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New Hampshire Move

Old Nov 7th, 2019, 12:47 PM
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New Hampshire Move

Anyone have any thoughts or advice about moving to New Hampshire? I have done some research about taxes and business climate, etc. I have a small manufacturing business that I would be moving with me. I am currently in South Carolina so I know the Winter would probably be the biggest adjustment. I appreciate any feedback. Thanks
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Old Nov 8th, 2019, 01:49 AM
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As far as winter is concerned, we typically have snow when further south like in CT they have ice storms. The roads are usually cleared ASAP so it's just best not to drive when it's actually snowing. UPS is usually very reliable if you are shipping, at least my experience in the Concord NH area. Truck deliveries were good and we got to know some of the drivers but in our first rented location there was a problem with cars parking in front of loading docks. There have been recent articles about losing talented young people to other states but there has also been news that NH is a great location for employees who want to live in a place with 4 seasons, easy drive to either mountains, coast or Boston. You should probably talk to a real estate company that deals in business property to find out what kind of rentals are available if you are looking to rent. There are quite a few business condos around but each has own set of rules such as what kind of businesses are allowed (some say no auto mechanics, others say no retail). If you find a situation you like and it's a condo, talk to the other business owners about the overall atmosphere of cooperation and maintenance. We owned 2nd and 3rd units from an end that did not get very good snow removal in winter due to no place to put snow. Condo association had to call in a front end loader when it got bad and we started losing parking spaces.
You will also have to file business name with NH Secretary of State https://www.revenue.nh.gov/faq/regis...tary-state.htm
You might want to see what professional organizations are around and whether you want to apply for free advice/help from SCORE volunteers under US SBA.
NH has a low unemployment rate. If you need employees, that might or might not be a problem.
If you have a family with children in school, you will probably want to live in a town with a good school. Because NH does most of its school funding with property taxes, some towns do not have very good schools.
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Old Nov 8th, 2019, 12:23 PM
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Thanks for the wealth of information. I have an electronics manufacturing business and will probably be mainly focusing on government contracts so shipping access would be a major factor.
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Old Nov 9th, 2019, 12:52 AM
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Also keep in mind if you have business travel, Manchester airport is very convenient. Flights might be cheaper from Boston which is actually easier to access if you are in the vicinity of Concord Coach Lines which travels I93 and I95. The bus station in Concord has free parking. I don't know about the other bus stations. I think Dartmouth Coach does the route from I93 up I89.

Good luck.
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Old Nov 9th, 2019, 09:25 AM
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New England is an entire different animal than the South socially and sometimes politically. In New Hampshire that can vary a great deal from town to town. I think that might be a bigger adjustment than the weather. It's all a balance; for 3 months of the year it is so hot in SC that it's uncomfortable outside. For 3 winter months its miserably cold in NH. My in-laws all live in NH and we live in MA just south of NH border. With housing prices so high in expanded metro Boston, southern NH is now considered commutable distance from Boston and has a more Boston atmosphere. There are some towns that give a really nice balance between old-time rural and Boston-ish. You can get a good idea of this by looking at past election results in various counties. Check property taxes before you buy; while there is no income tax, property taxes tend to be high. Finding good employees is also a problem as dfrostnh mentioned - the unemployment rate is really low, especially in the southern 1/3.

