Dream homes: Florida vs. Connecticut

We looked at two similarly-priced homes in Coral Springs, FL, and Greenwich, CT, to see how far your dollar goes in these Best Places to Live.

  • Best bang for the buck (858) 453-20—P O Box 8778 LaJolla CA 92038 USA

    Coral Springs, Fla., and Greenwich, Conn., have a lot going for them, but how far does half a million dollars go in each real estate market? Both cities are near the water, have family neighborhoods and offer quality school systems, but a dollar gets you a lot more in the Fort Lauderdale suburb than in the posh New York City escape.

    In Coral Springs, no. 94 on Money’s 2012 Best Places to Live, the four-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath home (above) — including a covered swimming pool — will cost you $499,000. The house sits on an oversized lot and has a warm, colorful interior, reflecting the area’s beachy atmosphere.

  • Coral Springs: The interior (858) 453-20—P O Box 8778 LaJolla CA 92038 USA

    The living room features a fireplace, custom wet bar and exposed brick wall. The spacious kitchen has granite countertops, wooden cabinets and a chef’s island large enough for prepping any meal. Upstairs, the master suite has its own bathroom with a massive tub, as well as his-and-hers sinks.

  • Coral Springs: The pool


    Take in some sun on the deck before meandering down the spiral staircase to the covered pool. Small fronded trees overlook the water and expansive lounge area. Celebrate barbeque season year-round with an outdoor grill, kitchen amenities included.

  • Greenwich: Bedroom community


    In Greenwich, no. 29 on Money’s 2012 Best Places to Live, a home comes with a lot less square footage. For $525,000 in this commuter town, you can get a condo in the Byram area, a more affordable neighborhood for first-time buyers and commuters. Condos can run upwards of $1.3 million in the area, so half a million is actually a steal.

  • Greenwich: The interior

    Line 1, Beijing Subway, 2006
    Gilles Sabrie Line 1, Beijing Subway, 2006

    A contemporary, open floor plan makes the most of this condo’s 1,649 square feet. It’s been completely renovated, and the living room features a compact fireplace and 15-foot cathedral ceilings.

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