Wright Patterson AFB


Housing & Real Estate

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In Clark, Greene, Miami, Montgomery and Preble Counties

Wright Patterson Housing and Real Estate in Clark Greene Miami Montgomery and Preble Counties

A low cost of living and abundant natural amenities in Clark, Greene, Miami, Montgomery and Preble counties contribute to a high quality of life not often found in large metropolitan areas. Population density in Clark County was 348 people per square mile, 391 people per square mile in Greene County, 252 people per square mile in Miami County, 1,160 people per square mile in Montgomery County and 100 people per square mile in Preble County in 2010, the U.S. Census found.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, in Greene County, is more than 27,500 people strong and approximately 85 percent of personnel live off base in surrounding communities, according to the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Economic Impact Report in 2014.

The counties’ communities give newcomers plenty of choices when selecting a home. Enlist the help of a reputable real estate agent to help you sort through the area’s home options. The Ohio Association of Realtors is a central source of local real estate information and services. Visit http://ohiorealtors.org to find expertise and professional services for those interested in purchasing a new home.

CLARK COUNTY

Clark County has a population of nearly 136,000 and is nearly 400 square miles in the heart of Ohio. It is part of the Springfield Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Elevation across the county ranges from 843 feet at Park Layne to 1,305 feet at Pleasant Township. Miami and Montgomery counties lie to the west, Greene County to the south, Madison County to the east and Champaign County to the north. For more information, visit www.clarkcountyohio.gov.

Cities in Clark County near Wright-Patterson include Springfield and New Carlisle.

Springfield

76 E. High St., Third Floor
Springfield, OH 45502
937-324-7300
https://springfieldohio.gov

Springfield is centrally located between Dayton and Columbus and sits 20 miles northeast of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The city’s 25.29 square miles are home to nearly 60,000 residents.

Springfield was founded by James Demint, a former teamster from Kentucky, in 1801. When Clark County was created from parts of Champaign, Madison and Greene counties, Springfield was named for Springfield, Massachusetts — which, at the time, was important for hosting the U.S. Federal Springfield Armory, enduring the Attack on Springfield during King Philip’s War in 1675 and Shays’ Rebellion in 1787.

Several factors contributed to the rapid growth of Springfield and Clark County. The Old National Road was completed through Springfield in 1839, and the railroads of the 1840s provided profitable business to the area. Agriculture, then industry, flourished. By the beginning of the Civil War, the two had joined to help Springfield become one of the world’s leading manufacturers of agricultural equipment.

Springfield is still known for agriculture, but there is more to the city than that. The city also offers countless miles of biking and hiking trails, historic sites, shopping and an abundance of outdoor activities.

Forbes named Springfield one of the 10 best cities to live cheaply. Median rent is $645, and selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $940.

Mean travel time to work for those living in Springfield is 19.7 minutes.

GREENE COUNTY

Greene County in southwest Ohio covers more than 413 square miles. South of Clark County, Greene is bordered on the west by Montgomery County, Warren and Clinton counties to the south and Fayette County to the east. Elevation across the county ranges from 756 feet in Spring Valley to more than 1,100 feet in Ross.

For more information, visit www.co.greene.oh.us.

Communities in Greene County near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base include Beavercreek, Fairborn, Kettering, Xenia and Yellow Springs, the county seat.

Beavercreek

1368 Research Park Drive
Beavercreek, OH 45432
937-426-5100
www.ci.beavercreek.oh.us

The Beavercreek area was first settled in the early 1800s, but the city itself was incorporated Jan. 11, 1980. Now, the city has about 46,000 residents and encompasses 26.4 square miles.

Beavercreek is characterized by a spacious, rolling, wooded environment, providing an attractive setting for the residential neighborhoods. Beavercreek is considered to be among the most desirable locations in the Dayton area with an outstanding quality of life. Consequently, it is one of the fastest-growing suburbs with housing ranging from exclusive, custom-built homes to charming older neighborhoods. Beavercreek still contains a considerable amount of open, undeveloped property with neighboring unincorporated areas subject to future annexation. Many Beavercreek residents are current or former Air Force and civilian employees of nearby Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and its defense industry contractors.

For more information about Beavercreek’s neighborhoods and housing choices, visit the city’s website.

Median rent in Beavercreek is $1,100, and selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,633. Mean travel time to work is 18.9 minutes.