My kids both went to school in the South and lived there for a while. My daughter summed it up best. "Everyone is so nice and polite here that you never know if they like you or not. At least in Boston if they hate you, you know it right away"
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Old Nov 11th, 2019, 06:42 AM
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Lots of good answers so far. We moved to NH from NJ many years ago,and couldn't dream of moving away. Of course the weather is a very big factor - right now it's lightly snowing, and temps close to zero are predicted this week. As for small businesses, there seem to be many similar to what you do, and they appear to be doing quite well. One factor to consider is where in NH you want to base yourself - there is a huge difference between the Nashua-Manchester area and the northern tier of the state. The Manchester-Nashua area is quite developed, with lots of businesses, malls, and housing developments. However, there is still plenty of New England charm if you drive away 1/2 hour away from the I-93 corridor. Because it's so well connected, this might be the best area for a small business. Other desirable sections might be the seacoast, the Dartmouth/Sunapee area, and the Keene/Monadnock area. One other factor to consider is the cost of living - property taxes are fairly high, and snow removal and heating are big expenses. You will find the people to be friendly but not overly so, and political affiliations are all over the map. Issues that are important in much of the south like football and religion are not as prominent up here, but there is lots of interest in outdoorsy activities and politics.
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Old Nov 12th, 2019, 12:39 AM
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I'm surprised to meet people who retire to NH and some do it for the ski season. Zootsi is right that outdoorsy activities are big - a lot of schools have after school ski programs. our regional high school has an equestrian team, 4-H is still very big in some areas, kayaking is very popular and affordable, bicycling is also very popular with some favoring professionally built fat tire trails. In addition to traditional sports, there is also pickle ball, pond hockey, and motor sports. Newest activity is riding the discontinued rails on some kind of pedal vehicles.

I agree getting to know people could be difficult so it's a good idea to join something. There is still a lot of farming going on but it tends to be small scale. You'll find quite a few local farmers markets some are held weekly even in winter. You'll be able to find local grass-fed beef, eggs from free range chickens and wonderful PYO berry farms and fruit orchards. Book clubs are popular. Do NOT get on the bad side of the town's road agent.
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Old Nov 12th, 2019, 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by dfrostnh View Post
. . . Do NOT get on the bad side of the town's road agent.
What is a road agent? I doubt the definition I got from google is what you mean.
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Old Nov 12th, 2019, 04:54 PM
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MmePerdu, I googled the term and it may be a tiny bit close to the truth. Made me smile. dfrost will clarify. NH has lots of dirt/unpaved roads and I am sure you don't want to be on less than good terms with the person in charge of making sure you can get out of your driveway and onto the road. They don't do your driveway just the road. But you need to get out of your driveway. And onto your road in a timely manner.

Looking forward to a few stories from dfrost.
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Old Nov 12th, 2019, 05:18 PM
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Is this when there's snow - the snow plow guy? I'm so confused.
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Old Nov 13th, 2019, 12:44 AM
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Originally Posted by MmePerdu View Post
Is this when there's snow - the snow plow guy? I'm so confused.
Gomiki is right. The town road agent may be appointed by the town managers called Board of Selectmen (except right now all three of ours are women so I think they call it a Select Board) or elected. Each town decides whether to appoint or vote for the road agent. The road agent is in charge of all roads both paved and unpaved and that includes mowing the sides of the road in late summer and cleaning out ditches but only if the road is "maintained by the town". This does not include private roads or Class 6 roads. In NH Class 6 roads aren't maintained by the town because nobody lives on them or it's too much trouble, usually a discontinued road. People who complain to the road agent about the way he does things run the risk of getting less than perfect service. Sometimes a new person driving a plow truck doesn't have the skill to avoid knocking down mailboxes or isn't very good at lifting the plow just right so your newly cleared driveway doesn't end up with a snowbank in front of it. The road agent fixes pot holes and decides each year which roads get new asphalt. If the road is dirt/gravel, the road agent also grades it to smooth out the ruts and adds more gravel where needed. The road agent and his crew also have to clean out plugged culverts which sometimes requires trapping the beavers who keep putting sticks in the culvert. I remember one time a new person complained to the Select Board that the hill he lived on was too icy. The selectman said it was raining on top of ice so the sand truck had tried backing up the hill so it could get traction on the sand it was dumping. But, it was raining too much, washing the sand away so the truck couldn't get up the hill. The selectman told the complainer that some days you should just stay home.
Since NH select men and women get paid a pittance for all the hours they work, sometimes they don't care if they don't get re-elected. And right now they probably always side with the road agent because it's getting darn hard to find someone with the equipment and skills to maintain the roads. Furthermore, our town is fiscally conservative so we don't have a clean roads policy. The town plows don't even come out unless there's at least 2 or 3 inches of snow. So if choosing a place to live, it's probably best to ask the real estate agent if the road in front of the house you'd like to buy is on a town or state maintained road. The state does have a pretty good clean roads policy in winter. If it's a private road, you should also check on the town's policy regarding emergency vehicles. People living on private roads have to hire their own snow plow guy. The town does not plow private roads and fire trucks might not be allowed on them either.

