Sorry for the long post and I'm not sure this is the Board for this question.My wife and I plan to retire in a couple of years. We want to live near but not necessarily on the Gulf of Mexico because we both love the beach. We currently live outside of Dallas, TX (actually Plano which is a long way from the beach) and we normally take two beach vacations a year.We discovered what seems like an ideal location. Dothan, AL is located in the SE corner of Alabama, near the Florida and Georgia boarders, it is about a two hour drive straight down to Panama City Beach which happens to be our favorite beach area in the U.S. From what I can find out on the web, Dothan has a low to moderate cost of living, a small town atmosphere(less than 100K population), good housing opportunities (very low property taxes), good hospitals, shopping, senior activities, and national and state parks nearby, etc. The problem is the crime rate appears to be much higher than the national average especially burglery (almost double). Which is strange because living in a Dallas suburb, I can't remember the last time a home in my neighborhood burglerized. The question is how do I find out what the actual crime rate is for the area(we plan to spend some time in the area soon)? Also have any of you found or can you suggest a great place to retire (with a reasonable cost of living) that would be near the Gulf but not Texas.Thanks for your suggestions.
Don't know anything about Dothan but a little Googling brought up this link that seems to have some relevant info:www.idcide.com/citydata/al/dothan.htm
doesn't look like anyplace I would want to live based on the stats. Not to sound prejudiced, but it seems strange with the amount of whites to minorities that the crime rate should be as high as it is. Most major categories have doubled in the last 5 years. Anyway, just my 2 cents.Hal
Let's compare Dothan and Plano (Plano doesn't come out all that well):Dothan:Offense - 2005 onlyBurglary - 760 Larceny, Theft - 2,617 Motor Vehicle Theft - 155 Arson - 0Plano: Offense - 2005 onlyBurglary - 1,365 Larceny, Theft - 6,723 Motor Vehicle Theft - 589 Arson - 29 Dothan:Offense - 2005 onlyMurder, Man-Slaughter - 8 Forcible Rape - 57 Robbery - 156 Aggravated Assault - 112Plano:Offense - 2005 Murder, Man-Slaughter - 2 Forcible Rape - 54 Robbery - 119 Aggravated Assault - 546 When I lived in Atlanta we went through Dothan on the way to Panama City and I thought it a charming, lovely town and that's why I took the time to look up the stats.
Whoops! I left out the links:Dothan:http://www.idcide.com/citydata/al/dothan.htmPlano:http://www.idcide.com/citydata/tx/plano.htm
Stats for Dothan don't look too good to me; especially as compared to Plano. Crime rate looks like it's slowly on the rise, and the average income is only slightly above average for the state. And that income isn't very much. If you can find out what the owner-occupied vs rental rate is, you'll probably get a better idea of what the future holds.
The question is how do I find out what the actual crime rate is for the area (we plan to spend some time in the area soon)? Also have any of you found or can you suggest a great place to retire (with a reasonable cost of living) that would be near the Gulf but not Texas.Jkonvo99Go to the home page of Cobb, Derrick, Boyd & White at www.lawyers.com/Alabama/Dothan/Cobb,-Derrick,-Boyd-and-White-27922-f.html and send an e-mail to John C. White. He is now practicing law but was police chief of Dothan for several years. He will give you straight answers.What you want to ask is not the numbers but why the increase in the past few years. Particularly why more B&Es and petty crimes. Personally I believe it's because of migration to the area but I could be wrong. It could be drug related crimes (I note the number of car thefts has increased and that usually happens when there's increased drug use).What you could ask also is where is the location of the increase in crimes. Again, my bet it is localized and not systematic.HTH,MichaelR
Let's compare PER CAPITA crime ratesDothan pops....62000 in 2005Plano pops.....270,000 in 2006Dothan:Offense - 2005 onlyBurglary - 760 Larceny, Theft - 2,617 Motor Vehicle Theft - 155 Arson - 0Plano: (need to divide this by 4.5 to get same rate/capita)Offense - 2005 onlyBurglary - 1,365 (340)Larceny, Theft - 6,723 (1650)Motor Vehicle Theft - 589 (147)Arson - 29 ( 7.5)Dothan:Offense - 2005 onlyMurder, Man-Slaughter - 8 Forcible Rape - 57 Robbery - 156 Aggravated Assault - 112Plano:Offense - 2005 Murder, Man-Slaughter - 2 (.5)Forcible Rape - 54 (14)Robbery - 119 (30)Aggravated Assault - 546 (135)Dothan has 1/4 the pops...you got a lot better change of getting killed there...or raped....or robbed....DOthan gets dumped on by hurricanes...be sure to buy a place that is very high and dry.....t.
