there, esp October through April, but if it wasn't for the weather, the downtown/neartown area would be the greatest city in the states. Now, once you get outside of the closer areas, the city is really unimpressive.
  25. Star Pizza is the best and I'm a fan of "Chicago" style deep dish....you just have to have the appetite for it.
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