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Old 06-08-2017, 02:47 PM
 
Location: Sprin
1 posts, read 1,118 times
Reputation: 17

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My family and I will be relocating to New Hampshire as my husband's job will be transferring to Manchester. I'm thrilled - I fell in love with Maine many years ago and ever since have always dreamt of moving to New England. Although I have never been to NH, my husband and I are planning a trip in a few months to visit. As such, I'm trying to compile a list of towns to visit. I have done research and have come across Amherst, Hollis, Mt. Vernon, Exeter, Goffstown, Hancock, Milford and Peterborough, as well as several other towns. As you can imagine, my head is spinning. I'm hoping for insight from those of you that know more about the area to narrow down my list.

We're looking for a small or small town feel, friendly, close-knit community in a quintessential, historic New England town. We love fall and Christmas, so decorations, festivals and celebrations would be an added perk. For any Gilmore Girls fans, think Stars Hollow in NH. A better example yet would be Norman Rockwell.

We are looking to be within a 1 hour commute of Manchester. Although we would prefer a more affordable area, we understand it's relative. We're from upstate NY, and anything and everything is taxed here, which is why we can't wait to escape. For example, we're used to paying $6k in property taxes on our $150k home. We're hoping to spend no more than $300,000 on a home and if possible we would like a few acres of land. We would be okay living a few minutes outside of town, preferably no more than 5-10 minutes.

Our son will be starting school in a few years, so a good school system is extremely important to us. Access to an affordable, private school could also be an alternative.

In regards to activities, we are outdoor enthusiasts. We enjoy spending the day on the lake, boating, swimming and fishing. We also appreciate a good swimming hole. I must admit - although I find the coast beautiful, I am terrified of the ocean. Only fresh water swimming for this gal

Thank you all in advance for any input you can provide - I look forward to reading your responses!
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Old 06-08-2017, 06:50 PM
 
Location: West Madison^WMHT
3,173 posts, read 2,742,027 times
Reputation: 3822
Post You'll find that housing prices are higher in towns near the border with Massachusetts.

Despite their proximity to Massacuhsetts, I like Hollis, Amherst, Milford & Mont Vernon. You could visit all 4 in one day, get a feel for how they differ. They each have at least one "great pond" (body of water with at least some public access).

When you say "outside of town", what are you thinking of as "town"? For example, Mont Vernon has little to the 'town" part, pretty much just a speed trap on Rt. 13 with a general store and the usual town services buildings (fire station, etc). Goffstown, being closer to Manchester, is more like a traditional suburban small town with both a town center and a traffic-laden shopping strip.

You may want to start by researching school rankings, as that may be the biggest factor in choosing one town over another. If you want a few wooded acres, you'll probably want to look further from Manchester and also away from the border and interstate.

Last edited by Nonesuch; 06-08-2017 at 07:04 PM..
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:32 PM
 
592 posts, read 1,397,027 times
Reputation: 220
There is no way you are going to find a few acres and a home for 300k in the areas you mentioned. I say that because we looked for homes for the last year in the areas you mentioned and can't find anything like that unless it's a fixer upper and I've seen nothing for under 350-375k and it's slim pickings. Home prices have just sky rocketed and we missed the sweet spot a few years ago. Homes that are priced right are going in days and always over asking. Very disheartening. Best of Luck and I hope you find what you're looking for.
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Old 06-09-2017, 08:03 AM
 
Location: New Hampshire
445 posts, read 290,935 times
Reputation: 563
300k will be plenty if you drive north of Manchester. You said "within an hour," and north 50 minutes to 1hr 10 minutes there are plenty of options.

Keep in mind that NH is constantly ranked one of the safest states in the U.S. and ranks fairly good with education too. I see people go nuts over school like if they don't get into Oyster River or Hollis-Brookline that they are stuck with inner-city Detroit when that is just not the case.
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Old 06-09-2017, 10:46 AM
 
Location: Englewood, FL
1,423 posts, read 1,410,967 times
Reputation: 886
Yeah, it's going to be tough finding anything under $300K, as these houses are scooped up the minute that they are put on the market. I would also suggest Bedford, as it has the best school system in NH. Good luck in your search.
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Old 06-09-2017, 11:51 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
4,541 posts, read 11,745,815 times
Reputation: 4107
How exciting for your family! As I don't want to be accused of painting New Hampshire with a large, rosy brush, I'll jump right into what you may consider 'the bad' news': There are towns on your list below where $300k is not even an entry point, much less on a few acres of land. We are in the midst of a strong seller's market, with a continuing lack of inventory in certain areas. That said, there ARE areas where you can certainly find a home in that price range. I'll address your list of town names with simple yes/no/maybe, then add my own suggestions

Amherst: no
Hollis: no
Mont (not Mount or Mt.) Vernon: maybe but doubtful
Exeter: no
Goffstown: maybe
Hancock: probably
Milford: probably
Peterborough: maybe

Just for giggles, I did a quick MLS search of the towns that you have listed, and found that there are 342 properties showing as ACTIVE.

Then I added in 300k as the max price, and it dropped to 92 total.
Then I specified Single Family Residential only, dropped to 52 total.
Specified 3+ bedrooms, dropped to 38 total
Specified 1+ acres, dropped to 16

Is there anything else I can add to the list? Thinking you'd like a garage?
Adding 1-car garage dropped to 13. Adding 2-car garage dropped it to 7.

