We are considering a move from South Florida to Bend: what can we expect for quality of life, lifestyle, weather and friendliness...as well as homes?

Asked by Gsteve55, Fort Lauderdale, FL Wed Sep 28, 2011

We have no kids and two dogs and lead an active, outdoor-oriented lifestyle.....and would be looking to buy new or newer home in the $300,000 to $500,000 price range.......thanks!

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Susan Agli’s answer
Susan Agli, Agent, Bend, OR
Thu May 24, 2012
Go on line and look at our local newspaper, The Bend Bulletin and/or subscribe to the paper for Friday Sat, & Sun to get a really good feel for the community. Also if you can plan a vacation here in the summer and winter times to get an idea. Since you are living at a much lower elevation there is a little change to be prepared for. Some people take an aspirin a day for a week before they travel to higher elevations to prevent headaches and remember to drink lots of water when you are here.

If you decide to visit Bend I would love to show you around and give you a tour of the different neighborhoods and some of those pocket neighborhoods that you might not be aware of.

Susan Agli, Broker, SRES, ALHS
Coldwell Banker Morris
Licensed in Oregon
0 votes
Melanie Mait…, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Feb 27, 2013
I moved here almost 9 years ago from Arizona and have not looked back. I was very nervous because when you live somewhere where the sun always shines you can't imagine living anywhere else. I am happy to say Bend has over 300 days of sunshine! Bend's weather is wonderful, you can experience the seasons without the extreme heat or cold. (no humidity or bugs) With your two dogs and an active lifestyle, it sounds like Bend would be a no brainer! Bend was voted "Most dog friendly town in the US" and Bend is literally an outdoor playground year round! The people are amazing and so genuine!
I would be happy to send you listings of homes in your price range, please let me know what you are looking for in a home and I will start the search today!
If I can answer any more questions please don't hesitate to contact me, I am happy to help!

Melanie Maitre, Broker
Cascade Sotheby's International Realty
1 vote
Bonnie Savic…, Agent, Bend, OR
Sat Oct 1, 2011
Welcome `

The magic word is "dogs" ~ you will quickly learn that Bend loves their dogs - thus incredible dog parks throughout town - one even located along the Deschutes River. You will find this a very friendly outgoing community with lots of beautiful parks, running and biking trails. My favorite is the Deschutes River trail which meanders along the incredible icy waters of the Deschutes River. Everyone bikes around Bend rather than driving their cars. You will enjoy the true sense of community with something always happening almost everyday of the week. Bend always seems to be having a weekend festival and the breweries are the best!

Be ready for lots of sunshine even in the winter - originally from Michigan we find the winters pretty mild with most of the snow up on the mountains. In the summer enjoy kayaking all of the sparkling mountain lakes and streams while the winter offers skiing, cross country, snow mobiling and snow shoeing adventures.

As a broker in Bend I can assure you a large selection of quality homes in the price range you are looking to buy in ranging from the adorable craftsmen style to contemporary to the Pacific Northwest feel. I'm sure you will find a home to fit your lifestyle. The market is active, active, acitve due to all the great articles singing words of praise about the quality of life in Bend.

Be prepared to fall in love with this great community - would love to show you around and introduce you to all of our fun, eclectic coffee shops, bakeries and neighborhood breweries. Lots of great eateries!!!!

For further information about this great community please feel free to contact me via email: bonnie@bendproperty.com

Bonnie Savickas, Broker,e-Pro
Coldwell Banker Morris
486 Bluff Drive
Cell: 541-408-7537
1 vote
Christopher…, Agent, Tarrytown, NY
Thu Sep 29, 2011
Hi, You can go to http://www.homefair.com for great in-depth reports on any area. They have a cool side by side comparison feature for any zip codes as well.

Web Reference:  http://raveis.com/chrispagli
1 vote
Bonnie Savic…, Agent, Bend, OR
Thu Feb 28, 2013
It sounds like Bend is the right choice for you! It is a family friendly community and Bend loves their dogs. Outdoor enthusiasts flock to this vibant town due to all the fun things to do ~ all within a few miles of Bend. If you and your family are into kakaying, canoeing, hiking, biking or skiing - then look no further. Being originally from Michigan we find the winters mild - actually most of the snow happens up on the mountain.
What I love best is the friendly people - everyone on the trails say "Hi" and my husband is constantly asking -"Do you know those people" - my same response is no, but this is Bend. The breweries are amazing and each have their own inviting atmosphere - while the bakeries & cute eclectic coffee shops are over the top! Food is great ~ but more importantly affordable!
I wish you well in your new adventure and be sure to come and spend some time in Bend - I'm sure you will fall in love with this active community. Be sure not to miss the Deschutes river Trail - it is amazing and to think we have that much beauty right within town!

If you would like further information please feel free to contact me!Our market is very active at this time as buyers continue to find Bend exactly the place they want to live and raise a family in.

