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Old 01-25-2013, 10:44 PM
 
11 posts, read 15,974 times
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We have narrowed our search to the cities of West Hartford, Farmington, Avon and Simsbury. From what I have read, they appear to be some of the most family friendly towns with good schools in the Greater Hartford area. We are moving from Denver and the whole process to very overwhelming over the internet, short of a few visits.

However, some of the threads I have been reading have raised some red flags as far as crime. They state that these cities are not necessarily safe as a whole. We are trying to stay at/under $2000 a month rent for a home, but dont know if the homes within the cities are in safe areas within each town. We are trying to plan to have a handful of houses we fly out to view and put a deposit down on one, but cant afford to make several trips.

  • Could someone please provide some insights into areas within these towns to focus/stay away from?
  • Which town you would rate as most family friendly with shopping and a sense of community?
  • In addition to above cities, what should we know about Windsor. Ive just discovered on my rental search, Windsor appears to give "More bang our buck" but we dont know much about this area.
FYI...We have a 4 year old in Preschool, 1 year old and my husband works from home except for business trips which he must have access to the airport.

Thank you!
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:53 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
1,048 posts, read 1,303,704 times
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Every area of Farmington, Avon, and Simsbury is safe. A small portion of West Hartford in the southeast corner should be avoided. Stay away from Windsor if education is important to you.
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Old 01-26-2013, 10:39 AM
 
Location: Woburn, MA / W. Hartford, CT
2,068 posts, read 2,335,113 times
Reputation: 896
Quote:
Originally Posted by PuttingDownRoots35 View Post
We have narrowed our search to the cities of West Hartford, Farmington, Avon and Simsbury. From what I have read, they appear to be some of the most family friendly towns with good schools in the Greater Hartford area. We are moving from Denver and the whole process to very overwhelming over the internet, short of a few visits.

However, some of the threads I have been reading have raised some red flags as far as crime. They state that these cities are not necessarily safe as a whole. We are trying to stay at/under $2000 a month rent for a home, but dont know if the homes within the cities are in safe areas within each town. We are trying to plan to have a handful of houses we fly out to view and put a deposit down on one, but cant afford to make several trips.

  • Could someone please provide some insights into areas within these towns to focus/stay away from?
  • Which town you would rate as most family friendly with shopping and a sense of community?
  • In addition to above cities, what should we know about Windsor. Ive just discovered on my rental search, Windsor appears to give "More bang our buck" but we dont know much about this area.
FYI...We have a 4 year old in Preschool, 1 year old and my husband works from home except for business trips which he must have access to the airport.

Thank you!
Wow, not sure which threads you're reading...but NONE of these towns is considered remotely unsafe!

To your second question, I may be biased but would strongly advocate West Hartford (family-friendly, lots of shopping, and sense of community). Second would be Simsbury. Avon & Farmington have a very rural feel and no real town centers.

Finally, I live in WH and fly out of BDL a lot...there is no problem with quick access unless you live south of I-84. Good luck with the move!
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:09 PM
 
11 posts, read 15,974 times
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Thank you! It make me feel more comfortable to here some real life experience with the areas. I have seen some "updates" from people who made the move. They stated that they were taken back by how you could be in a good area and how quickly it turn be bad. Someone said that you couldnt just pick a city and move to it, which raised some concerns. Hmm...good to know about the "rural feel." I love the country side but would also like to have quick access to shopping with my little ones.
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:20 PM
 
Location: Woburn, MA / W. Hartford, CT
2,068 posts, read 2,335,113 times
Reputation: 896
Quote:
Originally Posted by PuttingDownRoots35 View Post
Thank you! It make me feel more comfortable to here some real life experience with the areas. I have seen some "updates" from people who made the move. They stated that they were taken back by how you could be in a good area and how quickly it turn be bad. Someone said that you couldnt just pick a city and move to it, which raised some concerns. Hmm...good to know about the "rural feel." I love the country side but would also like to have quick access to shopping with my little ones.
For schools, you will not go wrong picking any of these towns. Regarding shopping--Don't get me wrong...Avon/Canton does have a lot of strip malls and big box centers, but it's literally all along one semi-highway (44). Simsbury has a very nice town center and holds a bike-friendly designation, but you will likely need to go to Avon for shopping. Farmington probably has the least shopping within its borders...you would need to go to Bristol or West Hartford.

Last--the bad areas in the city of Hartford are fairly well-known, and locals know how to avoid them.

Last edited by htfdcolt; 01-26-2013 at 05:21 PM.. Reason: mistake
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:35 PM
 
Location: Ubique
4,096 posts, read 2,966,501 times
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These are the upscale towns in the Greater Hartford area. CT towns are not spread out like the ones in CO. From Avon, for example, in about 15 minutes you can be in the middle of ghetto if you wanted to, but yet these areas feel so far away. These towns are white-collar solid towns, plenty of lawyers, doctors, IBM-ers, architects and the like live there. Their public schools are some of the best in the state. Plenty of shopping, from antiques to large malls (by CT standards), in 10-15 minutes. There are farms also in these towns, so they have a great mix of suburban and rural.
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Old 01-26-2013, 08:56 PM
 
Location: Coastal Connecticut
14,842 posts, read 18,116,544 times
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I'd add Glastonbury to the mix.
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Old 01-26-2013, 09:32 PM
 
Location: New Haven, CT
1,033 posts, read 3,262,084 times
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Theyre good places, Windsor was the first settlement in CT I think....

But your kid is going to be completely miserable. Its not like you could walk next door or down the street to a friends house in any of those places. You need a car to get around.
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Old 01-27-2013, 11:41 AM
 
11 posts, read 15,974 times
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Thanks everyone. Looks like we are heavily leaning towards West Hartford. Weve down a few "drives" down these cities on google maps. Of course, there is no sub for a real trip, which we plan to make in about about a month. Rentals seem a little hard to come by, especially since a lot of them appear to be in the SE corner of West Hartford. Could anyone suggest a "line" if that is possible to not look pass. It appears 84 cuts thru the SE corner, but then it also looks like Target, the mall and some shopping are close to that area more to the south side. My preschooler just got the "ok" that he is caught up and over his speech delay, which is why he has already been in Prek for a year. He loves it and interacting with his little friends. So, NewHavensFinest comment about being miserable weighs on me. I think the more kids around, the better he will adjust.
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Old 01-27-2013, 12:36 PM
 
Location: OH>IL>CO>CT
4,801 posts, read 7,614,407 times
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As someone who moved to Farmington from Denver 18 months ago (retired, living with daughter's family), a few observations:

Any of the towns you mentioned will be fine. Re WH, yes, avoid areas south of I-84 and east of, say, Quaker Lane. The Westfarms mall is a very safe shopping area. WH is a lot like Boulder, except it does border on the City of Hartford. (Picture Boulder where Lakewood is.). WH has a town center (Blue Back Sq) even larger than the Pearl St. area.

Avon & Simsbury would compare to Lafayette or Louisville. Each with an "old town" center.

Farmington would compare to Broomfield. Bedroom community, no real town center, excellent schools.

Most SF homes are on large wooded lots. What would be hard to find are the typical Denver area tract homes on smallish lots. (No Highlands Ranch-type areas) Streets and roads wind all over the map. But everything is closer together. Around here they think driving over 15 minutes any where is a "long trip".

Good Luck in your search.
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