The good news is that there are other towns that may work well for you. North or west of Manchester is generally going to be more house for the money (except for the most popular towns, some of which are on your list). Consider adding Bow, Dunbarton, Pembroke, Hooksett and Allenstown. Of these, Bow and Pembroke have the best school reputations. You know, you may even want to add Concord to your list. It's the state capital, but there are some wonderful neighborhoods in Concord, a super nice downtown, and you're closer to the lakes region for outdoor fun

Hope this is helpful. Having done the relo thing with my family WAY before the internet was useful for anything except chatrooms (we're talking 90s, AOL and dialup Internet days here) I can say that IF you can rent for awhile before buying, that would always be best. Many folks just find that their tolerance for winter and SMALL TOWNS with limited resources/amenities, etc. is much lower than they ever could have thought. You mentioned that you fell in love with Maine--and NH isn't all that much different in terms of weather, sunlight/day length, they are 2 very different states. I look forward to hearing about your visit when it gets closer to reality

Quote:
Originally Posted by RachelAnn87 View Post
My family and I will be relocating to New Hampshire as my husband's job will be transferring to Manchester. I'm thrilled - I fell in love with Maine many years ago and ever since have always dreamt of moving to New England. Although I have never been to NH, my husband and I are planning a trip in a few months to visit. As such, I'm trying to compile a list of towns to visit. I have done research and have come across Amherst, Hollis, Mt. Vernon, Exeter, Goffstown, Hancock, Milford and Peterborough, as well as several other towns. As you can imagine, my head is spinning. I'm hoping for insight from those of you that know more about the area to narrow down my list.

We're looking for a small or small town feel, friendly, close-knit community in a quintessential, historic New England town. We love fall and Christmas, so decorations, festivals and celebrations would be an added perk. For any Gilmore Girls fans, think Stars Hollow in NH. A better example yet would be Norman Rockwell.

We are looking to be within a 1 hour commute of Manchester. Although we would prefer a more affordable area, we understand it's relative. We're from upstate NY, and anything and everything is taxed here, which is why we can't wait to escape. For example, we're used to paying $6k in property taxes on our $150k home. We're hoping to spend no more than $300,000 on a home and if possible we would like a few acres of land. We would be okay living a few minutes outside of town, preferably no more than 5-10 minutes.

Our son will be starting school in a few years, so a good school system is extremely important to us. Access to an affordable, private school could also be an alternative.

In regards to activities, we are outdoor enthusiasts. We enjoy spending the day on the lake, boating, swimming and fishing. We also appreciate a good swimming hole. I must admit - although I find the coast beautiful, I am terrified of the ocean. Only fresh water swimming for this gal

Thank you all in advance for any input you can provide - I look forward to reading your responses!
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Old 06-09-2017, 12:50 PM
 
45 posts, read 20,697 times
Reputation: 91
Hancock, Francestown, Marlborough are all somewhat picturesque towns.. not sure about the school systems however.
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Old 06-12-2017, 08:27 AM
 
Location: central NH
421 posts, read 192,949 times
Reputation: 277
I think you will find you pay the same if not more on property taxes than you already are. But OTOH you won't be paying income or sales tax (just "prepared foods" tax, and booze tax if so inclined). So it may be a wash.

I work in S. Manchester (by the airport) and my commute is under an hour. I'm out I89 way; depending upon how far away from the highway you are, you could go out to even New London (although that would be pricey). As you come south a bit, Newbury and Bradford might work. Schools might not meet what you are looking for though. So you could try to aim closer to Bow or Concord; heck you could flip to the other side of I93 and look in Pembroke area, although again the schools may be an issue.

Maybe north of Concord a bit. Could always look at Zillow on one tab, then use google maps and determine what google thinks it will take to commute from said property. So as to get a feel for how far a drive a given community might have.
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:53 AM
 
592 posts, read 1,397,027 times
Reputation: 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by JStubak View Post
Norman Rockwell's been dead for 39 years.

You need to stop watching TV and deal with reality. There are no perfect small towns. In fact you're going to find that any small town you move to has it's fair share of a$$^013@ and sometimes they're on town boards and committees making your life miserable.

Oh and I looked up Stars Hollow. That was set in CT, not NH.

I'm not trying to be rude. It just seems that you have naive, unrealistic ideas about what you're going to find here.
I couldn't agree more with you!! I thought the same about the cute little towns and unfortunately reality knocked at my door.
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Old 06-14-2017, 07:47 PM
 
22 posts, read 15,609 times
Reputation: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by JStubak View Post
Norman Rockwell's been dead for 39 years.

You need to stop watching TV and deal with reality. There are no perfect small towns. In fact you're going to find that any small town you move to has it's fair share of a$$^013@ and sometimes they're on town boards and committees making your life miserable.

Oh and I looked up Stars Hollow. That was set in CT, not NH.

I'm not trying to be rude. It just seems that you have naive, unrealistic ideas about what you're going to find here.
Actually they shot the GG pilot in Unionville outside of Toronto -- and it's super charming. Just... you know... in Canada.
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