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Old 01-17-2017, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Washington State
6 posts, read 6,058 times
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Relocating to the NH Seacoast to be closer to family and have no income tax. My husband wants to be rural on acreage with "big trees and privacy". I'm worried about the social aspects of living in a rural town. He's also not a fan of cookie cutter developments where all the houses look similar. Developments are appealing to me because of the social aspect. I guess it's possible to find a property on a few acres of good land in a development with some diversity but they don't come up very often. We have young kids so schools are an important factor. We are interested in the Oyster River School System. Is Durham the place to be? Do Lee and Madbury have anything going on at all? Also would love to hear your thoughts on other towns and schools. My husband is pretty anti anything in a flood plain (or would be after rising sea levels) and properties with scrub trees (anything within a few miles of the coast). He works from home and I'm at home with the kids so commuting is not an issue. Thanks in advance for any info you share!
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Old 01-18-2017, 08:22 PM
 
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Unless your a young student, nothing in Durham. Lee and Madbury have absolutely nothing. Towns with a lot going on would be Dover, Portsmouth, a little in Exeter.
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Old 01-20-2017, 04:12 PM
 
Location: states without income tax ;)
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Have you been to NH before? Are you guys currently in WA?
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Old 01-20-2017, 06:05 PM
 
Location: Manchester, NH
114 posts, read 103,275 times
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Originally Posted by 399083453 View Post
Unless your a young student, nothing in Durham. Lee and Madbury have absolutely nothing. Towns with a lot going on would be Dover, Portsmouth, a little in Exeter.
Durham is centered around UNH. The school basically dictates the culture of the town. That being said there are areas off Packers Falls Road that have some nice developments that sound like what you are looking for.

I would think that Exeter or Dover would be a better option for you. Both towns really focus on the community. Also, you should focus on homes that were built prior to 1990. The homes before 1990 tend to have mature landscaping, and more unique floor plans. Even the typical New England Colonials have more charm when they are over 20 years old!
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Old 01-20-2017, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Washington State
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Thank you for your thoughts. We are still currently living in WA but we are both originally from MA. We don't know NH very well but will be spending some time there at the end of next month to get to know the area better. Sounds like Durham is not the best fit for us. Currently, my husband has his eye on an old farmhouse in Lee with a lot of land and big old trees. I like a house in Rye that's on a few acres in a development. It's at the end of what seems like a quiet road, but right in the center of Rye, so it might not be as quiet as I'm hoping.
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Old 01-20-2017, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
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I strongly suggest buying a DeLorme "New Hampshire Map and Atlas". this large format map book has every road name etc. as well as a lot of other information. Then plan on taking a couple of weeks driving around while staying in the area. There is a wide range of housing in Portsmouth and surrounding towns. April is a good time as the winter is mostly over and the summer season has not started.
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Old 01-20-2017, 07:05 PM
 
Location: near bears but at least no snakes
24,020 posts, read 23,467,039 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunshineandsmiles2085 View Post
Thank you for your thoughts. We are still currently living in WA but we are both originally from MA. We don't know NH very well but will be spending some time there at the end of next month to get to know the area better. Sounds like Durham is not the best fit for us. Currently, my husband has his eye on an old farmhouse in Lee with a lot of land and big old trees. I like a house in Rye that's on a few acres in a development. It's at the end of what seems like a quiet road, but right in the center of Rye, so it might not be as quiet as I'm hoping.
The center of Rye is like the center of nowhere. Rye is a gorgeous town and it has the most magnificent coastline I have ever seen, including anything in CA. It's funny because you can get ocean plus mature trees and green grass in that area and in a few others. Rye is UPSCALE. Watch out for property taxes in NH.

Exeter, to me, is maybe a tad more conservative?? Others could chime in here but Exeter and Stratham are sort of alike to me and seem to be more staid than something like Portsmouth, which is hopping. Rye? Mostly I know of its seacoast and rte 1 and a shortcut that goes through Rye. It's a very beautiful place.
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Old 01-20-2017, 07:54 PM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
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If your husband is looking for 'big trees and privacy' Lee is (of the 3 Oyster River towns) most likely you're looking for, followed closely by Madbury BUT while the schools are highly regarded, there really is not a whole lot going on in either town... Durham has a cute downtown that is geared to student life, and to a lesser extent, the families of professors that teach at the college. Many properties just outside campus are geared to student housing, which many more residing off campus in Somersworth & Dover (lots of multi-family properties in some of the downtown neighborhoods as Rte 108 flows through the town). Depending on your budget, you might consider Exeter or Stratham, both part of the SAU 16 district. Some of the towns that border Exeter might satisfy his desire for privacy, in particular East Kingston or Kensington. (Sau 16 towns include Brentwood, East Kingston, Exeter, Kensington, Newfields and Stratham). Newfields is a lovely town, not a whole lot going on but close to Rte 101 and all of the Exeter/Stratham conveniences. You're also near Hampton & North Hampton, plenty of shopping (and traffic, of course) along Rte 1. It's kind of amazing how close you can be to the coast and still have 'big trees'


