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regina steamer

Union County vs. Meckenburg County

17 posts in this topic

This is my first time posting so please be patient with me! :)

My husband just took a job in Indian Trail, NC so my family will be moving to NC this summer. We know nothing of the area or the schools. Does anyone have recommendations as to a nice family area that has parks, pools, good schools, ect? I have heard Matthews is nice but homes are expensive and that Union County (Indian Trail area) has affordable homes but property taxes are high. Any truth to that? We are from Colorado Springs which will give you an idea of what we are used to.

Thanks in advance!

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Actually I would expect property taxes to be much less in Union county over Mecklenburg. I live in the Northern part of Meck. so I can't offer much more in the way of comparisons.

Welcome to UrbanPlanet BTW.

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You will get many varied responses to this I'm sure, but my vote would go to Mecklenburg. I suspect that Mecklenburg County public schools are better than Union County. Infrastructure items like parks and such are undoubtedly much more developed in Mecklenburg. Union County is really more of a low density suburb for Charlotte.

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Working in Indian Trail, it might make sense to live in Union, but like Norff said, Union lacks certain ammenities. Taxes should be lower in Union, as are housing prices. Overall people will swear that Union has better schools. This may be true at the district level, but Providence High (that serves Matthews) is certainly superior to any school in Union in my opinion.

I think that both southeast Mecklenburg and western Union are relatively addordable, and comparable to Colorado Springs (Union I would suspect to be less unless you chose a gated community).

Both areas would be considered family areas, though Union typically has younger families, which is a result of lower home prices.

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Indian Trail is going through a comprehensive planning process right now. A moratorium was passed in December on any new projects for the next 18 months. That said, it doesn't in any way affect the already approved housing developments for which there are around 4,000 lots. We're talking LOTS of new people with virtually no transportation improvements scheduled. Inidan Trail has no public parks, no sidewalks, and is encombered by US-74, its link to the world, as traffic hell. I'd go to Meck.

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i agree that mecklenburg is probably the better bet. Union has some serious problems with traffic and other infrastructure. Commuting across the border to union will be fine (i know some people who commute from ballantyne to monroe, and traffic isn't bad). And living in mecklenburg will guard you against having your quality of life determined by union county, which is much more rural and sprawly. Usually, it comes down to pocketbook and preference. From my perspective, home size and lot size are lower priority, but that is for you to determine.

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Mecklenburg :

Better area

More things to do

Better infrastructure

Better schools

Forward progress in general

Union :

Cheaper taxes

Cheaper houses

I would say move to Matthews or one of the new developments between Matthews and Ballantyne. Those houses are affordable and you would be going against traffic coming into Charlotte from 74 so the commute to work in Union would not be a problem.

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I moved from Charlotte to Weddington in union county about 8 years ago and have never hated a place so much. I went to Union county schools and its safe to say that they suck, no supplies horrible teachers, and no money for anything. Stay in Charlotte. Indian trail gives you the sense of being in a trashy little town with to many people and trailors.

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I go to Providence High here in Charlotte, and most certainly it is superior to any school in Union, probably superior to any school in the state for that matter. Yeah, it's hard, but I like it and it will really prepare me for college.

Union County is ok, the only reason I would ever move there is for lower taxes and cheaper houses, as well as lower density (if you're into that). Mecklenburg is far superior in amenities as well as schools are slightly better overall. True, taxes are higher and houses are more expensive, but it is less suburban and you are surrounded with things to do, places to eat, etc.

Your decision basically comes down to the amount of money you are willing to pay. If you are willing to pay more, I would definately go to Mecklenburg Co.

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I go to Providence High here in Charlotte, and most certainly it is superior to any school in Union, probably superior to any school in the state for that matter. Yeah, it's hard, but I like it and it will really prepare me for college.

Providence is not the best school in the state! Remeber Charlotte has exceptional private schools. In terms of Puplic schools though Providence is indeed the best.