Plano is a nice place to retire...if you don't have to 'downsize'...Lots of activities...good airport so you can fly to beaches everywhere...Thailand...Costa RicaMexico.....Lots of hurricane damage across a lot of AL from Rita and Katrina..not sure if in Dothan...remember driving through there 18 months ago...trees down everywhere...houses damaged with trees....wasn't pretty.....2 months after hurricane...I've been retired 8 years in Plano.....t.
Let's compare PER CAPITA crime ratesSince the stats are per 100,000 it doesn't make any sense to compare them per capita.
oh...dang...I better keep my shotgun handy...I live in Plano.....t.
Gosh..there isn't a big percentage of folks over 60 in Plano....3% for men...... (Help, I'm a minority and I haven't gotten my entitlements....)....MOre than twice as high a percentage in Dothan, AL...I suspect a lot of folks from the coast moved up to Dothan.....half the companies never rebuilt...2/3rds the jobs along the Gulf disappeared..whole towns like Pass Christian MS...and lots of the AL coast wiped away.....And likely folks from New Orleans area just 'moved' whereever they had family, roots, or a job......The income level in Dothan about 1/2 the income level of Plano..... you can be 'poor' in Plano with a $30,000 salary.....and average in Dothan....I suspect you got some mighty rough humidity there.....t.
If you love the beach, why would you want to live a 2 hour drive from it? We live a block from the beach in Montecito, a small town adjacent to Santa Barbara. I'm not suggesting you look here, because the median house price is $2.8 million. It's been over 30 years since I was last in Texas, but Galviston seemed like a nice beach town. There's nothing like being able to stroll along the beach anytime you feel like it.db
I know people who live between Houston and Corpus Christi close to Port Aransas. Tivoli and Austwell are small towns right on the water and the cost of housing is extremely reasonable.
between Houston and Corpus ChristiMust be hotter than hell in the summer and have unbearable humidity.
"Must be hotter than hell in the summer and have unbearable humidity"Just like Alabama......You live along the gulf coast, and it is humid......t.
"Must be hotter than hell in the summer and have unbearable humidity"Then you would love Houston ... come on down!
Must be hotter than hell in the summer and have unbearable humidity. They seem to like it, having lived there for several years.I assume you've lived there, as well and didn't find it that great?
I assume you've lived there, as well and didn't find it that great?No, but I lived in NJ where the summers were also hot and humid. I now live on the coast in Northern California. And yes, I do not miss the humdity or all the snow in the winter.
mendoman: No, but I lived in NJ where the summers were also hot and humid. I now live on the coast in Northern California. And yes, I do not miss the humdity or all the snow in the winter.Shussshh, you idiot! Now 50,000 others will come!Sheesh!cliff... stingy with CA.
Shussshh, you idiot! Now 50,000 others will come!Not me! No way in H311.
Yeah, but Cliff, he doesn't live where you do, where it's nasty and hot! He lives in the same county I spent many formative years and where the weather is fantastic! Willits High School is my alma mater.Regards,Grumpy
Happy for that, cc, thanks.Anti-growth is almost a mantra along the south coast of Santa Barbara County, whereas the movers and shakers in Santa Maria in north county aspire to another Orange County. Santa Barbara County has to split at some time, because the money is in the south and the population is increasingly in the north, leading to a situation in which the south coast pays the piper, but north county calls the tune: The north county has a majority on the board of supervisors.db
He lives in the same county I spent many formative years and where the weather is fantastic!Grumpy, that's right Mendocino County. I see you picked up on my user name.
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