Towns in southern NH with more money to spend probably keep their roads in better shape than further north. Also, there's a difference between a town and a city and how they are managed. If you want city benefits, choose a city. If you like a quieter area, choose a town but don't expect to have trash pickup or city services like leaf collection in the fall or free Christmas tree pickup.
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Old Nov 13th, 2019, 09:21 AM
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It all makes sense now. Thank you!

Until a year ago I lived on a private road that wasn't plowed & also had potholes that would finally be repaired by an experienced resident with help from neighbors when they were truly terrible. When snow was forecast I just got groceries & hunkered down for the duration but here, in the CA Sierra Foothills, it never stays on the ground for more than 2 or 3 days so nothing like what I imagine you get in NH. A year ago, while shopping for a different house, same town, one of the items on my wish list was being on a publicly maintained road. Last winter was my first here and I wish your road agent would have a chat with our plow operator about how not to leave a snow bank at the driveway. But I'm also a bit higher here so more snow & I am grateful for the cleared road (& no potholes!).

Thanks again.
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Old Nov 13th, 2019, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by dfrostnh View Post
As far as winter is concerned, we typically have snow when further south like in CT they have ice storms. The roads are usually cleared ASAP so it's just best not to drive when it's actually snowing. UPS is usually very reliable if you are shipping, at least my experience in the Concord NH area. Truck deliveries were good and we got to know some of the drivers but in our first rented location there was a problem with cars parking in front of loading docks. There have been recent articles about losing talented young people to other states but there has also been news that NH is a great location for employees who want to live in a place with 4 seasons, easy drive to either mountains, coast or Boston. You should probably talk to a real estate company that deals in business property to find out what kind of rentals are available if you are looking to rent. There are quite a few business condos around but each has own set of rules such as what kind of businesses are allowed (some say no auto mechanics, others say no retail). If you find a situation you like and it's a condo, talk to the other business owners about the overall atmosphere of cooperation and maintenance. We owned 2nd and 3rd units from an end that did not get very good snow removal in winter due to no place to put snow. Condo association had to call in a front end loader when it got bad and we started losing parking spaces.
You will also have to file business name with NH Secretary of State https://www.revenue.nh.gov/faq/regis...tary-state.htm
You might want to see what professional organizations are around and whether you want to apply for free advice/help from SCORE volunteers under US SBA.
NH has a low unemployment rate. If you need employees, that might or might not be a problem.
If you have a family with children in school, you will probably want to live in a town with a good school. Because NH does most of its school funding with property taxes, some towns do not have very good schools.
Are you a FROST Frost?
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Old Nov 14th, 2019, 12:40 AM
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Originally Posted by ibobi View Post
Are you a FROST Frost?
No relation to Robert or Jack.
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Old Nov 14th, 2019, 12:52 AM
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Originally Posted by MmePerdu View Post
It all makes sense now. Thank you!

Until a year ago I lived on a private road that wasn't plowed & also had potholes that would finally be repaired by an experienced resident with help from neighbors when they were truly terrible. When snow was forecast I just got groceries & hunkered down for the duration but here, in the CA Sierra Foothills, it never stays on the ground for more than 2 or 3 days so nothing like what I imagine you get in NH. A year ago, while shopping for a different house, same town, one of the items on my wish list was being on a publicly maintained road. Last winter was my first here and I wish your road agent would have a chat with our plow operator about how not to leave a snow bank at the driveway. But I'm also a bit higher here so more snow & I am grateful for the cleared road (& no potholes!).

