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Old 07-16-2010, 07:05 AM
 
161 posts, read 240,125 times
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In another thread I started (on a differing topic) someone posted this:

Stowe = The Park
Barre = Real Vermont
Woodstock = The Park
Rutland = Real Vermont

"You can usually find 'The Park' near ski areas (although not all of them) and some of the lake communities (again, not all of them). If your unsure if your in 'The Park' you can ask anyone you see with out of state plates on their car. They'll know although may act coy about answering out loud because its taboo to mention 'The Park' to the locals. If you do ask any locals they'll likely give you directions to Six Flags Great Adventure."

My husband and I are considering a job opportunity in Vermont, and want to find out as much as we can so that we make the right choice. We'd be working in the immediate Barre/Montpelier area, and would have to rent a house since we move every few years for reasons related to work - so it wouldn't be practical for us to buy. In some areas, that leaves us with poor living options and, in the past, we've turned down good jobs for that reason.

At present, we have a "commute" to work that takes less than five minutes. In some places where we've lived, we've had to commute 45 minutes or more (you know what that means in winter) and we don't ever want to go back to that. Living close to our place of work has changed our lives for the better in more ways than we could list. No amount of money could make up for the benefits of living down the street from our place of employment.

That being said, it seems as though the poster above is saying that we'd have to go back to a commute of at least 30 miles in order to find decent living accommodations. Am I reading this correctly? Are there no nice house rentals or pleasant places to live in the immediate area of Monepelier and Barre? If anyone can clarify, it will save us a lot of grief.
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Old 07-16-2010, 07:20 AM
 
Location: Rutland, VT
1,822 posts, read 4,528,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo129 View Post
Living close to our place of work has changed our lives for the better in more ways than we could list. No amount of money could make up for the benefits of living down the street from our place of employment.
This reflects my husband's & my experience completely! We both work primarily from home and this contributes vastly to joy in our lives. We live in Rutland, or in what you're calling "Real Vermont." We walk to nearly everything, except in this stinking hot weather: Grocery shopping, appointments, entertainment & recreation, etc. Before we bought our home 10+ years ago, we rented a very nice apartment in Rutland from which we also walked to nearly everything.

These days we are driving to go kayaking. This driving to recreate rubs me the wrong way, but so far the benefits outweigh my discomfort.


Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo129 View Post
That being said, it seems as though the poster above is saying that we'd have to go back to a commute of at least 30 miles in order to find decent living accommodations. Am I reading this correctly? Are there no nice house rentals or pleasant places to live in the immediate area of Monepelier and Barre? If anyone can clarify, it will save us a lot of grief.
I can't imagine this is true. I know people who have rented homes in the immediate area of Montpelier and Barre. I stayed in friend's a lovely old rented home right on the North Branch River in Montpelier. Each day I was there, I walked to & from the workshop I was attending.

Can you go to the Hunger Mountain Co-op in Montpelier? There are dozens of postings for rentals in Montpelier and nearby towns. There are probably rentals for Barre & Montpelier listed online as well, on Craigslist, et al.

If it were me, I'd also talk to a local real estate agent who will know more about rentals perhaps not listed widely.
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Old 07-16-2010, 07:29 AM
 
161 posts, read 240,125 times
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Thanks for the advice! We'll definitely check out the co-op for rental listings. We've looked at craigslist on line but have found very little in that part of Vermont. Our main concern at this point is that we'd have to accept the job and then look for housing - and, if we found nothing suitable, we'd be stuck. This is something that has happened to us a few times before, particularly in Maine where there just aren't many year round rentals to choose from - so few that you really couldn't be said to have a choice.