Fairborn

44 W. Hebble Ave.
Fairborn, OH 45324
937-754-3030
http://ci.fairborn.oh.us

Centrally located from downtown Dayton, Cincinnati and Columbus, Fairborn is the home of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The city is 13.16 square miles with a population of 33,452.

It is the only city in the world with the name of Fairborn, a portmanteau word created from the names Fairfield and Osborn; the two villages that merged after the Great Dayton Flood of 1913 forced Osborn to move out of a flood plain and alongside Fairfield. Fairfield was originally founded in 1816 and Osborn in 1850. Fairborn was officially incorporated more than 100 years later, in 1950.

From the historical to the latest in new home designs, Fairborn offers numerous neighborhoods with a wide variety of housing choices. Additionally, the community offers approximately 686 acres of parks, nature preserves and wetland reserves, providing hours of hiking, biking, picnicking, fishing and exploring opportunities for residents and visitors to the area.

The mean price for a detached home in Fairborn was $191,762 in 2013, and median rent is $776. Mean travel time to work is 19.7 minutes.

Kettering

3600 Shroyer Road
Kettering, OH 45429
937-296-2400
www.ketteringoh.org

The earliest settler in what is now Kettering was John Patterson, a farmer who built the area’s first log cabin in 1798. In 1841, an expanding population forced the creation of Van Buren Township, a name that would remain for over 100 years. In November 1952, voters of Van Buren Township approved the incorporation of the Village of Kettering, named for its most outstanding citizen, the famous philanthropist and inventor of the automobile self-starter, Charles. F. Kettering. A special census in 1955 recorded the village’s population at 38,118, qualifying it for city status. Kettering’s population now sits at nearly 56,000 and encompasses 18.68 square miles. Kettering is also part of Montgomery County.

The cost of living in Kettering is 4 percent above average in Ohio but 6 percent below the national average. The mean price for a detached home in Kettering was $129,670 in 2013, and median rent is $726. Mean travel time to work is 20.1 minutes.

Xenia

101 N. Detroit St.
Xenia, OH 45385
937-376-7232
www.ci.xenia.oh.us

Xenia (pronounced Zeen-yuh) derives its name from the Greek word for hospitality. The “City of Hospitality” lives up to its name with its central location and easy access to the cultural amenities of three metropolitan areas while retaining the traditions and atmosphere of a Midwestern town. The city is 13.28 square miles with a population of nearly 26,000.

Greene’s county seat was founded in 1803 when Ohio was admitted into the Union. However, it wasn’t incorporated until 1817 and became a city in 1834. But it was the arrival of the Little Miami Railroad (now the site of the Little Miami Scenic Trail) in 1843 that gave the city its first big industrial impetus.

The “City of Hospitality” is an ideal place to settle down with a cost of living that is slightly below average for Ohio and 10.4 percent below the national average. The selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,054, and median rent is $678. Mean travel time to work is 22 minutes.

Yellow Springs

101 Dayton St.
Yellow Springs, OH 45387
937-767-2686
www.yellowspringsohio.org

Named “One of the 10 Coolest Small Towns in America,” Yellow Springs is an eclectic village of approximately 3,500, known for recreational attractions, wonderful shops, unique restaurants, lively arts and healthful living. The community is culturally diverse, values self-expression and prides itself on being open, friendly and creative. Green space and farmland create a lovely rural ambience, but Yellow Springs is only 12 miles from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and less than an hour from Cincinnati and Columbus.

Founded in the early 1800s, the town quickly became a popular health resort, famous for the curative waters of the yellow spring. An authentic small town, the streets of this thriving community are lined with an eclectic assortment of shops and galleries, as well as a grocery, pharmacy and hardware store. Restaurants offer a variety of food, art and entertainment. Rich visual and performing arts of all persuasions abound in this vibrant community of artists. Find art all around town, in restaurants and shops, murals on the sides of buildings, a bronze sculpture trail and much more.

Yellow Springs has a varied employment base, from a large, international company to small startups and a brewery. A significant number of residents find work locally, but Yellow Springs is an easy commute to jobs elsewhere in the region and only 15 minutes from Wright-Patterson.

The cost of living in Yellow Springs is 10 percent above average for Ohio and less than 1 percent below the national average. The mean price for a detached home in the Yellow Springs area is $191,762, and median rent is $709.

