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Relocating from San Diego

Carlsbad
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Relocating from San Diego

My husband and I have been searching across the country for a more viable place to live. Being in California nowadays means traffic, heavy taxes, snobbish teenagers and tourists year-round. While we're still looking across the board, I'm focusing on Derry right now as I have yet to come across any information that has scared me away.

Our requirements:

Decent taxes (The lower, the better!)

**A good job market (especially for tech jobs)

Safe

Lower cost of living (The San Diego and Orange County)

From all I have seen, the weather is more extreme, cost of living is lower, taxes are lower, jobs are O.K. and it looks very cute. I'm hoping some of you guys on here can give me the good with the bad, though.

I do want to know what we'd be getting into!

Portsmouth, NH
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41 posts
29 reviews
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1. Re: Relocating from San Diego

Hmm, I will be honest and say that Derry is not my *favorite* town in the area, that is for sure. I would recommend an Exeter area town, so you can be close to Manchester and Portsmouth and even Massachusetts. Just my opinion, though!

Lincoln, NH
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2,488 posts
11 reviews
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2. Re: Relocating from San Diego

Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world....

Yeah, I'm puzzled too why you'd zero in on Derry. It's not a bad town, but, well, if I were footloose and looking I guess I'd have other towns in mind.

What do you want from a town? Seems mostly like you want reasonable cost of living and old-fashioned values... but what about that which floats your boat? Museums, universities, lakes, mountains? JOBS?

Me, I'd look at Portsmouth NH, and Portland ME. But that's me...

Baltimore, Maryland
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for North Conway
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12,109 posts
55 reviews
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3. Re: Relocating from San Diego

Boy I am shocked at the comments about Derry. Now, I don't know much about Derry itself (which probably explains my shock) but it is close to many places including Boston, it is over the border so you get the tax break, and the cost of living is certainly lower than Orange County and you have Southwest just up the road in Manchester. I hope we can hear from some

Derry-ites (Derrieres?). Lostfiniel, I would suggest that you take a trip and visit. Check out the schools if that is a concern, drive around the neighborhoods, sit in a local restaurant and watch your potential neighbors, etc. There are alot of great small NE towns that will fit your bill. There are thousands of Mass expatriates who live over the border to avoid various MA taxes (who all moved for the slower life style and with each new resident diminish that lifestyle by just a little more- if you ask the natives). You do have a limited audience here and we are usually talking about touristy stuff. Good luck with your search.

Portsmouth, NH
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41 posts
29 reviews
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4. Re: Relocating from San Diego

If you are looking for a cute, quaint New England town, Derry is not it. No cute town center at all. The location is alright, but you can do better.

Alton Bay, New...
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245 posts
4 reviews
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5. Re: Relocating from San Diego

OK, something around Lake Winnipesaukee will have low taxes because the waterfront people pay the big bucks. It is safe, our cost of living is very low, it is beautiful and not crowded but the job market is not good.

Antrim, New...
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6. Re: Relocating from San Diego

I would agree with the Derry comments. Derry was a pretty NH town, like many others, which grew into a bedroom community with the tech boom of the 80s. It is kind of too big for its size. That said, to a city person (and I am one - NYC and DC before coming here 25 years ago) used to postage stamp house lots, Derry would look quite dreamy. I agree with neslaw1. Go there and check it out, walk around town, have breakfast or lunch in a local restaurant, go into the town hall, etc.

While you are in NH, explore the state a bit. If you haven't been here since making this decision, you might want to consider a week or two vacation exploring the different regions of the state. Go to www.visitnh.gov, the state tourism website, and explore the state online, see what appeals to you. Access to Portsmouth, Manchester, and even big bad Boston, is one consideration. But keep in mind that about 2//3 of the state's population lives in the southern tier, especially in the southwest corner, from the Concord-Manchester-Nashua corridor to the seacoast. So, all other areas are less populated, and filled with many surprises.

Lakes region is beautiful, but also congested during the summer with tourists. But many beautiful places to live there. Look also at the Monadnock Region, and the Dartmouth/Upper Valley region and the Lake Sunapee region. A bit more off the beaten path, more bucolic, surprising cultural gems tucked awway all over, and not much farther to the cities, if that is what you want.

BU the way, another option you might consider, is to move here and rent for a year or two. That way you make no commitment and can keep all your options open. Living in NH will look different with San Diego a year or two in the dust.

Wakefield, New...
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7. Re: Relocating from San Diego

Lostfiniel, I think my pick would be Concord or for more rural, but close to town, Bow or Hopkinton. I'm a REALTOR and recently sold a house in Bow to my daughter (2 kids) and also sold one to my son (no kids) in Manchester. I schlepped all over the place for a loooong time with them and I like the Concord area for the following reasons: on Rt I-93 corridor for easy commuting to jobs in Manchester, Nashua or MA. Concord is the state capitol and has a lively arts scene, good restaurants, good schools and shopping. I'm not as high on Manchester and it's suburbs.

Property taxes are the main source of revenue in Live Free or Die NH - no sales or income tax and we are trying hard to keep it that way.

You can't beat the quality of life here - oh and another thing. Concord is a little over an hour to the ocean beaches, 1/2 hr. to the lakes region (many lakes with excellent water quality) and about an hour to the White Mtns. (hiking, state parks, skiing).

I grew up in PA and this is about as good as it gets. If only we didn't have to shovel so much...

Welcome and leave your CA troubles behind.

Antrim, New...
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8. Re: Relocating from San Diego

Nice suggestion from NHwanderer. Interestingly enough, COncord (pop. 42K) is not much larger than Derry (pop. 34K). But Concord is a lovely small city. As noted, it has a lovely downtown. It is an hour each from Boston, the Seacoast and U of NH, the White Mountains, Hanover (Dartmouth Univ), and even to Keene in the beautiful Monadnock region. It is a city and commercial center, that very quickly blends to rural.

Bow and Hopkinton are very nice towns, probably the pricier among the surrounding towns, but after Sasn Diego real estate prices, housing here is going to seem reasonable and extravagant. Hopkinton is especially lovely and historic and kind of rambles through 2 or 3 little towns. I don't mean to dis Bow (pronounced "boe"), but you will find that there is no real town center. It is nevertheless a lovely area. There are many other very nice towns within 20 minutes of Concord - from Henniker, Warner, Canterbury, Dunbarton and many towns in between.

That is the thing about New England in general, everything is so close together. You go driving around the smaller roads - state highways and county roads - and you go around a couple of turns and you arrive in another little town center. It all depends on what you are looking for.

New Hampshire
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9. Re: Relocating from San Diego

I live in Derry and love it. But I have to say the property taxes are crazy and that is because of the school system, which is excellent. Pinkerton Academy is more like a private school/NE college campus than a public high school.

I agree and disagree with a lot of the comments. First, Main St. in Derry (Rt 102) does have the "old town" look and feel. Although I do agree with another poster who said that Derry's a little too big for it's size. Lots of diversity in Derry as well, from lots of trailer parks to mansion sized farm houses. Lots of open, rural spaces and yet you have Wal-Mart as well. As much as I enjoy living in Derry and appreciate the fine education my son received at Pinkerton, if I had my "pick" among towns, I would probably go to a more rural or sleepier little town such as Chester or Canterbury. It all depends on your specific needs and what you can afford.

Manchester, NH
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10. Re: Relocating from San Diego

I agree that Concord is a nice area, low taxes because of all the state property but not so easy to find a house for that reason. They are much more cosmopolitan than Manchester or Derry.

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