Possibly moving to CT - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-20-2007, 01:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DH has a possible job interview in Bristol, CT.

I am trying to dig up any and all info I can on the area.

I have heard great things abotu the Farmington area, and many of the areas West of Bristol, but I'd love to hear more from some crunchy moms.

We'd be relocating from the Philly suburbs, and I have never even been to CT!

Things we'd be looking for (assuming he gets the job and we move!):
-a small town (somewhere we can walk places and there is some stuff to do, good restaurants, a coffee shop and maybe a decent health food store)
-proximity to a great homeschooling co-op
-decent house prices (we'd be looking for 4 bedrooms for around $400K but we always love to spend less!)
-we need some charm! We love older homes and all that comes with them.

Any reasons NOT to move to CT?

Thanks!
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Old 04-22-2007, 04:07 PM
 
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I'd say it sounds like you want to live in West Hartford. Depending on what part of Bristol, and what part of WH, the commute could be anywhere from 10 - 25 minutes, but it's a reverse commute, so when all the traffic is heading east toward Hartford in the morning, your husband would be heading west.

A lot of Connecticut is, sadly, really car- and cul-de-sac- centered, but West Hartford seems to have bucked that trend pretty well, probably because its neighborhoods were established long enough ago. We love that we can walk just about anywhere (not as many sidewalks on the north and far west fringes)

WH also has a great town center, and you could easily find a home in the price range you mentioned, I'd think, within walking distance of the center. It took us a while to get used to the fact that the town center was so . . .upscale, having come from another part of the country, but hey, this is Connecticut. So there are jewelry stores and places to store your furs (!) But also, the main library (currently under renovation) is right there, as well as the town offices, post office, banks, drugstore, various ice cream shops, awesome restaurants, a variety of boutiques and specialty shops including a great toy store and the wonderful Papaya Patch, a store for parents and young children that supports natural family living. There are two chain and one local establishments you might call coffee shops (unless you are from the Pacific Northwest, where there's an independent coffeeshop brewing locally roasted fair-trade beans on every corner): a Bruegger's Bagels, with decent coffee options, a Starbucks, and Front Street Sweets, who sells Seattle's Best brand coffee along with their amazing scones and sandwiches.
2 or 3 blocks from the Center is Whole Foods. Another block or so is the Children's Museum (or is it the Science Museum? sorry - I'm pregnant, not a parent yet)
There are great parks in town, and great homes - most of them older rather than younger - in a variety of styles, shapes and sizes, most of them charming! McMansions - not very many of those. There are some real mansions, actually, (or stately old homes that fit my definition of mansion) in a pocket or two.
I know you said it was just a possibility of moving to the area, but I had to speak up - I actually registered today and this is my first post - in favor of WH.
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Old 04-23-2007, 12:35 AM
 
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I know nothing about the Bristol area, but I feel that CT is VERY VERY expensive. We are moving as soon as we are finished with school due to the general high cost of living! It may not be an issue to you though! Good luck!

Mama to Clara 5/2/06, & Anna 11/4/08 and wife to Dan 6/8/02
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Old 04-24-2007, 12:09 PM
 
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Take a look at downtown Unionville in Farmington.

You can get to Bristol in 5 minutes.

The downtown is being totally revitalized as a walking downtown. There is a health food store, mom and pop pharmacy, large food store, cute little museum, a coffee shop, mom and pop hardware store, river, bike trail and lots more. All within an easy walk.

The entire town is very family oriented with a great library, lots of festivals, parades and band concerts.

You can also find a home for under $400K.

Good luck with your search!
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Old 04-25-2007, 01:51 PM
 
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West Hartford is really-really-really nice, but can be pricey, although your budget for housing is enough to get a nice place there. Another alternative is to look inthe opposite direction, Thomaston and Watertown are both great, and I'm in love with Winsted. Southington is another great town to look at. Honestly though, Bristol can be a pain to get thru, commute wise (I live just outside of it, and have to go thru it to get anywhere east of here) so depending on what side of Bristol your DH will be working in, you'll probably want to live near that side of town.
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Old 04-25-2007, 06:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am honored I received your first post, kikabean!

Thank you so much for all the feedback.

DH is interviewing with ESPN on Friday, so we should know for sure by next week.

I love the sound of West Hartford as well as all the other areas mentionned. In fact DH found a house already in Southington.

While we have heard over and over how expensive the area is we are relocating from the Philadelphia area (Mainline area suburbs) and housing prices here are high to me.

We have done some searches on realtor.com and found a ton of houses that would suit our needs (size wise, yard wise) in our price range. Suprisingly we have been able to actually find housing with more space than here.

We are curious about the differences in cost of living.
What are income/state/real estate taxes like?
Here we pay 6% tax on anythign that is not neccesity (things like groceries and clothing are tax free), and real estate taxes are really high, while state taxes are fairly reasonable.

Again, thanks for all the input.

I really hope it works out.
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Old 04-27-2007, 02:25 AM
 
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Kelly - if you are looking to be near ESPN, I would definately recommend Southington.

I'm not completely sure about the cost-of-living, but there is about a 6% tax on most purchases - I forget whats exempted, I think food and clothing under $50? Income taxes are a bit high, real estate depends on the town you live in. In our town they are somewhat high, but others aren't too bad. Stuff like cars are taxed yearly though, (personal property tax)and that can add up fast if you have newer/nicer cars. (That said, you can deduct that in CT, which helps a bit)

Good luck on the interview and all that ensures afterwards
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Old 05-01-2007, 06:24 PM
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I would have to second West Hartford.

Southington....hmmm. It seems very developed, busy, with lots of traffic and chain/retail/strip malls to me.... I know there are some nice neighborhoods...but to me it's not a town with a village feel to it.
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Old 05-02-2007, 03:29 PM
 
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Another vote for West Hartford. It's a great place but property taxes are high and are only going to go thru the roof. We have friends that are going from $11 grand to just over $20. Ours won't get as crazy as that but we have a tiny house farther from the center. Good luck!
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Old 05-02-2007, 04:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rainbowbird View Post
I would have to second West Hartford.

Southington....hmmm. It seems very developed, busy, with lots of traffic and chain/retail/strip malls to me.... I know there are some nice neighborhoods...but to me it's not a town with a village feel to it.
Southington does have the strip mall areas, but the old downtown is really nice and you can walk from place to place.
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Old 05-03-2007, 01:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, it is looking more and more likely that we will be in CT by mid summer.

They are working up an offer for him apparently.

We are sitting on pins and needles waiting.

We will definitely be checking out all the areas mentionned here.

11K for property taxes? And I thought property taxes here were high! We had looked at several interesting houses onlien and saw lower property taxes than here. (Most of the houses we have been looking at-we have been house hunting for months!, are in the 5-6K range)
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