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VT or bust

MissySki

Angel Diva
I’ve been subscribing to ThinkVermont for the last two years. This whole mass move to the state might be just what they were looking for. Just not all at once.

Given the fact that they’ve been offering people money to move to VT and work remotely I’d say this is exactly what some wanted. I guess there can be too much of a good thing when it happens all at once though, like you said. It has to be way beyond anyone’s wildest projections. There are also two sides to every coin. While it sucks for would be buyers, I bet the recent sellers are thrilled with their sale prices and it’s always good for current owners when property values are high. Why do we only blame the buyers? Obviously the sellers aren’t trying to suppress prices either haha.
 

Christy

Angel Diva
I bet the recent sellers are thrilled with their sale prices and it’s always good for current owners when property values are high. Why do we only blame the buyers? Obviously the sellers aren’t trying to suppress prices either haha.

I can't speak to everywhere but here homeowners complain about rising home values because it just means higher property taxes. (This is especially tough on retired people of course.) I mean, we live here because we want to live here--sure I lust after a cabin on Orcas Island, but not to live in full time. If we sold we'd never get back in! And I don't know where we'd go if we wanted to cash in on the boom--everywhere we'd want to live was expensive and competitive even before Covid.
 

MissySki

Angel Diva
I can't speak to everywhere but here homeowners complain about rising home values because it just means higher property taxes. (This is especially tough on retired people of course.) I mean, we live here because we want to live here--sure I lust after a cabin on Orcas Island, but not to live in full time. If we sold we'd never get back in! And I don't know where we'd go if we wanted to cash in on the boom--everywhere we'd want to live was expensive and competitive even before Covid.

Some of the places seeing booms around New England in and around ski towns have had their prices suppressed for a really long time. Around Sunday River anyway the on mountain condos had remained close to the same price for the decade+ after the housing market crash. I know a lot of the people who have sold recently doubled their money (or more) from when they purchased and were able to upgrade to larger units or houses in town. The current taxes on them are extremely low, but yeah presumably taxes will also rise the next time assessments happen.

Obviously it isn’t the same in every area and different for people to deal with if we are talking about second homes versus primary residences. Anyone I know who owns around the mountain seems quite thrilled about the recent events and increased value, but they are all second home owners. I feel the same as you in the case of my primary residence where I wouldn’t sell because everything else has just moved up in price accordingly and the inventory is too scarce to want to deal with trying to buy.

I think having really in demand real estate in tourist areas is usually a good thing overall. You want people to come and spend money, the more in demand an area the more likely you can get people there for more than one season each year to increase revenue etc. There are pros and cons though and I know affordable housing for locals in these areas is one of the big problems it brings. That isn’t anything new though, it’s been an ever increasing problem for a long time that should be a priority to figure out.
 

WhyKnot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Ah, you're "singing my song"! I typically ski Suicide Six (3 miles) on Saturdays & Quechee on Sundays (6 miles) with weekdays mostly at Okemo (or Sunapee to take a lesson) with ventures to Pico, Bromley & Stratton, etc. I was supposed to try Magic this year. Sigh...!!! :cry:
@snowski/swimmouse I hadn't known much about bromley, thanks for the tip !!! though unless it is a place on the weekends that may be NOT crowded I will prob pass this year (just checked FB and looks like Sat was crowded). Ive been taking weekends off of Alpine largely due to crowds, though could check out Queechee, Woodstock to see how they are.
 

snowski/swimmouse

Angel Diva
@snowski/swimmouse I hadn't known much about bromley, thanks for the tip !!! though unless it is a place on the weekends that may be NOT crowded I will prob pass this year (just checked FB and looks like Sat was crowded). Ive been taking weekends off of Alpine largely due to crowds, though could check out Queechee, Woodstock to see how they are.
My friend that lives up there shopped around and found Bromley to be the most pleasant in this COVID environment. I liked it immediately because it was so much less crowded than Stratton, had a small mountain feel yet lots of varied terrain.
 

SallyCat

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
I've heard good things about Bromley this year as well; glad you found an enjoyable resort in a crazy year.

I took up snowboarding this season as a way to have fun on smaller hills and it's been a blast. Here's a shot from this evening; we finally started to get some great natural snow here in the last month or so. Our local hill (Ascutney) ran its T-bar from noon to 4, so I skied with friends all day and then stuck around afterward to hike-and-ride until my energy ran out. I feel pretty darn lucky to have such a beautiful space almost to myself, especially these days!

Screen Shot fire Ascutney Snowboard.png
 
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SallyCat

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
@SallyCat : I learned to ski at Ascutney from 1968 on... I'm a supporter these days and hoping they'll add back a lift at some point...

I don't think they will ever have a chairlift. The land-purchase agreement stipulates something about no lift-served skiing or mechanized recreation above about mid-station, which is roughly where the t-bar ends right now. They do keep most of the upper trails mown and cleared, though, and there is a vibrant backcountry scene here. It will never be a for-profit resort again, but in its own way, it's turned into a real gem of a mountain.
 

snowski/swimmouse

Angel Diva
Six different people/sets of people owned it (including some of my dad's co-workers near the end) and all went bankrupt. It's such an awesome mountain. Bode Miller used to train there because it was steepest east of the Mississippi River
I want to ski there again, but seriously question that I could handle the T-Bar anymore. They have not denied my checks for that purpose!
It was super that it could be reopened as it is to give the locals a good (non-drug) way to spend their time!
 

WhyKnot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
I've heard good things about Bromley this year as well; glad you found an enjoyable resort in a crazy year.