And I agree with you totally that, once you've experienced the joy of living close to work, you'll do almost anything not to go back. When I think of the thousands of hours we wasted just driving or sitting in traffic - hours that we now spend together doing things we choose to do - I can't imagine doing that again EVER.
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Old 07-16-2010, 07:52 AM
 
Location: Rutland, VT
1,822 posts, read 4,528,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo129 View Post
And I agree with you totally that, once you've experienced the joy of living close to work, you'll do almost anything not to go back. When I think of the thousands of hours we wasted just driving or sitting in traffic - hours that we now spend together doing things we choose to do - I can't imagine doing that again EVER.

Yes, yes, yes! Memory from years commuting in South Florida traffic: Arise at 5 am, make 16 oz of espresso, add to huge travel mug with creamy soy milk, insert straw, get in car and prepare to wait.

When I was living in southern NH and working in Keene, I had a gorgeous 30-minute commute with almost no traffic and I admit to enjoying it. Still, once I moved into downtown Keene and started walking or biking to work and everywhere else, I realized I'd struck gold -- or even platinum. Once I moved to Vermont, I did whatever was required to keep me working from home. I remain committed to that.

I've also noticed that when I do attend meetings and events for work, I actually appreciate getting out and driving around the state because it's an unusual opportunity, not a daily grind. I'm delighted to see my colleagues, a rare treat. Afterward, I'm always grateful to return to my home office.
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Old 07-16-2010, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Vermont
10,305 posts, read 11,212,063 times
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I've been a homeowner in Montpelier since 1983 and I think it's a great place to live.

I don't doubt that some grumpy Vermonters wouldn't hesitate to call Montpelier "the park" and Barre "real Vermont", but I'm not that interested in what they have to say.

I would say that there are significant differences between Montpelier and Barre, and that you'd want to be clear about what you want before you decide where to live. I can't imagine why you'd need to go thirty miles away from Montpelier to find a decent rental. There are rentals right in Montpelier and some of them are pretty decent. There are probably places you could find to rent in Middlesex, Plainfield, Marshfield, Northfield, or Waterbury, all of which are more like fifteen miles or less outside of Montpelier.

In addition to the food co-op, take a look at the Times Argus (http://http://www.timesargus.com/ - broken link), the World (http://http://www.vt-world.com/ - broken link), and Seven Days (http://http://www.7dvt.com/ - broken link)(although I don't know how much they advertise for central Vermont rentals there.
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Old 07-16-2010, 11:08 AM
 
161 posts, read 240,125 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackmccullough View Post
I've been a homeowner in Montpelier since 1983 and I think it's a great place to live.

I can't imagine why you'd need to go thirty miles away from Montpelier to find a decent rental. There are rentals right in Montpelier and some of them are pretty decent. There are probably places you could find to rent in Middlesex, Plainfield, Marshfield, Northfield, or Waterbury, all of which are more like fifteen miles or less outside of Montpelier.

In addition to the food co-op, take a look at the Times Argus (http://http://www.timesargus.com/ - broken link), the World (http://http://www.vt-world.com/ - broken link), and Seven Days (http://http://www.7dvt.com/ - broken link)(although I don't know how much they advertise for central Vermont rentals there.
I admit that, the more I look, the more dubious I become. "Decent" and "pretty decent" aren't very enthusiastic recommendations and sound a lot like "barely livable" to me. The Times/Argus had only five houses for rent. One was furnished, one was "rent to buy" and a third was a one bath house for $2250.00 plus all utilities paid by the tenant. We can afford to pay well, but not THAT well - especially not for a house with only one bathroom. The World had only three rentals; one was a single room to rent, one was a couple LOOKING for a rental, the third was a summer rental by the week. That leaves very few possibilities. Since, if we accept the job, we'd have to move quickly and rent something equally quickly, having only one or two possibilities at most means that we would effectively have no choice at all. We'd have to take what we could get, which might be something very unsuitable for us. That's a position we've been in before, and won't consider again. The fact that there are "probably" places we could rent farther away is not something we'd want to rely on. We might very well like Montpelier very much, and it may be a great place to live - but not necessarily for people who are in our position. "Probably" is just too uncertain for us.

