Questions Relocation Buyers Should Ask When Moving to Carlsbad (Part 1 of 3)
Are you considering a relocation to the Carlsbad area? There are plenty of issues to consider and questions you should ask as you get started.
I have worked with many relocation buyers, some coming from areas of California and others moving from out of state, and I find a lot of similarities in what they want to know when engaged in their home search. And even more so when they are here on a house hunting trip.
Each buyer’s situation, of course, is unique, but there are general questions that everyone seems to ask at one time or another, apart from housing costs and related matters such as how to buy a home. And having made 4 major relocations myself as a homeowner, the most recent from Boston to Carlsbad, I am pretty in tune with the things buyers who are moving here like to know, as I did when I was investigating moving here.
These are some things relocating buyers commonly ask about, or should consider, as they are exploring the Carlsbad area as part of their house search.
Buyers often want to be within close proximity, usually by car, of shopping, primarily groceries and perhaps specialty food stores like Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Costco.
And for those coming from other areas the question often is who the major grocers in the area are – here we have Sprouts, Albertsons, Vons, Ralphs, and Jimbos. Indeed just the common question of "where is the shopping near this neighborhood" comes up often.
There is also a Gelson’s in South Carlsbad, a couple of Frazier Farms near Carlsbad, a handful of small produce markets, TipTop Meats (European-style deli) and a couple of fish markets...Top Choice Fish and Pelly’s Fish Market... plus a small fish counter at Bluewater Grill in the Village.
There are often questions about other general shopping – clothing, sport equipment, appliances and stuff you need daily. I always point out the Carlsbad Premium Outlets Mall with buyers here, as all as letting them know about the Home Depot, Best Buy and other major stores, as well as the general shopping areas – in Carlsbad Village, La Costa, Bressi Ranch, and locations in neighboring towns. If you want larger malls, in addition to the outlets Carlsbad offers The Forum, an upscale shopping area in south Carlsbad, La Costa Town Square, and The Shoppes at Carlsbad up north at El Camino and the 78 freeway.
You probably won’t lack for the bulk of the shopping you need in Carlsbad and surrounding communities, with abundant strip malls along major roads…it just takes a while to get used to where things are and how to best get there. And even after my 12+ years here I am still discovering new shops here and there, and of course new retailers open.
If you are shopping for fresh produce the farmer’s market is in Carlsbad Village on Wednesdays on State Street from 3 – 6 pm (longer in the summer).
Accessibility to commuting routes is often an important question for buyers, who sometimes are interested in neighborhoods close to major roads, so gaining a sense of these routes should be part of the due diligence when home searching.
California freeways are legendary for traffic, especially at rush hour in the mornings and the late afternoons/evenings during the week, and buyers often inquire about major roads to use to commute to avoid the freeway if possible.
And of course proximity to major roads, while convenient, also means traffic noise, and increased pollution.
The more challenging issue, and question is “how long does it take to get to…?” The best guidance I can provide, other than a very general sense, is for buyers to test out different routes themselves. El Camino Real, Carlsbad Village Drive, Tamarack Avenue and Palomar Airport work well depending on where you need to go here in Carlsbad as alternatives to the 5 freeway, but depending on where and when you are travelling the 5 is the best despite traffic. The 78 freeway runs east and west from the 5 freeway to Escondido.
Buyers from some areas may be used to an extensive public transportation system – busses, trolleys, trains - or feel that it’s important, so it often comes up as a question. Our area has a pretty good public transportation system given we are not the city, and depending on where you want to go.
Here in Carlsbad you can catch Amtrak in the Village, north to LA and points beyond or south to downtown San Diego. The North County Transit District includes the Coaster (commuter rail – from Oceanside, stopping in Carlsbad at 2 stations, and multiple station on the way to downtown), the Sprinter (light rail train from Oceanside inland to Escondido), and the Breeze (elaborate bus system).
The Carlsbad Beaches
Everyone wants to know about the beaches, access to them, distance from different neighborhoods, and so on. We have 7 miles of coastline so there are plenty of beaches to suit every taste, some more crowded than others, and a range of activities depending on the time of year.
Parking is fairly plentiful except during the holidays and summer weekends, and mostly free (except for several state park lots). You can also park across the street from the beach in many areas in adjacent neighborhoods. So overall parking and access to our beaches is great compared to some places I lived back east.
Be aware that many of Carlsbad beaches have stairs to access them, except from the pay lot at Tamarack Surf Beach, and along the south Coast Highway at Ponto.
Stay tuned for Part 2 on relocation issues where we talk about dining, schools, the weather, recreation, and crime, and finish up with how I can help you with your relocation to Carlsbad, or perhaps other areas nearby in North San Diego County.
But if you are ready to begin a discussion about your move, in particular questions about housing, budget, neighborhoods, and the process itself, let’s talk now.
Why not give me a call at (760) 840-1360 so we can discuss your needs and questions, and I can find out what’s really important to you when relocating here, or perhaps looking for a beach or second home.
In addition to personal guidance, and helping you with your home search, I will also share several questionnaires that will help you think through what you really want in your home and what lifestyle issues are important to you.
If you are interested, call me or visit my website and you can download those questionnaires. I have several useful relocation questionnaires, too - ask me!!