MIAMI COUNTY

Miami County covers nearly 407 square miles with a population of 102,500. North of Montgomery County, Miami is bordered on the west by Darke County. Shelby County lies to the north and Champaign and Clark counties to the east. Elevation across the county ranges from 827 feet in the middle of the county near Troy and Tipp City to more than 1,170 feet in Brown Township.

For more information, visit www.co.miami.oh.us.

Communities in Miami County near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base include Huber Heights.

Huber Heights

6131 Taylorsville Road
Huber Heights, OH 45424
937-233-1423
www.hhoh.org

Huber Heights developed northeast of Dayton on land between the Great Miami River and the Mad River. Huber Heights is situated on 22.7 square miles where about 38,000 people reside.

The city is named for Charles Huber, the developer who constructed a number of the houses that would later comprise the city. Suburban development began in the area in 1956. The former Wayne Township, now defunct, incorporated as the city of Huber Heights on Jan. 23, 1981. Huber Heights continued to grow by annexing parcels in Greene and Miami counties. Huber Heights is the third-largest suburb in the Dayton Metropolitan Statistical Area by population, behind Kettering and Beavercreek.

The cost of living in Huber Heights is slightly higher than the average in Ohio but more than 7 percent below the national average. Median rent in Huber Heights is $872 and median selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,208. Mean travel time to work is 22.6 minutes.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY

In 2015, the population in Montgomery County was estimated to be 532,258, making it the fifth-most populous county in Ohio. The county sits on 461.55 square miles.

Elevation across the county ranges from 699 feet near the Great Miami River to 1,090 in Kettering. Preble County lies to the west, Miami County to the north, Green County to the east, and Butler and Warren counties to the south. For more information, visit www.mcohio.org.

Communities in Montgomery County near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base include Centerville, Dayton and Riverside.

Centerville

100 W. Spring Valley Road
Centerville, OH 45458
937-433-7151
www.centervilleohio.gov

Centerville is primarily in Montgomery County, with a small portion in Greene County. The city’s 10.78 square miles are home to nearly 24,000 residents.

Benjamin Robbins named the community “Centreville” after his hometown, Centreville, New Jersey, and because it was located between two rivers and central to other communities like Dayton and Lebanon. Centreville was founded in 1796. By 1900, the U.S. Post Office changed the spelling to Centerville. It became a city in December 1968.

The architecture in the city reflects its long history. Many of the homes were built before World War I and reflect different styles of the era. The city has the largest collection of early stone houses in Ohio; they are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The cost of living is nearly 10 percent higher in Centerville compared with the rest of the state, and only slightly lower than the national average. Median rent is $843 and the mean price for a detached house in 2013 was $129,670. Mean travel time to work for those living in Centerville is 21.5 minutes.

Dayton

101 W. Third St.
Dayton, OH 45402
937-333-3333
www.daytonohio.gov

Dayton is the sixth-largest city in Ohio and is Montgomery County’s county seat. It is 12 miles southwest of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. This residential community is 55.65 square miles with an estimated population of 140,599.

Dayton was founded April 1, 1796, by a group of 12 settlers known as “The Thompson Party.” In 1797, Daniel C. Cooper laid out Mad River Road, the first overland connection between Cincinnati and Dayton, opening the Mad River Country to settlement. Ohio was admitted into the Union in 1803, and the city of Dayton was incorporated in 1805. The city was named after Jonathan Dayton, a captain in the American Revolutionary War who signed the U.S. Constitution and owned a significant amount of land in the area.

The Dayton area is a logistical centroid for manufacturers, suppliers and shippers. Dayton also plays host to significant research and development in fields like industrial, aeronautical and astronautical engineering. Much of this innovation is due in part to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and its place within the community. With the decline of heavy manufacturing, Dayton’s businesses have diversified into a service economy that includes insurance and legal sectors, as well as health care and government sectors. Other than defense and aerospace, health care accounts for much of the Dayton area’s economy.

Forbes named Dayton the happiest city to work in 2013. Mean travel time to work for those who reside in Dayton is 20.4 minutes. The cost of living in the city is almost 5 percent below average for Ohio and nearly 14 percent below the national average. Median rent in the city is $640, and median selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $985.