Property taxes are far lower (FAR LOWER) in Union County, my parents pay like 1/8 of my property tax for a slightly smaller house. :o

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If you want to be in Union County, but you also want to be close to things to do, I would look down Rea Road right across the county line. There are plenty of homes being built along that road. Blakeney Town Center is being built, so that will be close by, and Ballantyne is pretty close too. I'm not sure about Union County schools, but there are a few private schools in Mecklenburg that aren't too far away...

Besides, taxes in Mecklenburg really aren't that high compared to other places in the country, and depending on where your coming from the taxes in Mecklenburg could seem high or low to you..

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I go to Providence High here in Charlotte, and most certainly it is superior to any school in Union, probably superior to any school in the state for that matter. 

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

But it won't save you a lot of money on car insurance. :rolleyes:

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Providence is not the best school in the state! Remeber Charlotte has exceptional private schools. In terms of Puplic schools though Providence is indeed the best.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That's what I meant, among public schools.

Lol @ metro

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Thanks everyone for the information! It sounds like we would be more comfortable in Matthews. We are used to being able to walk to shops and parks and things like that. We have two elementary age children and need convience. At this point, Indian Trail does not seem to offer too much other than space and lower taxes. I figured Indian Trail was small based on the town's web site.

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I grew up in Union County and think Union County is a great place to live. I am moving to Charlotte now but that is because I'm in my early twenties and need more around me. I would suggest moving to Mecklenburg but not because anything is wrong with Union County. Despite what many people have written here, Union DOES have very good schools but as altrvr posted it is district by district. Indian Trail feeds into Sun Valley's system, which isn't as good as Weddington's or Parkwood's (Waxhaw). With what you are looking for I would suggest Waxhaw over Indian Trail if you do look at Union County.

I went to Parkwood and loved every year there. Parkwood is further out in a rural area which leads people to believe that the education would be more "un-exposed" but nothing could be further from the truth. While I was there, and this should still ring true, Parkwood had a very strong international influence. Almost a quarter of my classmates had grownup in other countries. My friends (although American by birth) had grown up in Kenya, Ivory Coast, Papua New Guinea, Australia, Peru, Columbia, Japan and so many other places. This was due to JAARS and Wycliff, which are international missionary organizations based in the school district. People can say what they want here about Meck's educational system (which in many school

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I think by now you have gotten the gist of the two places. I'll add my 2-sense, for all it's worth. My wife and I have been working on our move for a year now. We are both dentists so we had to do licensing, sell our practice here, find a location there, sell our real estate here etc. etc. We have a target of August to be down there as things have gone really well.

Our situation is unique from many because we can put our business close to where we want to live and not worry about the commute. OTOH, it make it really scary for an outsider who knows little about a community to make a $900k crapshoot about where the best commercial place to locate would be. So, after tons of research, what I can say is this:

If you want a more rural lifestyle with more land and understand that, in terms of taxes, you will pay less but get only what you pay for, choose Union County. They have tremendous growth and the schools are strained at the moment but, overall, we thought were very good. There are some stunning "suburban" communities out there that have a lot of value for the money. There are also high end communities that would equal or surpass most here in NY (and at 1/3 the price). You will notice though, that sprinkled between those communities are still trailer parks and what appears to be mostly latent farmland. You will lead an automobile lifestyle for now because most of the "town centers" have not been built yet. I can assure you that there are beautiful plans, though.

If you want more access to shopping, dining, culture and people, choose Meck. The city is so forward thinking and it will be a very exciting place to be over the next 10-20 years if they manage the growth correctly (ie - not like Atlanta from what i hear)Your taxes will be higher but are still very low compared to other parts of the country. Get online and check out school districts. Many in CMS are awesome despite the gossip. We chose Meck, in part, BECAUSE of the school system. We wound up in area 4 and our office will be built in a brand new mixed use in Matthews. There's a huge range of prices and something for everyone.

My advice is to find a good buyer's broker and just spend a day or two driving around. You'll get a feel for what you like.

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