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Old 06-02-2020, 03:07 AM
 
3 posts, read 1,613 times
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Hello
My husband accepted a job in Portsmouth and we will be relocating this summer from overseas. It’s going to be hard to recon a town in person so hopefully this forum will help. We have 4 school aged boys so schools are very important as well as town and school sports. We would like a town with a nice community feel that also has shops and restaurants. After doing some research on my own, I noticed a lot of towns are very small with regional schools. I would like to stay away from these types of towns if possible. My husband would like to keep the commute under an hour and take advantage of income tax free New Hampshire! Our budget is around 650,000 for around a 3,000 sq ft house or more. Any suggestions would be very helpful- thank you!
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Old 06-02-2020, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Low-tax NH & TN
199 posts, read 149,350 times
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Quote:
After doing some research on my own, I noticed a lot of towns are very small with regional schools. I would like to stay away from these types of towns if possible.
Just curious why you want to stay away from these towns.
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Old 06-03-2020, 06:29 AM
 
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Levi.Dunn

I would prefer a bigger town because I want to have everything such as the schools, restaurants, and shops all in the same town where I am living. Maybe I am wrong but I feel that the bigger towns have more of a "community" feel? Could you offer me some insight! I could be totally off on this.....
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Old 06-03-2020, 06:40 AM
 
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Portsmouth, Exeter and Dover are probably your best bets. Durham is a nice college town though not much retail right there, you can drive to the other 3 for restaurants and shopping.

Good luck
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Old 06-03-2020, 07:02 AM
 
1,134 posts, read 2,362,425 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andreagund View Post
Levi.Dunn

I would prefer a bigger town because I want to have everything such as the schools, restaurants, and shops all in the same town where I am living. Maybe I am wrong but I feel that the bigger towns have more of a "community" feel? Could you offer me some insight! I could be totally off on this.....
I would think a bigger town would have less of a community feel... There are tons of nice towns in the seacoast that fit your budget and requirements tho. North Hampton, Rye, Exeter, Portsmouth, etc

Im not sure about the schools so i apologize in advance if those are regional.
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Old 06-03-2020, 07:28 AM
 
Location: Seacoast NH
1,490 posts, read 611,737 times
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Originally Posted by chris410 View Post
I would think a bigger town would have less of a community feel... There are tons of nice towns in the seacoast that fit your budget and requirements tho. North Hampton, Rye, Exeter, Portsmouth, etc

Im not sure about the schools so i apologize in advance if those are regional.



Of the towns you listed, only Exeter and Portsmouth have their own high schools. For Exeter, it includes students from Stratham, Newfields, East Kingston, Brentwoor, etc (at least it did when I went there). Portsmouth includes students from Rye, Greenland, Newington and New Castle.


Rye has an elementary and middle school and I believe North Hampton has both as well. For high school, North Hampton goes to Winnicunnet in Hampton.


Also, of the 4 towns listed, I've lived in 3 of them. I grew up in Exeter when it was a lot smaller than it is now. Back then, what's now Portsmouth Avenue had nothing on it. They were just building the Dunkin Donuts. Things have changed a bit.


Portsmouth is good for the social scene but you'd have a hard time finding a property with any good amount of land. High school also has more of a drug problem now then when my son graduated in 2010.


Rye was the best place for raising kids. They can (and do) still play outside, ride bikes and skateboards, nice recreation department fields for ball games and the beach right down the street. No traffic lights but also no street lights or sidewalks. Nice library and a few churches if that's your thing. A few good restaurants but Portsmouth is a 10 minute drive with traffice to get to the downtown area. Grocery store is in Portsmouth but still a 10 minute drive.


I also at one time lived in Dover for a few years. I won't comment much on it since it was so long ago but I did enjoy it. It's changed as much as Exeter has over the years but I haven't been to Dover for over 5 years now so maybe someone else can chime in on that.
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Old 06-03-2020, 08:15 AM
 
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Thank you for all of the information. I grew up in a town of 25k people in Fairfield County, CT which had extensive youth sports programs, a quaint New England village center with unique family owned restaurants and stores. The town also had a large state road with all the national brand box stores, I really had no reason to leave my town. Ultimately I guess I’m looking for a town that has it all, it’s own identity and amenities. I could be wrong since I haven’t been to sea coast area, but I just assume that all of the towns with poplilations under 10k people would not have these things?
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Old 06-03-2020, 08:18 AM
 
Location: North of Boston
3,543 posts, read 6,831,616 times
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Originally Posted by Andreagund View Post
Levi.Dunn

I would prefer a bigger town because I want to have everything...

What's your idea of a "bigger town"?

Even Portsmouth only has a population of 22,000 people; it is not even one of the 10 largest communities in NH. Dover, with a population of 31,000, is the largest town in the Seacoast region and the 5th largest community in the state.

I suspect Exeter, population 15,000, will offer most of what you are looking for.
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Old 06-03-2020, 09:31 AM
 
Location: Seacoast NH
1,490 posts, read 611,737 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andreagund View Post
Thank you for all of the information. I grew up in a town of 25k people in Fairfield County, CT which had extensive youth sports programs, a quaint New England village center with unique family owned restaurants and stores. The town also had a large state road with all the national brand box stores, I really had no reason to leave my town. Ultimately I guess I’m looking for a town that has it all, it’s own identity and amenities. I could be wrong since I haven’t been to sea coast area, but I just assume that all of the towns with poplilations under 10k people would not have these things?



Portsmouth does have everything - grocery stores, big box stores, etc. What's not directly in Portsmouth is right over the border into Newington - 2 malls, BJs, Home Depot, etc. Driving from Portsmouth to any of the surrounding towns is probably nothing like driving town to town in CT. You can get anything you need within a 10-15 minute drive (I'm going a little on the high end here because holiday traffic can add to the time.)


Every year they do a survey of the number of restaurant seats in Portsmouth. The most recent one shows that once again, there are more restaurant seats in the city than the population.


Personally, I'd rather live outside Portsmouth and travel in when I need something, particularly in the summer time when you have Market Square Day, Prescott Park Arts Festival, Chili Festival, Chowder Festival. Traffic downtown can be a bit much during those times.


You should really visit the area and check it out for yourself before making any decisions.
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