Riverside

5200 Springfield St., Suite 100
Riverside, OH 45431
937-233-1801
http://riverside.oh.us

Riverside is about 7 miles from Wright-Patterson AFB, with about 25,000 residents in the city’s 9.72 square miles. The city is home to numerous technology, industrial, research and development, logistics and service-based businesses.

In 1994, Riverside merged with the surrounding Mad River Township. This merger resulted in the creation of several separated sections of the city in parts of the township that had experienced annexations by Dayton, Huber Heights and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. There are a total of six disconnected sections of the city.

The city has four major parks, each with different activities for every season of the year, with organized sports such as baseball, softball, soccer or football, swing sets to play on and plenty of open space for leisurely walks to enjoy the scenery.

Mean travel time to work for residents of Riverside is 17.6 minutes. Median rent is $759, and median selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,100.

PREBLE COUNTY

Preble County was formed in 1808 from portions of Butler and Montgomery counties. The county covers more than 424 square miles with a population of 41,329. Preble is on the western border of Ohio, surrounded by Darke County to the north, Montgomery County to the east and Butler County to the south. Elevation across the county ranges from 837 feet in Camden Township to 1,240 feet in Jefferson Township.

For more information, go to www.prebco.org.

Planning Your Move

Wright Patterson Housing and Real Estate Planning Your Move

Relocating to a new home can be one of the most stressful situations in life. Whether moving across town or across the nation, preparation and organization can make all the difference. First, decide whether to use a professional moving company or make it a do-it-yourself (DIY) operation.

For a DIY move, consider distance, labor help and the costs to rent the moving van, gas, lodging during the move and insurance. A transportable storage unit can bridge a professional and DIY move. When the unit is delivered to your residence, you load and secure it for transport and then unload it at your new residence.

Whatever the method, be sure to obtain as many quotes as possible from professional movers, as well as cost estimates for a DIY move. Next, compare the costs for each type of move, factoring in the stress and physical exertion involved. Ask any company you are interested in for references and use them to inquire about reliability and customer service.

Regardless of which method you choose, the first step should be to inventory your personal belongings. The list, with photographs of any valuables, will be important for both insurance purposes and to help keep you organized during transit.

Plan for one full day to pack each room — though the kitchen and garage may take longer. Make a rough estimate of your packing schedule and then add 50 percent more time. It always takes longer than predicted to pack. Toss or donate unused items to lighten your load. Visit www.goodwill.org, www.salvationarmyusa.org or www.clothingdonations.org for locations near you or to arrange a pickup.

Pack for success:

  • Consider what you’re packing and control box weight. Books should go in small boxes while bedding can easily fill a larger box.
  • Wrap fragile items with cardboard dividers, tissue paper or air bubble wrapping.
  • Use bright colors when wrapping small items so they don’t get thrown out accidentally.
  • Use crumpled paper or newspaper to line the top and bottom of boxes.
  • Tape a copy of your inventory list to boxes to identify what’s inside and where it should go.

Buying Versus Renting

Wright Patterson Housing and Real Estate Buying Versus Renting

The decision to buy or rent is the most important step in your relocation process. Purchasing a home entails a long-term emotional and financial commitment with various pluses and minuses attached. Advantages include the possibility of building equity and the freedom to design and decorate your property or landscape. And don’t forget the tax benefits. Disadvantages include upkeep, property taxes and fluctuating property value.

Renting, on the other hand, makes moving easier and someone else maintains the property. Amenities such as laundry rooms, exercise rooms, swimming pools and tennis courts vary from one rental complex to another. The main disadvantage is loss of control over the residence. Some complexes, for example, restrict or prohibit pets and personal touches such as painting. And the landlord or property managers can also raise the rent with proper notice.

Before determining your best option, account for all of your needs, review your financial situation and research your options thoroughly.

Finding an Apartment

Wright Patterson Housing and Real Estate Finding an Apartment

Find local apartments listed in chamber of commerce membership directories, local newspaper classifieds, online or through referrals from family or friends. The Ohio State Bar Association’s Tenant/Landlord Rights and Obligations can be viewed at www.ohiobar.org/forpublic/resources/lawfactspamphlets/pages/lawfactspamphlet-11.aspx.

