Cordova vs. Germantown???

Asked by Traci, 44067 Fri Jul 11, 2008

My husband and I recently moved to Memphis and we are really enjoying it so far! We are renting for a few months to get to know the area before we buy. We like the Cordova and Germantown areas. We were really surprised to see how much less expensive Cordova is than Germantown. We don't know why there is such a big price gap when they are only a few minutes apart and both seem nice. What are the benefits of living in Germantown vs. Cordova? Schools, govt, land, taxes, etc?
We appreciate any local advice - Thanks!

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Jo Shaner, Agent, Memphis, TN
Tue Jul 15, 2008
Glad to hear you are enjoying your move!!

Let me make this simple. All of Memphis is in Shelby County, but not all of Shelby County is Memphis. Shelby County is huge (in most respects) and also most large cities are in several different counties - not so here. Shelby County takes in: Bartlett, Arlington, Coliierville, Germantown, Millington, Lakeland and Memphis.

Each of the cities listed above are their own cities. Shelby County collects (property) taxes from all these and each city has their own city tax base with the exception of Lakeland, which does not charge their residents any city taxes.

Cordova is an area - not a city, within Shelby County. Part of it has already been annexed into the City of Memphis and some parts are call the "unincorporated" area, which means they presently those homeowners are not paying city taxes yet. They will as soon as they are annexed. It is not a matter of "if" just when they become annexed.

Now about Cordova - for many years it was a hot new area, with affordable updated homes. The county only taxes also made it very attractive to homebuyers. When Cordova lost it's appeal to become it's own city, many were upset with the annexation and started looking at areas that were already their own city outside of the Memphis City limits.

Germantown is an old city/township. The price per square footage commands more. So, if we were looking for a home with more modern ammenities, perhaps less than 10 years old under the $200K range - Cordova wins hands down.

I have lived in both areas and quite frankly, I loved both. However, timing is everything and depending on your budget, lifestyle, and savvy buying, both could be an awesome investment. Contact a Realtor (if you don't have one - let me know!) and have them show you how your family can find the right fit.

Take care,

Jo Shaner
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Don Debaer &…, , Memphis, TN
Tue Jul 15, 2008
Hello Traci
The biggest reason for the price gap is that Cordova is an unincorporated area, that is being slowiy but surely annexed by Memphis. About half of the Cordova area is already annexed. This will add Memphis City property taxes to your mortgage, which may double the current tax rate on the property which may only being paying Shelby county property taxes. Germantown, on the other hand, can not be annexed by Memphis because it is a city in itself. It has it's own property tax structure which is much lower than Memphis, Germantown also has lower crime statistics than the city limits of Memphis based on local crime statistics reported by both Shelby County and Memphis Crime Bureau. The school system in Germantown is highly rated as well and property values in Germantown are some of the highest in the area.
We would like to offer our help in your home search. Please make yourself at home on our web site and use the link on the home page to view all listed properties in our local MLS. Our contact information is also there should you have any questions.
Connie & Don
1 vote
Memphisgal97, Home Buyer, Lakeland, TN
Mon Jun 29, 2009
Don't buy in Cordova. You'll regret it. You can't sell a house in Cordova, and you'll always be able to sell a house in Germantown. Cordova is nice now, but give it a few years. As soon as something in the county goes "city" here---Memphis annexed--the crime always follows. I've lived here for 27 years and moved to four different areas of town because of this. STAY AWAY from Cordova!!!
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