But more importantly - come spend some time to get a real feel for the town - after a few days here you will find which area feels the most like home to you!

My Best to you as you explore your options ~
Bonnie Savickas
Coldwell Banker Morris
0 votes
Susie Helfer, , 97701
Thu Feb 28, 2013
By now you've probably got 10 realtor responses and I don't normally answer these but, what a small world sometimes. Our dear client friends Mac & Betsy McDonald from Ft Lauderdale started buying investment properties with us 5 or 6 years ago and we sold them their dream home so they could retire here 2 years ago. We also helped another Ft Lauderdale client, Ramona Stewart buy her vacation home here in 2010 and sold it for her in a day in 2012. We discovered Betsy uses the services of Ramona's fiance in Ft Lauderdale for cosmetology related services where Ramona is office manager. Makes Ft. Lauderdale seem small town like Bend!
I suspect you've learned that Central Oregon is ALL about the outdoor lifestyle and the good news is, it's year round for those who care in imbibe.
As for quality of life, it's unbeatable as long as you have jobs or financial security. Moving here without that in place could prove disastrous. We are still experiencing very high unemployment.
Conistently in the top 10 reasons people love it here are the weather and the friendliness of our community. We do have seasons, though most years it seems like 3, winter from late October if we are lucky to end of May or June with a few days of spring mixed in, this weekend it's rumored to be 60. Summers are wonderful, with an average high of 85 - 90 with very low humidity though when the temps soar higher we can get some pretty spectacular lightning storms. Fall is usually gorgeous and we have been known to still be in the high 70s but our temperatures always cool at night to make for very comfortable deck weather.
When I moved her in 1997, I expected to lose the bigger city entertainment I had always enjoyed. That is certainly not the case. There is something for everyone almost every week and the problem is more deciding which you want to take in and Portland is a beautfiful 2 1/2 hour drive for anything you might possibly miss here.
Your price range is very doable now and you will find the architecture to be mostly NW Cratsman in newer building. You can find some older more traditional style too, We didn't find it difficult to help our Floridian friends find the perfect home.
Hope this helps. Oh I see I underestimated 14 ahead of me, goodness, well can't say we aren't enthusiastic!!
0 votes
Cascadiamgmt, , Bend, OR
Sun May 13, 2012
I would consider renting first to see what the community feels like. There are a lot of homes offered in the $300,000 to $500,000 price range. I would recommend walking aroung the neighborhood to get a feel for the ease and comfort of the area.

If you need a rental, please feel free to contact me at cascadiamgmt@earthlink.net.

Christina Gist
Certified Property Manager
Cascadia Property Management
1975 Sams Loop #3
Bend, Oregon 97701
(541)388-1239 Office
(541) 815-5333 Cell or Text
0 votes
Jayanddina, Home Buyer, Bend, OR
Thu Sep 29, 2011
Hi, I am from the Seattle area and just got back from a vacation in Bend. Needless to say, I'm ready to pack up all my stuff and move. Given that we are in no position to make an immediate move, I can only dream. My husband wants to go back in February to see the other half of the weather. We were there in September and I'll tell you, it was PERFECT. I half checked out a cool website that will compare cities based on all different criteria, including weather which is important. The website was Sperlings. I found comparing rainfall (a big deal in Seattle) snow ( a much bigger deal in Bend) very enlightening.
0 votes
Greg Barnwell, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
I can only say "ditto" to the previous answers. I grew up in Salem over on the other side of the mountains and we spent a lot of time over here camping, fishing, skiing, etc., etc. It wouldn't be much of an exaggeration to say I wanted to live here almost ever since I was in diapers - and that was a loooong time ago.
Different careers took me all over the US and 11 years overseas, but I always thought of the Bend area. We finally moved here about four years ago and it's great.
The Bend area is frequently ranked in the top ten retirement areas, second home areas, destination resort areas, etc. in the US.
A friend of ours from New York visited last summer and exclaimed, "People are sooooo NICE here! What's with that?" :-)
0 votes
Selena McNei…, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Thank you for your question! I have lived in Central Oregon since 1997. A lot of my family lives on the East Coast. I have found that everyone in Central Oregon is very friendly, and a lot of people move here for the outdoor activities, and climate. I have a German Shepard/Malamute and there are lots of great places to hike aroung here. I have some clients from Florida that I have been helping in the same price range. There is a large variety of different homes to choose from that are currently on the market. Would you like help with your searches? If you are not already working with an agent, then I would be happy to help! I will just need your search criteria. I also have some very interesting statistical Real Estate Reports for Bend, that gets updated on a monthly basis, if you would like me to email you those?
Have a nice day!