Be prepared when you meet with the leasing agent, property manager or owner. Bring a list of what you are looking for in a rental; it is important to be clear about your needs and to get all of your questions answered. You will also need to provide information and verification about your job, your income and your past rental history. Dress to make a good impression and treat the meeting like a job interview — be polite and arrive on time.

Before you decide to rent, inspect the apartment with the landlord. Look for the following problems:

  • Cracks, holes or damage in the floor, walls or ceiling.
  • Signs of leaking water, leaky fixtures or water damage.
  • Any signs of mold or pests.
  • Lack of hot water.
  • Inadequate heating or air conditioning.

Use a written checklist with the landlord to document the condition of the rental before you move in, and keep a copy of the completed checklist to use when you move out.

Buying a Home

Wright Patterson Housing and Real Estate Buying a Home

Buying a home is a complex process and, as the recent housing crisis demonstrated, requires a thorough education on the part of the buyer. First, fully understand your financial position — credit score, available savings, monthly income and expenditures. Subtracting your expenditures from your income, for instance, will yield the amount you can afford for housing.

Be sure to account for all insurance costs associated with owning a home, possible homeowner association fees and property taxes in your monthly expenditures. Overall, loan rules changed in 2015, but according to www.ginniemae.gov (Government National Mortgage Association) and www.homebuyinginstitute.com (the Home Buying Institute) loan programs continue to vary on the percentage of your income that can be used for housing-related expenses. Lenders balance debt against income to decide if an applicant will be able to repay a loan. Most conventional loans require borrowers to have no more than 43 percent total monthly debt versus their total monthly income, though there are exceptions, such as for those with significant savings. The Federal Housing Administration has a two-tier qualifying system: FHA sets its top thresholds at 31 percent front-end debt (housing expenses as a percentage of income) and 43 percent back-end debt (all debt as a percentage of income) for a 31/43 qualifying ratio. Like commercial lenders, Veterans Affairs combines front-end and back-end debt for a 41 percent limit against income.

Next, research the different types of home loans to determine the right fit for your financial situation and discuss your options with a lending professional. Lenders are diverse today, and not all homebuyers obtain their mortgage loans through their banks and credit unions. For example, you may choose to work with an internet lender, a mortgage broker, a homebuilder or a real estate agency lender. To determine which lender is best for you, get recommendations from friends and family members and check credentials as well as Better Business Bureau ratings.

A preapproved loan before starting your search for a home can determine your spending limits and signal any potential issues in the way of receiving a loan. For any home loan application, the mortgage company will order a credit report, so it may be good to get a free report in advance to determine your credit status and make sure the report contains no erroneous information.

There are three ways to order your free annual report from one or all of the national consumer reporting companies: Visit www.annualcreditreport.com and complete and submit the request form online; call toll free 877-322-8228; or download and complete the Annual Credit Report Request Form and mail it to: Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. For more information, visit www.consumer.ftc.gov/topics/credit-and-loans.

Knowing your monthly budget and the amount of your loan are invaluable during the next phase, especially finding the answers to questions before the hunt for a home begins.

First, determine your home preferences. Does a single-family house, condo, town house or duplex best fit your needs and budget? Do you prefer a new home, an existing home or to build one? Though new homes generally cost more, existing homes may come with maintenance issues and renovation costs. How many bedrooms and bathrooms would you like? Do you want an attached garage? Will you live in the city, a suburb or in the country? How close to work, school, shopping or public transportation do you want to be? Answers to these questions will greatly assist your search and the next stage — hiring a real estate agent.

The ideal agent will help find your ideal home and guide you through the purchase process. First, interview potential candidates to ensure they understand your needs, know your homebuying and neighborhood preferences, and are readily accessible.

Good luck and happy hunting!

Local Programs

The HomeOwnership Center of Greater Dayton provides housing programs and incentives to help residents with first-time homebuying and down payment assistance. The center also helps homeowners save their current homes from foreclosure. For more information, visit www.homeownershipdayton.org or contact the HomeOwnership Center of Greater Dayton at ContactUs@hocgd.org or 937-853-1600.

The Housing Source is committed to improving the Montgomery County community by offering affordable housing and economic programs for residents. See homes currently for sale at www.thehousingsource.org. Call 937-531-7046 for more information.

State Programs

Ohio provides housing programs and incentives to help residents with home ownership. For more information, visit http://portal.hud.gov and select Ohio from the “State Info” drop-down menu.

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