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Northeastern Pennsylvania Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, Pocono area
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Old 01-14-2009, 01:01 PM
 
Location: AL resident in PA at every oportunity
173 posts, read 375,626 times
Reputation: 141
Default Affluent Areas of NEPA

I've followed this forum for a long time and know a little about the economic structure of some of NEPA's towns. I live in Alabama, but have familiy in PA and visit several times a year. After years of begging my husband to move (I LOVE PA!) I may get my wish in a couple of years when my youngest graduates high school. I'm a self-employed wedding and location portrait photographer. In Birmingham, most of my portait clients are young families with a six figure household income. Million dollar homes are common is some areas of Birmingham. When I move, I will need to photograph in a similar economically affuent location. Where is that in NEPA?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 01-14-2009, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Dallas, PA
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The Back Mountain area is considered "affluent" (about 15 mins. north of Wilkes Barre) My town especially I have heard referred to as such (Dallas), but I'm not one of those affluent residents, unfortunately.
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Old 01-14-2009, 01:19 PM
 
Location: AL resident in PA at every oportunity
173 posts, read 375,626 times
Reputation: 141
Thanks for your response.

While I'm not wealthy and I prefer living in the country, I'm glad to know there's a 'Dallas' type of community in NEPA. It's vital to the economy, including my economy
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Old 01-14-2009, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
26,087 posts, read 45,298,359 times
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Hello, RebelPhotog!

Welcome in advance to NEPA. I'm guessing much of your business in Greater Birmingham probably comes from Mountain Brook. Overall our area is economically-depressed, but the affluent tend to have segregated themselves into their own select pockets of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area.
  • The Abingtons
  • Back Mountain
  • Glenmaura
  • Greater Pittston
  • Mountain Top
  • North Pocono

If you are looking to open up a studio, I might recommend doing a search online for "Pittston Crossings," which is a new suburban shopping center being developed in the Pittston area in 2010. It will offer your business visibility from I-81, I-476, and Route 315, and you'll only be (at most) 20-25-minutes from any of those areas I listed above. While I'm not thrilled to be living here in the Pittston area, I can't argue the fact that you will not find a more convenient part of our area to settle down in, being that we are equidistant from our region's two core cities of Scranton and Wilkes-Barre. Positioning an office/studio here would be a good bet if you want a reasonable commute to any of these areas.

The Back Mountain, with a population of 35,000, is generally an upper-middle-class area to the northwest of Wilkes-Barre. Here you'll find a blend of mobile homes and rural homesteads with people who are merely middle-class or even lower-middle-class as well as hundreds of higher-end homes in dozens of upscale suburban subdivisions that tend to branch off of a few select arteries (Sutton Road and Manor Drive come to mind). Here are some photos I have taken of that area:











Glenmaura is a major sprawling subdivision of hundreds of executive-style homes and town houses in the borough of Moosic. It is located just off of I-81 and is only minutes south of Scranton. Here is the link to their web site: Glenmaura...An Exceptional Residential Community! Here are some images I have captured for you of parts of the subdivision from satellite mapping:










The Abingtons are a growing network of suburbs to the immediate northwest of Scranton. Some communities here include Clarks Summit, Clarks Green, Waverly, Dalton, Chinchilla, South Abington Township, and Glenburn. Clarks Summit is the "town proper" of the area with its own small downtown area with a lot of upscale-oriented businesses. A few miles to the north is Waverly, which reminds me of a small Vermont village with its brick community house, small white churches, town green, deli, general store, etc.

Mountain Top, North Pocono, and Greater Pittston are similar in nature. There are plenty of upscale subdivision in each of these three areas, and some of the more affluent communities within them include Roaring Brook Township, Mt. Cobb, Laflin, Yatesville, Jenkins Township, Pittston Township, West Pittston, and Nuangola.
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Old 01-14-2009, 01:46 PM
 
Location: AL resident in PA at every oportunity
173 posts, read 375,626 times
Reputation: 141
ScrannBarre, thank you for your response and your welcome. This is exactly what I'm looking for. I appreciate you taking the time to post the pix.

I'm not interested in opening a studio, as of yet. That may change, but I'm morally opposed to studio portraits I love natural light and I tend to be a purist in that respect. I have a home office for the business side of things and shoot only on location.

You're familiar with Mtn. Brook? That is an older neighborhood in B'ham and I work there often. There are newer areas here that are more progressive than Mtn Brook.

I do drive throughout NEPA occasionally, but not enough to see everything I want to see and would have never found these locations on my limited visits.
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Old 01-14-2009, 09:16 PM
 
Location: Dallas, PA, but spent time in 49 of the 50 states
62 posts, read 159,572 times
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I really wouldnt call any areas in NEPA affluent by the usual term compared to other parts of the country. Sure there are some nice houses scattered around, but its not like other areas where there are entire affluent neighborhoods that straddle the traditional line between upper class and wealthy.

Honestly, most of the houses just stick out like a sore thumb. On the other hand, there are plenty of well educated people who live in nice homes and live normal lives, but if a company was doing a marketing study on which affluent areas to advertise, they would probably be skipping over NEPA. and for the recod...I like it that way.

On the flip side however, many people will spend amazing amounts of money on their children that they dont really have...so.....
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Old 01-14-2009, 10:14 PM
 
Location: wilkes-barre
1,974 posts, read 3,244,894 times
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Harvey's Lake has some of the most impressive homes that I've seen around here.
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Old 01-15-2009, 06:09 PM
 
Location: NEPA
915 posts, read 2,030,155 times
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RebelPhotog --- in this area having money is not necessarily synonymous with affluent/upscale !
This is not a classy area, most think big homes, fancy cars puts them in that class -- it doesn't !
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Old 01-15-2009, 07:40 PM
 
Location: AL resident in PA at every oportunity
173 posts, read 375,626 times
Reputation: 141
I agree that impressive homes aren't the determining factor in whether an area is affluent. I have had customers who looked as though they have a lot of money - large, expensive house with lavish furnishings, luxury vehicles, extensive spending - but they were up to their eyeballs in debt and couldn't afford to pay me $100 for a print they just had to have. In fact, I was told a few years ago by a rep for the power company that the most of the homes that have their power shut off for non-payment is on the upscale end of the county. I would have thought it to be in the poorer rural areas of my county that are dotted with rundown homes. So, yes, I do understand that looking as though you have money and actually having it are two very different things.

I will likely be moving to NWPA to care for a family member, but I do plan to buy or build a cabin in the mountains near Scranton and my husband's family already has a cabin near there. I love my job and I love the Endless Mountains, so I hope to be able to work a little while I'm there. Since NEPA will not be my primary targeted client base, I need only a small pool of clients there. I still have a lot of research to do in order to determine locate potential clients in PA. Pittsburgh is Birmingham's sister city and so far, it seems to be the best location for me to work.
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Old 01-16-2009, 07:46 AM
 
Location: Dallas, PA
1,422 posts, read 2,249,474 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nkotb View Post
RebelPhotog --- in this area having money is not necessarily synonymous with affluent/upscale !
This is not a classy area, most think big homes, fancy cars puts them in that class -- it doesn't !
This is very true. Most of our highest net worth clients (I work at an investment firm) live in the most modest homes. When you think about it, it makes sense...the people with the most money have it because they're wise in how they spend it! They don't spend it on huge lavish houses. They're also not the best dressed nor do they drive the flashy cars. And because of this...they're our richest clients!
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