Selena McNeill, Broker
RE/MAX Key Properties
431 NW Franklin Ave, Suite 3
Bend OR 97701
Cell: (541) 390-0595
Office: (541) 728-0033
Fax: (541) 389-5433
Email: selenamcneill@yahoo.com
Website: http://www.selenamcneill.com
Website: http://smcneill.remax.com/

Licensed Realtor in the State of Oregon, since 2004.
0 votes
Laura Curry, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
It sounds like you are the perfect fit for the Bend lifestyle! Bend offers year round outdoor recreation, a friendly small town atmosphere, with many city conveniences. Depending on your preference, you can utilize the acres in the city dog parks, or head out to the trails for miles of on or off leash fun with your dogs. The town is very dog friendly. Our real estate market offers tremenous value for such a beautiful, active and progressive community. If we can be of further assistance, please let us know. You should consider a visit, so you can experience Bend for yourselves!
Kind Regards, Laura Curry & Pattie, Serbus, Brokers.
0 votes
Susie Helfer, , 97701
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Hi There:
I have lived here since 1997 but I am a native Oregonian so I recreated here probably from birth with my folks. What draws people to Bend and Central Oregon is the endless outdoor activities, we are really unlimited year round. You don't mention what you enjoy but your two dogs will enjoy endless gorgeous trails, hikes and dog parks. I just returned from taking my two from an hour hike along the Deschutes River. It is about 70 out, brilliant blue sky and very little humidity. As for the adults there is golfing on a par (pun intended) with much larger cities I would elaborate but don't know if it interests you. We have world class fishing and fly fishing, and some of the most pristine lakes known. As for winter we have skiing, snow shoeing and snow mobiling within a half hour of town. The ocean is about a 3 hour drive if a person misses the beach.
Our lifestyle is very laid back with a small town friendly feel, though we have any type of entertainment you would want, from concerts to theatre. Right now we are celebrating our 8th film festival.
Need I say more? I am obviously crazy about where I live. The chamber has a very informative fun visitors packet so if you get more serious I can send you one.
Thanks for inquiring!

Susie Helfer
0 votes
Laura Hilton, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
And, Bend is super dog friendly. You can hike almost all the trails with them off leash, You just need to be careful in town and at the several parks in town that have access to the river. Cops love to bust you at those spots but they leave you alone otherwise. I have 2 yellow labs and am child-free otherwise.
0 votes
Laura Hilton, Agent, Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Hi Ft. Lauderdalians,

Thank you for your inquiry about Bend and the what you can expect if you decide to move here. Bend is located in Central Oregon in the high desert and surrounded by National Forest and BLM land. It is an outdoor enthusiasts paradise! Year round mountain biking and hiking at the lower altitudes, lift service skiing at Mt. Bachelor (21 miles up the road) for 7-8 months a year, 100's of miles of xc and skate skiing, fishing, boating and your typical water sports at all the high lakes off The Cascade Lakes Highway in the summer.

As you probably know, we have 4 seasons here and you would not have to deal with the humidity (at all!) like you do in Ft. Lauderdale. BONUS! Your hair will inevitably look great! The people who move here are seeking quality of life and to be happy. And, they are! People smile at one another and because a lot of us are here for the recreational opportunities, we are of like-mind, like-kind. This means we have a lot of commonalities.

With regards to real estate, you would be buying at a great time. In the past 4 years, our market has depreciated over 50 percent! It is a little depressing as this has caused a lot of distress for sellers losing their homes to the bank. On the other hand, it offers a lot of opportunity for others coming into our market.
I would have to say that the only 2 negatives about Bend is people do not come here to make a lot of money. It is hard to find a decent paying job unless you own your own company or are in sales. The other is the trails become quite dusty when it doesn't rain. This really is not big deal but sometimes I hop on my road bike if I don't feel like getting super dirty during a ride:) And, the road biking here rocks! Great wide bike lanes everywhere.

I hope this helps.

Laura Hilton
Team Christine Browning
GoBend Realty
Bend, OR 97702
541 306 1800
0 votes
Julio and Li…, , Bend, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Hi Steve,

We moved 2 years ago from San Diego and never looked back. First winter was a little hard on my wife her being a CA girl but if you pick up winter sports or just plain hiking the cold is actually a blessing. Don't believe the 300 sunny days a year that they sell, just not true. There will be grey days and you should be ok with it. Quality of life is great, your bills will be lower: health insurance, DMV registration, no sales tax...and the town is big enough to have all big box stores you need and a full hospital. It is also dog heaven, and very friendly and laid back. And at that price range you will have plenty of options to purchase something real nice. Market is in the hole for property over 350k and we really need more out of towners to fall in love with our place.

Two former Californians
0 votes
Lana Lavenba…, Agent, Grants Pass, OR
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Oh my - you couldnt ask for a nicer place to be outdoors. Our areas are great for being outdoors with areas to ride atv's or motor bikes, horses, swim, ski, play in snow, or hike on trails all over the hills. Fun rivers, streams, lakes to fish in, boat in, play in. So much to do! Personally I feel people are very friendly and helpful here - weather is all over the board since nothing is "normal" these days. Homes - you will find a little of everything from unimproved land to very expensive homes.
0 votes
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