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunshineandsmiles2085 View Post
Relocating to the NH Seacoast to be closer to family and have no income tax. My husband wants to be rural on acreage with "big trees and privacy". I'm worried about the social aspects of living in a rural town. He's also not a fan of cookie cutter developments where all the houses look similar. Developments are appealing to me because of the social aspect. I guess it's possible to find a property on a few acres of good land in a development with some diversity but they don't come up very often. We have young kids so schools are an important factor. We are interested in the Oyster River School System. Is Durham the place to be? Do Lee and Madbury have anything going on at all? Also would love to hear your thoughts on other towns and schools. My husband is pretty anti anything in a flood plain (or would be after rising sea levels) and properties with scrub trees (anything within a few miles of the coast). He works from home and I'm at home with the kids so commuting is not an issue. Thanks in advance for any info you share!
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Old 01-20-2017, 08:57 PM
 
Location: near bears but at least no snakes
24,020 posts, read 23,467,039 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valerie C View Post
If your husband is looking for 'big trees and privacy' Lee is (of the 3 Oyster River towns) most likely you're looking for, followed closely by Madbury BUT while the schools are highly regarded, there really is not a whole lot going on in either town... Durham has a cute downtown that is geared to student life, and to a lesser extent, the families of professors that teach at the college. Many properties just outside campus are geared to student housing, which many more residing off campus in Somersworth & Dover (lots of multi-family properties in some of the downtown neighborhoods as Rte 108 flows through the town). Depending on your budget, you might consider Exeter or Stratham, both part of the SAU 16 district. Some of the towns that border Exeter might satisfy his desire for privacy, in particular East Kingston or Kensington. (Sau 16 towns include Brentwood, East Kingston, Exeter, Kensington, Newfields and Stratham). Newfields is a lovely town, not a whole lot going on but close to Rte 101 and all of the Exeter/Stratham conveniences. You're also near Hampton & North Hampton, plenty of shopping (and traffic, of course) along Rte 1. It's kind of amazing how close you can be to the coast and still have 'big trees'
Oh good, the expert weighed in. I could never have thought of all those towns. Kensington is really rural--it's where I go to take my fall foliage pictures. There are good farms around there for fresh produce too. North Hampton has a little bit of good shopping and I think that's where Fuller Gardens (rose garden) is located--it's very pretty around there and is on the ocean. If you want a mall, it's up in Salem but there are big box stores like Walmart, Staples, Home Depot, Michaels, Kohls, Lowe's just to the south in or around Seabrook. Southern NH is kind of amazing because there's the spectacular ocean right next to farm land. The vitamins/health food store is in Hampton and just a bit to the north of that is an expensive natural grocery store (can't remember the name but it's like a small version of Whole Foods.)
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Old 01-21-2017, 06:47 AM
 
20,289 posts, read 11,872,169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valerie C View Post
It's kind of amazing how close you can be to the coast and still have 'big trees'
Yeah, like 100 feet. I used to live on the back channel in Portsmouth. I could look over the water (or mud flat at low tide) and see the Little Harbour School. If you don't chainsaw trees, you'll have 100 foot maples in 50 years. It's not Cape Cod with sandy soil and scrub oak. There are few mature trees because trees interfere with the ocean view.

I hope the OP realizes that with children, rural means they're basically going to be taxi service for their kids for the next decade+. I imagine they'll meet people through all the kid-oriented activities so NH Seacoast semi-rural suburbia won't be completely isolating but there's going to be 20 or 30 hours per week where the car is on carting kids to and from things. You really don't need 5 acres in the middle of nowhere to get some isolation from your neighbors. Just buy something next to green space. "Abuts conservation land" means you're not paying property taxes on that land. Or buy a house with a bit larger lot with mature trees and hedges. You can add fences and plant things if necessary. Personally, I place enormous value on being able to walk to things. Portsmouth was great. I could go days without ever taking my car out of the garage. I could bicycle to the office out at Pease. I could walk to the farmer's market or for a cup of coffee at Breaking New Grounds.

Last edited by GeoffD; 01-21-2017 at 07:06 AM..
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