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Old 10-02-2008, 11:24 AM
 
Location: Florida
7 posts, read 8,365 times
Reputation: 11
Default Looking to move

Hello Everyone! First time poster here with a question all the New Englanders.(Im sorry I sure you guys get this question all the time, but any help would be appreciated)


Its just me and the wife and we are looking to move to Vermont, Maine, or New Hampshire. We are a young couple looking to start a family up there. We are currently located in Jacksonville, FL. And we can handle the extreme cold. We looking to buy a some land and build house. Which state would be most affordable for that? We like the slower-paced lifestyle and would like a small town but be atleast 40-45 minutes away from a larger city. We enjoy the mountains and ocean so both inland or coastal would be fine.

In New Hampsire we are looking at the Laconia area, in Vermont we are looking at the Burlington Area, and in Maine we are looking at the Bangor area. Right now we are leaning towards Maine and are looking at the town of Ellsworth and Belfast. How far of a drive is it to Bangor? Hows Bar Harbor? And info would be helpful.
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Old 10-02-2008, 12:26 PM
 
Location: CO
1,389 posts, read 2,350,603 times
Reputation: 734
Start with this thread.

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Old 10-02-2008, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Maine
7,978 posts, read 10,170,597 times
Reputation: 6512
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjkrc00 View Post
In New Hampsire we are looking at the Laconia area, in Vermont we are looking at the Burlington Area, and in Maine we are looking at the Bangor area. Right now we are leaning towards Maine and are looking at the town of Ellsworth and Belfast. How far of a drive is it to Bangor? Hows Bar Harbor? And info would be helpful.
We looked at both the Laconia and Burlington areas when we were looking to move.

The Laconia area is beautiful country, but honestly, I didn't care for some of the towns around the area. It was very busy, very touristy, and even some of the smaller towns had surprisingly high crime rates. As far as cities in that part of NH, we really liked Concord a lot.

Burlington, VT. Wow. What gorgeous country. But rather expensive, and also a rather high crime area --- for New England; compared to Jacksonville, it's probably nothing. In that part of the country, we actually liked the towns across the lake in upstate NY better than that part of VT.

Bangor is nice. Too "city" for me, because I prefer small towns or country, but as cities go, it's quite nice. And I really like a lot of the smaller towns surrounding Bangor.

Ellsworth is about a half hour from Bangor. The other towns you mentioned a bit farther.

The best advice I can give you: VISIT FIRST. We did. We did a bunch of research before coming and made a list of towns in Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, and upstate New York where we thought we'd like. The visit was very enlightening. Towns we knew we were going to love, we ended up not liking very much. Towns we were a little dubious about, we ended up really liking. And the place we ended up moving (Brunswick, ME) was not a place we had even initially considered.

As far as affordability, there are pros and cons. New Hampshire has the lowest overall taxes. No sales tax. No state income tax. But high property taxes. Overall, I think Maine probably has the highest taxes, with Vermont falling in between the two. But in my opinion, the quality of life in Maine is worth the higher cost of living. It really is the way life should be.

That being said, one man's feast is another man's poison. Things I love about Maine, you might hate. Things I disliked about New Hampshire, you might love.

So it's definitely worth your time and money to visit first.
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Old 10-03-2008, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Florida
7 posts, read 8,365 times
Reputation: 11
We are planning on visiting in a little over a month. We will only be up there about a week so we want to narrow our options down before we go up. I think we narrowed out Vermont, we are just going to focus on New Hampshire and Maine when we go up there. Do you know anything about northern New Hampshire?

There are alot of places we want to see when we go to Maine. There seem like a lot of towns are really nice places to live. Right now we like Ellsworth, Stockton Springs, Winterport, Belfast, Saco, Greenville, Farmington. Does anybody have any suggestions on some other towns to visit in Maine? Any info would be appreciated! Thanks!

Oh and we are very Christmasy kind of people. Do you mainers get into Christmas time at all? Its a weird question I know. I was just curious. Down here in Florida nobody really gets into Christmas. Is there any towns that get a little more into Christmas time then other towns? If so, which ones?

