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Old 04-08-2013, 08:08 PM
 
35 posts, read 60,482 times
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We are a family of four relocating to Maine in mid-summer 2013. My husband will be working in the S.Casco area and we are trying to find the right area for our family. We have 2 children(middle school and elem) and cat & dog. We think the best plan is to rent the first year and then buy a house. We plan on visiting our areas of interest (Yarmouth, North Yarmouth, Falmouth, Cumberland and Windham) in May to explore and narrow down the town. Please comment on my understandings of what I have read about these areas. I am interested in Yarmouth because it covers a smaller area, has a small town feel and the public schools are good. I also liked Yarmouth because it seems like it is established already and there aren't going to be a ton of Mcmansion neighborhoods sprouting out all over the place.
Am i correct?
Falmouth and Cumberland seem more spread out, scenic & rural but w/ new construction everywhere, but good schools. I know taxes can be alot too in both areas. I don't know that much about Windham, but I compare it to the Poconos in PA where it is pretty, but doesn't really have a town feel and also has alot of out of towners coming in and out for vacations. It also looks like the Windham area is growing w/new construction everywhere. I don't know if I am into new developments everywhere. I don't know alot about the schools in Windham just that a previous poster said the sports programs are good, but nothing about academics of the public schools.
The Windham area is the area that my husband is leaning towards, (he likes the lower taxes )but for some reason I seem to lean towards the Yarmouth area. I have read that N. Yarmouth is pretty rural, but in the Cumberland School district. (good, but school district covers such a lg. area)
We currently live in Wilm., DE a suburb of Philadelphia. We live on a .25 acre lot in a nice, established neighborhood. We are close to everything you could ever want. In fact, we have too many choices it can get overwhelming. We prefer a change when we get to Maine.
When we move to Maine we feel that living on a couple of acres 2-4 would be ideal w/ rolling fields and hills. To me the scenery and view is more important that the house, although I would need the space to eventually build or add on an in-law or small guest cabin and need to be near the schools, supermarket a a few stores, library, post office etc.
Like I said, i want to narrow down the area so that we can start looking for a rental. With the visit in May, I am sure we will have a better handle on the towns after exploring, but any info. before then would be soooo greatly appreciated!!! Where should we look to rent? Can you give me a summary of the towns mentioned above in your words?
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Old 04-10-2013, 05:34 AM
 
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Congratulations...(music notes) "your life is about to change, ain't ever gonna be the same." You're in for a real treat and adventure. My suggestion would be to live as close to your husband's job as possible. An hour's (without complications) drive to and from work on mostly two lane roads is beautiful in although could be challenging or much longer in a snow storm or in summer traffic. Rent and get to know the areas. I understand that you probably are concerned about putting your children in school for 2013-2014 and then potentially having to put them in a different school for 2014-2015. The only way to avoid that is to choose a place and continue to live/rent/buy in the school district or go with private schools. The coastal areas and the area around Naples (Sebago Lake) have thousands of summer residents and out of towners coming in and out for vacations. The traffic on Rt. 302 in the summer is an experience you will never forget. I'll give this some more thought and perhaps write more later.
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Old 04-10-2013, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Gorham, Maine
1,910 posts, read 4,623,368 times
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mainegrl has a good point. If he's working at the Yacht builder, which is right off of 302, there is tremendous summer traffic on Friday afternoons, Saturday mornings and Sunday afternoons. I would think a Yarmouth commute would be about 45 minutes or so and on back roads. I'm surprised you saw "a lot" of new construction in Windham, we don't have much to speak of and with the shortage of inventory in many towns you mention, I'm sure it will ramp back up significantly and soon.
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Cape Elizabeh, ME
404 posts, read 695,708 times
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I think your assessments are about right, except to get the 2-4 acres leaves you just Cumberland and Windham of those 4 choices.
I have a friend who just built in Cumberland, because he wanted more land, and good school for his kids. Your right when we did a compare we found his taxes were higher than mine in Cape, by a few bucks per mil.
I don't feel Cumberland has the McMansions though that I've seen in other places...you definitely don't get that feel here, in comparison to where your coming from.
Windham yes has lots of summer people, but there is something nice about when all the summer people leave, having the town to yourself. Many people here are repeat visitors too....so you'll see the same people coming back.
Windham, might be easier to rent in for the winter as a number of summer owners like to get renter in for the winter, these types of places would start opening up in September which might not match your time frame.
You might want to have a look at Gray....I noticed it wasn't on your list, but its as close as the others and you might be able to get your 2-4 acres.
Food for thought...... 2-4 acres often comes with a long driveway or access road, You'll have to pay some one to plow it in the winter...which can really add up to a few hundred a month or more. Or you'll need a truck and have to buy a plow attachment. If you share an access road the cost can be split amongst the neighbors. The shorter the driveway the less expensive plowing is or can be handled with a snow blower or shovels. My point is make sure you ask when renting about Plowing & Heating!
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Old 04-14-2013, 01:05 PM
 
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Oh thank you so much for all your advice. We may add Gorham to the areas to explore now.
We will be visiting the areas in the near future to narrow down the town & school district. After that, a search for a rental or temporary housing will be started.
Any input on Gorham & Windham school districts would be appreciated. I already heard good things about Yarmouth, Falmouth & Cumberland. Thank you again!
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Old 04-16-2013, 08:03 PM
 
Location: Portland, ME
234 posts, read 300,753 times
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I'd second considering Gray, as it is both the most convenient to the Portland area and has the best schools of the towns near Casco which also include Windham and Standish.

