Is New Hampshire a Good Place to Live? (21 Pros and Cons)

Pinterest Hidden Image

Assessing The Pros And Cons Of Moving To New Hampshire

Today, I will address this question: “Is New Hampshire a good place to live?” supporting the answer with all the pros and cons.

Whether you are relocating to New Hampshire for retirement, a new job, or a fresh start, today’s article has the helpful information you need to know.

Let’s get moving.

Is New Hampshire A Good Place To Live?

New Hampshire’s scenic beauty, safe, tight-knit communities, comparably low cost of living, and productive economic environment make the state a great place to live.

According to, people are moving to New Hampshire because of its convenient location, relative affordability of homes, favorable tax environment, and independent political views.

Local real estate agent Cam Avery says, “New Hampshire has stunning landscapes, a strong sense of community, and plenty of opportunities; however, it comes with harsh winters and limited job prospects in certain industries (source).

Next, I propose seeing how these comments align with New Hampshire’s pros and cons.

Pros And Cons Of Living In New Hampshire Compared Head To Head

New Hampshire Living: ProsNew Hampshire Living: Cons
1. Scenic beauty13. Tax on investment income
2. Ocean coast14. Massachusetts tax
3. Pristine environment15. High real estate taxes
4. Four weather seasons16. Hard winters
5. Tight-knit communities17. Limited diversity
6. Low crime rate18. Limited food options
7. Job opportunities19. Few urban amenities
8. Excellent schools20. Heavy summer traffic
9. Reasonable cost of living21. No major airports
10. Proximity to Boston
11. No sales tax
12. Savings on income tax
Table 1: Living or retiring in New Hampshire pros and cons

Next, let’s dig deeper into the 21 perks and pitfalls of New Hampshire living.

New Hampshire state seal - good place to live?Pin

Pros Of Living In New Hampshire

1. New Hampshire Has A Beautiful Landscape

New Hampshire is a place full of scenic beauty.

Most of the state is forested and pastoral. There are crystal-clear lakes, lush forests, and rugged mountains to enjoy.

2. Ocean Access When Living In New Hampshire

New Hampshire has an amazing but small ocean coastline. There are several top-rated New England beaches here.

However, the ocean shore is limited to less than 20 miles. New Hampshire holds the title for the shortest coast for a state on the ocean.

3. The Environment Is Pristine

New Hampshire is ranked highly for its natural environment by U.S. News.

Air and water quality are outstanding. Residents encounter limited pollution.

4. Four-Season Living In New Hampshire

Moving to New Hampshire means living in a state with all four weather seasons.

After relocating, you will experience cold snowy winters, a welcome spring thaw, and warm-humid summers. Forty inches of annual rainfall is sprinkled in evenly throughout the non-winter months.

Like all New England states, New Hampshire comes to life in the fall. You will love the colorful leaf display from the end of September into October.

Drive the Kancamagus Scenic Byway along Route 112 in Northern New Hampshire. The road is known as one of the best spots for fall foliage.

5. Small to Mid-Size Towns For Living In New Hampshire

New Hampshire is primarily made up of small to mid-size towns and cities. Thus, you won’t find much in the way of New England city living here.

Manchester has the largest population, with only about 110,000 people. Nashua’s population is 90,000. While Concord, the state capital, has nearly 40,000 residents.

Beyond those two mid-size cities. This state has dozens of small towns to choose from. Some of the state’s best places to live include:

6. Low Crime Rates Are Typical Of This And Other New England States

low crime rates in "The Granite State"Pin

New Hampshire has one of the lowest crime rates in the United States. Both property crime and violent crime are low.

USA Today ranks New Hampshire with the 3rd lowest crime rate in the country. New Hampshire’s border states of Maine and the lovely Vermont state are ranked 1 and 2 for lowest crime.

Thus, the country’s northeastern tip is one of the safest regions to live in.

7. Low Unemployment And Access To Major Employers After Moving To New Hampshire

New Hampshire has one of the lowest state unemployment rates in the country, typically running below 2%.

Some well-known companies are operating in this state, including:

  • Oracle
  • Fidelity
  • UPS
  • BAE Systems

New Hampshire’s homegrown, local employers are also well-represented, including:

  • Timberland
  • Dartmouth College.
  • The University of New Hampshire

Speaking of schools, here is another one of the best things about living in New Hampshire.

8. New Hampshire Families Have Access To Excellent Educational Opportunities

New Hampshire is one of the top states in the country for public K-12 education, according to WalletHub. Thus, a good public school education is affordable for families moving here.

New Hampshire’s Philips Exeter Academy is a selective private school for grades 9 through 12. It is one of the oldest and best schools in the country.

For college students, the state has a prestigious Ivy League school, Dartmouth. Then, there is the University of New Hampshire, a well-regarded public university system.

Next up. Another one of the benefits of living in New Hampshire.

pros and cons of living in New HampshirePin

9. Residents Can Find A Low Cost Of Living

New Hampshire’s cost of living compares favorably to some of the region’s nearby metropolitan areas.

It’s not one of the very cheapest states to live in. But that doesn’t tell the whole story. For example, the cost of living in nearby Boston, New York, and Philadelphia is much higher.

Consider New Hampshire’s small-town living options. You will find that the costs are much more reasonable. For example:

  • Suncook
  • Rochester
  • Berlin
  • Claremont

In these New Hampshire towns, home prices are lower. Thus reducing the average cost of living here.

10. Proximity To Boston For People Living In New Hampshire

New Hampshire’s proximity to Massachusetts and, specifically, Boston is a big advantage.