Mark S- What was it about Brunswick that made you choose that town? Thanks for all of your info!
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Old 10-04-2008, 06:30 AM
 
Location: maine
352 posts, read 381,142 times
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Regarding Christmas...these small towns on the southern coast really get into it. Ogunquit has Christmas Prelude, Kennenbunkport has Christmas by the Sea, Cape Porpoise has Santa coming to town on a lobster boat, the Nubble is outlined in Christmas lights, it's beautiful. It's really neat, these celebrations usually last a week or so, obviously all in December.
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Old 10-04-2008, 10:50 AM
 
Location: Maine
7,978 posts, read 10,170,597 times
Reputation: 6512
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjkrc00 View Post
Do you know anything about northern New Hampshire?
It's gorgeous country. Not much up there though. The one town where we spent some time was Berlin. I thought it was one of the nastiest towns in New England. Didn't like it at all.

Littleton is quite nice, if a bit touristy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tjkrc00 View Post
Mark S- What was it about Brunswick that made you choose that town? Thanks for all of your info!
If it were up to me, we'd be in the boonies. But our kids had been city kids for 10 years, and they were a little afraid we were going all Green Acres on them. So we compromised and looked at small towns.

Brunswick has great schools and a lot of activities for the kids. It has one of the best youth sports programs in the country. But it's also a very artsy town. Lots of theater, art shops, music, and it's the home of Bowdoin college. We're only a half-hour from Portland if we need a city for any reason. And if we ever get in the mood for big city, Boston is only a few hours away.

I also really like it that there is a good combination of traditional blue-collar working families and artsy-fartsy liberal types. Brunswick isn't all red, nor is it all blue, but a good combination of both.

Brunswick is safe. It itsn't utopia. There are definitely some neighborhoods where I wouldn't want to live. But we have no real " 'hoods," and there aren't gangs in the local schools. We can feel safe leaving the older kids home alone if we have to run a quick errand, and that was something we could never do in Washington State.

The downside is that with BNAS closing, the local economy is taking quite a hit. It isn't going to kill the town or anything, but I think we're in for a few rough years. One of the local bookstores just closed, and another major business that has been a staple of the town for years just announced they aren't renewing their lease on Maine Street.

As for Christmas, it's great in Brunswick. Maine Street decorates, and in winters where there is enough cold and snow (no lack of it last year!) the town floods the village green and it freezes over into a downtown ice-skating park.
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Pittsfield, Maine
160 posts, read 236,033 times
Reputation: 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjkrc00 View Post
There are alot of places we want to see when we go to Maine. There seem like a lot of towns are really nice places to live. Right now we like Ellsworth, Stockton Springs, Winterport, Belfast, Saco, Greenville, Farmington. Does anybody have any suggestions on some other towns to visit in Maine? Any info would be appreciated! Thanks!
My wife and I just moved to Pittsfield, Maine (30 miles south of Bangor) from Pennsylvania in July. Our house sold fairly quickly so we had to rent a house in Brewer, which is next to Bangor, while we looked for a permanent location. We looked at Orono, Old Town and surrounding areas as well areas west of 95 (Skowhegan, Dover-Foxcroft, etc.) but we kept coming back to Pittsfield. It is a small town of around 4,000 with the MCI school, a small movie theater, and just the charm of a smalltown with wonderful people. We LOVE it here and know we made the right choice.

As others have said, you really need to come up here and do day trips into different areas. You will know it when you see it.
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Old 10-05-2008, 05:35 PM
 
Location: St. Augustine, FL
227 posts, read 240,049 times
Reputation: 293
Its just me and the wife and we are looking to move to Vermont, Maine, or New Hampshire. We are a young couple looking to start a family up there. We are currently located in Jacksonville, FL. And we can handle the extreme cold.

That wasn't meant to run together, was it?

We looking to buy a some land and build house. Which state would be most affordable for that? We like the slower-paced lifestyle and would like a small town but be atleast 40-45 minutes away from a larger city.

I was born and raised in Maine but currently live 50 miles south of Jacksonville. Compared to Jax, I would say that nearly anywhere in those states would be slower paced, including the larger cities. You have way too much territory to cover in a week! Even if you can narrow down your choices, you'll still need a lot more time. Too bad you aren't there now for leaf peapin'. No, wait...too bad I'm not there now for leaf peapin'.
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Old 10-06-2008, 06:06 AM
 
Location: Northern Maine
5,990 posts, read 7,380,891 times
Reputation: 3882
Lynn & Russ, Did you buy or start a restaurant?
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