Where is a good place to raise a family around southern New England?
My wife and I are looking at moving up north. We currently live in Georgia and we are tired of the heat. We are looking for a town with a population of maybe 50 thousand or so. We don't want to live in a huge city, but we would like there to things to do, as well as a job market. My wife is a nurse, and I will be getting a teaching degree. We have two kids so school systems are important. We want a picturesque mountain "T.V." type of town. We would also consider northern Virginia are just south of New England. Does such a place exist?
Asked By: - 6/24/2012
What do you consider southern New England? New England = CT, RI, MA, ME, NH & VT.
For your Mayberry type towns I'd recommend looking at Vermont. The state is beautiful. The state is also uber liberal, and the taxes are very high. VT is mostly rural, lots of farms, so jobs could be an issue. Your best bet for nursing would be in the Burlington area (brutal winters) or Lebanon, NH (on the VT boarder). Lebanon, NH is where Dartmouth College is, and where Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center is located.
NH advantage. No income tax, no sales tax. We get porked on property tax. From a tax burden perspective NH is in the bottom 5 of states with the lowest overall taxes. CT ranks in the top 5 states for overall tax burden. Maine and Vermont are both high tax states too. MA and RI are towards the higher end of the tax burden scale also.
For mountain type area, the green mountains in VT, white mountains in central NH, and the mountains of central Maine are about it. No mountains to speak of in MA, RI, CT.
The NE states are small relative to the non-NE states. Not unheard of to live in one state and work in another. I live in NH, work in MA. I work with people who live in Maine and RI - who commute to the same place I do - Billerica, MA.
I'm of the opinion that schools are as good as the parents want it to be. If you use the school for day care and don't care about your child's education, then you get what you get. If the parents are involved, then you get better results. So you want a community where the bulk of the parents have the time and desire to get involved/push/monitor/help with the school system. Those communities tend to be the ones that are wealthier and have a higher percentage of college educated parents. Those communities are closer to major metropolitan areas - New Haven, Boston, Hartford, Portland Maine, Providence, RI, Burlington, VT.
After all that, the area I'd recommend is the sea coast of NH. It's coastal, not mountains though. Portsmouth is smack in the middle between Boston and Portland, Maine. It's close to the University of NH, there are two hospitals (Portsmouth and Exeter). You don't have to live in Portsmouth, there are smaller towns in the area - such as Exeter. Exeter is where Phillips Exeter Academy is located, which is a high end prep school. If you work there, you can send your kids there for free, providing they get accepted. From Portsmouth you can be in the White Mountains in about an hour depending on traffic.
Answered By: I Like Stories - 6/24/2012