Thanks again.
Actually, I like snow to stick around not because the grandchildren like to ski but because I'd rather hit a snowbank than a telephone pole or tree. Fortunately, it was part of our pre-nuptial agreement that I don't have to shovel snow or mow lawns ... and I don't ask how much the John Deeres cost. (notice plural) DH finally got tired of the cold while out snowblowing (tractor with snowblower attachment) so now he has a plow truck, too.

This video was made when John Lynch was governor. If you don't recognize the famous NH faces, the names are listed at the end.
For your evening entertainment some snowy night:
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Old Nov 14th, 2019, 07:44 AM
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In our lifetime we have moved to and away from New Hampshire, not necessarily for the same reasons you might be considering.

New Hampshire’s lack of sales or income tax often gets attention (watch out for very high property taxes), but Forbes Magazine last year ranked New Hampshire (34th) well below South Carolinas (15th) and North Carolina (1st) on its list of “best states for business.” I note “business costs” as one factor to their detriment.

https://www.forbes.com/best-states-f.../#tab:-overall

Here is a possibly biased comparison of SC and NH, as prepared by a NH economic group:

NH-vs-SC-July.pdf

For many people, including the many snowbirds who head for Florida in the winter, weather is very important and will be very different from SC.
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Old Nov 15th, 2019, 12:56 AM
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Interesting Whitehall. According to Forbes, Quality of Life rank for SC is 44, NH is 23.

I was surprised at the difference in SAT scores and wonder if only public schools were counted. Surely Phillips Exeter, St. Paul's, and other private schools would bring NH scores up.
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Old Nov 15th, 2019, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by dfrostnh View Post
Interesting Whitehall. According to Forbes, Quality of Life rank for SC is 44, NH is 23.

I was surprised at the difference in SAT scores and wonder if only public schools were counted. Surely Phillips Exeter, St. Paul's, and other private schools would bring NH scores up.
There are lots of methods of ranking states on various issues including education. Here is one that suggests New Hampshire, despite its lack of "broad based" taxes, is ranked quite high in US education: https://reachinghighernh.org/2018/01/19/new-hampshire-ranks-4th-us-quality-public-education/

The "pledge"not to vote for a sales or income tax for politicians to get elected in New Hampshire is legendary. As a former NH reporter, I remember asking Ronald Reagan in 1976 about his plan to make states pay for more things such as welfare, which would have required such a tax in NH. He was oblivious to this issue and narrowly lost, probably for a variety of reasons, the NH primary to Ford and soon lost his first effort at the Presidency. So, don't expect tax climate to change anytime soon. And therefore property taxes will continue to largely support education. Some wealthier areas of New Hampshire, with their excess property tax dollars, provide great education. Less affluent areas not so good. Maybe some day there will be a more equitable tax sharing plan, but, until then, if you have kids, do your homework.
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Old Nov 16th, 2019, 12:45 AM
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Good points, whitehall. I've heard of some parents who move to a town with great schools while their kids are in school and later move to a town with lower property taxes. Of course, some families simply choose the private school route.

Now that we're retired and involved in an educational program for people over 50, I'm surprised by the number of people I'm meeting who have retired to NH to be close to grandchildren and don't go south in winter.

It would be interesting for OP to explore the many small tech companies in NH and why they choose to be here. A commercial real estate agent should be able to give some good advice.
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Old Nov 16th, 2019, 02:38 PM
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hmmm... I lived in New Hampshire for a short time, after college, and in between Massachusetts and Vermont. It's a very beautiful state. I moved away from New England decades ago because of the weather. Snow and winters just aren't for me. But I have to say, I love the people and the attitude can-do spirit of New Englanders in general.

My question is one I ask any time I read a post thinking of moving elsewhere (retirees to Mexico, off to the Caribbean, want to live in Europe, etc.)... have you spent time there? Can you spend time there? Before making this decision. Do you have family or friends in the state? Try for at least vacation or do a road trip to see for yourself how it feels. I can't tell from you post for sure, but it sounds like this idea comes only from online research and an economic consideration.
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