Gorham is a little nicer with slightly better schools, but a little further away with a greater than 30 minute commute.

Scarborough, Yarmouth, Cumberland, and Falmouth will be further out and more expensive, and if you're considering the 45+ minute commute you might as well consider Cape Elizabeth too.
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Old 04-18-2013, 02:07 PM
 
35 posts, read 60,482 times
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Default ? re: gray area & schools

Gray is an area I did not even consider. Having good public schools is at the top of my list, but also being not too far from work. Is there anyone w/ kids in Gray/New Gloucester schools? Middle school and highschool?
Do the schools have highly qualified & experienced teachers? Do the schools there have everything they need? Is there school & community pride? Are the schools modernized to today's standards?
I am sure we will be driving around there and exploring too. If we have to live further away from work to insure a better quality school district we will. Thank you for any info. This is all so helpful to steer us in the right direction!!!
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:33 AM
 
35 posts, read 60,482 times
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Default Where we ended up...

Hi. I previously posted earlier in the year asking for suggestions of areas to move to. We relocated and were looking to buy in Cumberland co. We ended up buying in North Yarmouth. The area is quiet and rural, but convenient to everything. The kids are doing great in school. (MSAD 51) Beautiful area. We are blessed.
FYI: don't move to this district if you have a child that wants to do marching band. There is none at this school and still trying to figure out if it is a Maine thing or just this school that chooses not to have one or can't have one for some reason.Also, from observation, the schools may not support or promote the sport of cheerleading as much as the other sport programs they offer. In fact, some schools don't even have cheerleading squads.
However, we found a cheer program , CYC that has been great at promoting the sport at a young age. Hopefully, it will grow in time - especially with the support of the athletic directors. The few football games (home and away)we attended were not what we are used to. Kinda quiet for a Friday night under the lights. No band, no cheerleaders and if there were cheerleaders they aren't allowed to be close to the spectators. The Greely HS cheerleaders were really good. They were sharp, loud and spirited for a small group.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:24 PM
 
62 posts, read 76,002 times
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Great choice! I was scrolling down after reading your initial post, and was going to suggest you were on the right track with North Yarmouth or even Pownal/Durham.
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Old 06-28-2017, 11:00 AM
 
37 posts, read 39,032 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melbanie View Post
Hi. I previously posted earlier in the year asking for suggestions of areas to move to. We relocated and were looking to buy in Cumberland co. We ended up buying in North Yarmouth. The area is quiet and rural, but convenient to everything. The kids are doing great in school. (MSAD 51) Beautiful area. We are blessed.
FYI: don't move to this district if you have a child that wants to do marching band. There is none at this school and still trying to figure out if it is a Maine thing or just this school that chooses not to have one or can't have one for some reason.Also, from observation, the schools may not support or promote the sport of cheerleading as much as the other sport programs they offer. In fact, some schools don't even have cheerleading squads.
However, we found a cheer program , CYC that has been great at promoting the sport at a young age. Hopefully, it will grow in time - especially with the support of the athletic directors. The few football games (home and away)we attended were not what we are used to. Kinda quiet for a Friday night under the lights. No band, no cheerleaders and if there were cheerleaders they aren't allowed to be close to the spectators. The Greely HS cheerleaders were really good. They were sharp, loud and spirited for a small group.

Hello! Not sure if you're still checking this thread but I just wanted to get in touch to see if you were still in N. Yarmouth and see how you were finding it 4 years on if you're still there?
We've been looking to possibly relocate with my husband's job and have considered Australia, Canada and the US. The US was third on the list as, being from the UK and with a young family, we were a little worried about gun crime and gun accidents. I know Maine is one of the safest states though crime wise, although is in the middle of the table when it comes to gun deaths. My husband and I both studied at USM for a while, (where we met), so we know the Portland area well, although we haven't been to North Yarmouth. But through extensive research we felt this would be a nice place to bring up the children should we decide to relocate to Maine. We felt it was close enough to Portland, we wanted to be near the coast, (as we live on the coast in the UK), we wanted somewhere fairly quiet but with access to things to do, places to go etc. and also somewhere that had low crime. I also understand that N. Yarmouth schools are quite good. Did your children attend North Yarmouth Memorial School by any chance? Would love to know what you thought of the school as well as the area. Hope you're all still doing great there!
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