I took up snowboarding this season as a way to have fun on smaller hills and it's been a blast. Here's a shot from this evening; we finally started to get some great natural snow here in the last month or so. Our local hill (Ascutney) ran its T-bar from noon to 4, so I skied with friends all day and then stuck around afterward to hike-and-ride until my energy ran out. I feel pretty darn lucky to have such a beautiful space almost to myself, especially these days!

View attachment 14753
@SallyCat - Nice ! & How crowded - is there a line - on the t bar weekends?
 

WhyKnot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
There's usually a small line, but it moves fast.
@SallyCat Like 5 min kind of line or how long? Social distance for real? I have been spoiled by pretty much skiing with no lines, and looking to keep it that way (I don't mind lines but when people are not committed to SD it is the issue). Thanks for info!
 

SallyCat

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
I've never skied at Northeast Slopes, but I used to work up near there and had some colleagues that really loved it for skiing with their kids. The gist that I got was that it was small-but-interesting; nice for kids, but not boring for adults, either. I would say the same about Ascutney; you don't get a ton of vertical but you get a wide variety of choices, from groomers to ungroomed trails to glades.

It's not usually ski-on, since the lifts only run for 4 hours a day, but the lines are usually not more than 5 minutes; often less. Plus it's only 15 bucks for a ticket and you can rest or eat lunch on the outside porch. Mask wearing and distancing is excellent; enforced of course, but it doesn't even really need to be, people seem to be great about it.

EDIT: I'm sorry if I've thread-hijacked. I'm obviously a bit smitten with the place I live and wanted to share some of the joy. :focus:
 

WhyKnot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
I've never skied at Northeast Slopes, but I used to work up near there and had some colleagues that really loved it for skiing with their kids. The gist that I got was that it was small-but-interesting; nice for kids, but not boring for adults, either. I would say the same about Ascutney; you don't get a ton of vertical but you get a wide variety of choices, from groomers to ungroomed trails to glades.

It's not usually ski-on, since the lifts only run for 4 hours a day, but the lines are usually not more than 5 minutes; often less. Plus it's only 15 bucks for a ticket and you can rest or eat lunch on the outside porch. Mask wearing and distancing is excellent; enforced of course, but it doesn't even really need to be, people seem to be great about it.

EDIT: I'm sorry if I've thread-hijacked. I'm obviously a bit smitten with the place I live and wanted to share some of the joy. :focus:
Thank you so much for all of this and I did not realize we were off topic per-se as I think this will give OP some more reasons to move to the UV (haha!). I may check out Ascutney and/or Northeast slopes some weekend - appreciate the info you have shared. I want to learn to uphill (and get the gear for it) as it will open up a lot of options. Friends uphill at Whaleback to add to the other local friendly hill options around. PS @marzNC if I wanted to ask some uphill/skinning gear and technique questions, would I make a new post or would you suggest one already on the forum?
 

snowski/swimmouse

Angel Diva
If you have other than downhill interests. Woodstock is considered the "touring" center with beginner, intermediate and advanced trails on and off the golf course at the Woodstock Country Club. There are lots of options in the area. Once skilled you can also do the trails at Faulkner Park on into the Marsh Billings Rockefeller Park which has many more great trails starting from various parking lots in the park
 

WhyKnot

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
If you have other than downhill interests. Woodstock is considered the "touring" center with beginner, intermediate and advanced trails on and off the golf course at the Woodstock Country Club. There are lots of options in the area. Once skilled you can also do the trails at Faulkner Park on into the Marsh Billings Rockefeller Park which has many more great trails starting from various parking lots in the park
Yes thanks - and Woodstock trails look sweet, I do XC in Hanover where its also lovely. Its what I do weekends sometimes to avoid the crowds. I like flat tracks! I have not yet learned to stop on XC skis to enjoy the hills and more of the terrain but I love the workout around the tracks -- and the golf course in Hanover and the trails at Storrs pond I am sure are great too. Of course my XC buddies really into it ski the Greens (sp?) in Lyme (free too!)
 

jthree

Certified Ski Diva
There are so many uncertainties in the development process in Vermont that it’s just expensive to get anything done. Act 250 is a huge barrier to development because it acts as a state wide zoning process. There are also random permitting fees (like the agricultural impact fee which sounds good in theory but doesn’t really reflect the reality of development patterns) that drive up costs further. The developers don’t care or have an incentive to lobby for change; they just pass costs on to consumers.

A few cities have made changes to help streamline the development process - I know S. Burlington and Winooski both adopted a form-based code that makes local zoning compliance much easier - but until we have a realistic fix for Act 250 and a certain subset of voters can relax a bit on the mindset that All Development is Bad and Will Utterly Destroy the Environment (while proudly flying flags virtue signaling inclusivity) it’s difficult to imagine substantial changes. Increasing funding for affordable housing alone won’t do the job; the demand for workforce housing is just too great.

Hope my little rant doesn’t veer too far into the political here - I worked on financing for several hundred units of affordable housing around the state in the year before I left private practice and clearly have Opinions on the matter.

This is helpful! I just hear people complain about housing costs but I don’t really have a deep understanding of it all (I’m in healthcare, so not up my alley at all).
 

ilovepugs

Angel Diva
This is helpful! I just hear people complain about housing costs but I don’t really have a deep understanding of it all (I’m in healthcare, so not up my alley at all).

I want to amend my post above and say that I appreciate the state wide zoning in Act 250 because it keeps our state looking beautiful!

It’s some of the specifics of Act 250 that are unnecessary and make things seriously unpredictable and slow, especially when a development is potentially controversial.
 

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