From southeastern New Hampshire, the state’s population center, Boston is just an hour’s drive away (traffic permitting). There, you can access all the big city amenities you desire.

More reading: Best places to live in the United States

11. No Sales Tax When Shopping In New Hampshire

best places to live for saving on taxesPin

New Hampshire does not have a sales tax. Neither the state nor any of the local municipalities levy such a fee.

Thus, the price you see on an item is the price you will pay. This is a nice benefit from other states because the savings can add up to a lot on everyday purchases.

New Hampshire is in rare company, joining only three other states that do not impose a sales tax.

The others are the west coast state of Oregon. Then, out to big sky country, Montana. Finally, Delaware on the East Coast is the last of the four states with no sales tax.

Next, I have another one of the tax advantages of living in New Hampshire.

12. Zero State Income Tax On Salaries And Wages

making money in "The Granite State"Pin

New Hampshire is one of only nine states that does not tax your earned or retirement income sources. The tax savings can be substantial depending on how much you make and where you are moving from.

But I can’t say that this state is the best for tax savings. Let’s discuss why as I switch gears and cover the disadvantages of moving to New Hampshire.

I will try not to bore you with a long tax discussion!

Cons Of Living In New Hampshire

13. Taxes On Investment Income In New Hampshire

New Hampshire taxes investment income. Thus, it is not an entirely income-tax-free state. Fortunately, the government is reducing the investment income tax rate in coming years and repealing the tax completely starting in 2025.

So, for now, plan on paying a tax on income from interest and dividends.

However, there is a small exemption. For example, the first $2,400 of investment income is tax-free per individual, $4,800 for those married and filing a joint tax return.

Pay attention to this next point about taxes when living in New Hampshire.

14. Taxes On Income Made In Massachusetts While Living In New Hampshire

Many New Hampshire residents choose to work in Massachusetts, specifically Boston.

However, Massachusetts charges an income tax to all workers within its borders, including residents of other states.

Thus, Massachusetts will take its cut if you earn income from working across the state line. The tax rate will be about 5%, depending on your situation.

So, if you do not want to pay income taxes, maybe you should consider working and living in a state like Tennessee, Texas, or Florida.

15. High Property Taxes

New Hampshire’s property taxes are higher than average.

States have to pay for the services they provide residents. So, with no sales tax and a favorable income tax policy, the state must get its revenue from somewhere.

Thus, New Hampshire generates revenue by charging one of the country’s highest real estate tax rates.

Okay. Enough about taxes. Let’s discuss some other cons of living in New Hampshire.

living in New Hampshire pros and consPin

16. Harsh And Long Winters Can Bring You Down

New Hampshire has tough winter weather with cold temperatures and plenty of snow. You can count on four solid months of harsh winter weather living in this state.

November through February is the worst time for winter in New Hampshire. However, cold fronts can move in as early as October. Be ready for snow starting in November.

Furthermore, the state’s mountain passes and trails accumulate vast amounts of snow, making travel dangerous.

New Hampshire residents eagerly anticipate warmer spring temperatures that emerge in April.

Next, another item on my list of pros and cons of living in New Hampshire.

17. Limited Diversity: Residents Are Similar In Many Respects

New Hampshire is not one of the most diverse states in the country.

Statistics show there is little ethnic diversity here. For example, 9 out of 10 New Hampshire residents are white.

More reading: Another state lacking big-city diversity

18. New Hampshire Food Is All-America With Little Ethnic Variety

New Hampshire doesn’t offer much in the way of ethnic foods.

You will find a diet of all-American foods, including good apples, tasty maple syrup, and fresh ocean-caught seafood.

I like the simple, basic, all-American food options, but the lack of variety is not for everyone.

Here’s another one of the pros and cons of living in New Hampshire.

19. Urban Amenities Are Scarce In New Hampshire

New Hampshire has few big-city urban amenities. For example, Manchester and Nashua are the only cities with more than 50,000 residents.

Here is what you will discover across the state:

  • Minimal nightlife options
  • Lack of high-end shopping
  • Limited public transportation

Finally, slow internet connectivity is a typical complaint from New Hampshire residents, especially in the state’s northern half. Many Maine residents have a similar issue with reliable internet.

20. Heavy Traffic From Spring To Fall

New Hampshire residents encounter heavy traffic during the summer season. The state’s natural beauty and outdoor activities bring summer tourists to the area, increasing the traffic congestion.

Visitors commute into the state on Friday from major East Coast population centers. The same people exit on Sunday night, heading home for the workweek.

Next, the last of my cons, then I will wrap up.

21. The State Doesn’t Have A Major Airport

New Hampshire’s largest airport is Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, located in the southern part of the state. Because of the limited flight schedule, many residents fly out of Boston or Portland, Maine.

Okay. That concludes my review of this unique state to live in. Please allow me to wrap up with some final thoughts.

moving to New Hampshire pros and consPin

Pros And Cons Of Living In New Hampshire – A Good Place To Live

I hope you have found today’s list of the best things about living in New Hampshire and some reasons not to move here helpful.

Yes, New Hampshire is a good place to live. However, carefully consider the pros and cons before you pack up and move.

More Reading Beyond The Pros And Cons Of New Hampshire

Author Bio: Tom Scott founded the consulting and coaching firm Dividends Diversify, LLC. He leverages his expertise and decades of experience in goal setting, relocation assistance, and investing for long-term wealth to help clients reach their full potential.

Pinterest image: living in New HampshirePin

The Pros And Cons Of Living In New Hampshire Explained