Long Island, New York is famed for its stunning, white sand beaches, its superb shopping in malls like the Americana, its mansions on the North Shore, and of course, the world-renowned Hamptons. If you're thinking of moving here, or if you have friends or family that are about to take up residence in Nassau or Suffolk Counties, here are some points to ponder before making the move.
01 of 04
Always Ask About The Property Taxes
In addition to making sure that the price of a house is within your budget, you will need to ask about the property taxes. These can raise your housing expenses because, depending on where you buy, they can be very high. I've heard stories of people who retired, paid off their mortgage, but then had to sell and move to more inexpensive areas because the property taxes were too high.
In one case, a woman lived in an area noted for its fine school district. It was to her family's advantage when she was raising her children, but once they grew up, it mattered little to her. However, she was still paying high property taxes as a result of this.
So think long and hard about where you want to live, and one of the factors that you should seriously consider is the cost of property taxes. And remember that they can go up as the years go by.
02 of 04
How Much Traffic Is In The Area?
Long Island, New York has some beautiful, natural expanses. But it's also well-known for its traffic in places like the Long Island Expressway, which is jokingly called "the world's longest parking lot." (There was once a robbery in the Americana shopping center, but the thieves were apprehended when they got stuck in traffic!)
If you are moving to the island for a new job, make sure you try out the route from the house you're considering. Getting stuck in traffic can add extra time to what may seem like a short commute.
03 of 04
Can You Deal With The Frigid Winters and Hot Summers?
If you're moving from a warmer area to Nassau or Suffolk Counties, you should think about the Long Island, NY climate. Although the average temperatures may seem fine, remember that they're just the expected amount of heat or cold. Mother Nature doesn't always cooperate and in the summer, the humidity makes the already hot weather seem unbearable. And for those who have a problem with the cold, remember that the wind chill factor makes the already frigid temperatures seem much lower.
Long Island and much of the surrounding areas are also home to snowstorms. Then there are events like Superstorm Sandy, which wreaked havoc on many Long Island communities. Some people were without electric power for weeks, and others, like many people who reside in Long Beach, had to evacuate their homes because of the severity of the storm and the consequent flooding.
We've been known to have an occasional mild earthquake as well, although this is pretty rare.
04 of 04
How Noisy Is The Community You Want To Buy In?
Long Island, NY has wonderful communities, some with large expanses of green grass, or with access to nearby parks or sprawling, white sand beaches. But you should make sure that there are no major noises that will make your days or nights unbearable.
When considering buying a house, make sure that you visit during the day as well as during the night. Go to the property on a weekend, but don't neglect to see what it's like on weekends. For instance, you might find the perfect house that is located in a normally very quiet neighborhood. But if it's in proximity to a bar or restaurant, you might find the comings and goings on weekends to be a real detriment.