We're still considering Vermont and will keep trying to become better informed right up to the moment when we have to decide to take the position or decline. I very much appreciate the helpful advice I've gotten on this board.
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Old 07-16-2010, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Vermont
10,305 posts, read 11,212,063 times
Reputation: 14176
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelo129 View Post
I admit that, the more I look, the more dubious I become. "Decent" and "pretty decent" aren't very enthusiastic recommendations and sound a lot like "barely livable" to me. The Times/Argus had only five houses for rent. One was furnished, one was "rent to buy" and a third was a one bath house for $2250.00 plus all utilities paid by the tenant. We can afford to pay well, but not THAT well - especially not for a house with only one bathroom. The World had only three rentals; one was a single room to rent, one was a couple LOOKING for a rental, the third was a summer rental by the week. That leaves very few possibilities. Since, if we accept the job, we'd have to move quickly and rent something equally quickly, having only one or two possibilities at most means that we would effectively have no choice at all. We'd have to take what we could get, which might be something very unsuitable for us. That's a position we've been in before, and won't consider again. The fact that there are "probably" places we could rent farther away is not something we'd want to rely on. We might very well like Montpelier very much, and it may be a great place to live - but not necessarily for people who are in our position. "Probably" is just too uncertain for us.

We're still considering Vermont and will keep trying to become better informed right up to the moment when we have to decide to take the position or decline. I very much appreciate the helpful advice I've gotten on this board.
I hear you. It's been a long time since I've looked for a place to rent, and I'm sure that there are places that I would have rented when I was twenty or twenty-five that I wouldn't look twice at now.

Before you give up on Montpelier completely you might want to consider this. I don't know who has the listing, but I think there are some condos on College Street in Montpelier that are on the market for sale, but have been rented out lately. I've been in a couple of them in my role as a member of the Board of Civil Authority and I think they're pretty nice. You might be able to find them through www.nneren.com. I have no idea what they rent for, or even if any are available right now, but they might be worth a shot.
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Old 07-16-2010, 12:24 PM
 
161 posts, read 240,125 times
Reputation: 324
Quote:
Originally Posted by jackmccullough View Post
I hear you. It's been a long time since I've looked for a place to rent, and I'm sure that there are places that I would have rented when I was twenty or twenty-five that I wouldn't look twice at now.

Before you give up on Montpelier completely you might want to consider this. I don't know who has the listing, but I think there are some condos on College Street in Montpelier that are on the market for sale, but have been rented out lately. I've been in a couple of them in my role as a member of the Board of Civil Authority and I think they're pretty nice. You might be able to find them through www.nneren.com. I have no idea what they rent for, or even if any are available right now, but they might be worth a shot.
Thanks, we'll definitely look into the condos - and we appreciate the tip. And yes, it does become harder as we grow older and more picky (and less enamored of moving around). Since we've moved so often, we're very much aware that one person's paradise is another's hell on earth.
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Old 07-16-2010, 12:28 PM
 
Location: Rutland, VT
1,822 posts, read 4,528,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackmccullough View Post
I've been a homeowner in Montpelier since 1983 and I think it's a great place to live.

I don't doubt that some grumpy Vermonters wouldn't hesitate to call Montpelier "the park" and Barre "real Vermont", but I'm not that interested in what they have to say.
Agree with this. I live in Rutland and am happy here. However, Montpelier is my favorite town in all of Vermont. If we were ever to move, that's most likely where we'd go. Both places seem real to us, whatever "real" means, and have lots to offer.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Duluth, MN
521 posts, read 964,906 times
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Quote:
I would say that there are significant differences between Montpelier and Barre
The biggest one being that Montpelier has MHS and Barre has icky Spaulding High School . GO SOLONS!

I only posted that so my cousin - who is from Barre - could read it!

Both towns are nice, and I think there are some nicer rural areas (if they're still 'rural') accessible from Barre than from Montpelier, but I like Montpelier's downtown a lot more.

- from a former Times Argus carrier!
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