10 Pros and Cons of Living in New Hampshire

Updated On November 16, 2023
New Hampshire

New Hampshire has been listed as the number two state to live in America by U.S. News and World Report’s list.

The state is predominantly known for its pristine wilderness, high quality of life, and excellent job market.

It is defined by quaint little towns and fast wilderness.

It is also known as the Granite State due to its many quarries and extensive granite formations.

If you do plan on making the move to New Hampshire, you may want to consider a few of the advantages and disadvantages of living in this state.

Concord, New Hampshire
Concord, New Hampshire

Pros of Living in New Hampshire

There are many benefits to living in this beautiful state, including outdoor living, a safe environment, and plenty of job opportunities, to mention a few.

For this article, we will focus on five of the top advantages of living in New Hampshire.

1. Beautiful scenery

New Hampshire is one of New England’s most prized gems.

The beauty of this state has to be seen in order to truly be appreciated.

Its landforms are defined by majestic mountain ranges, exquisite lakes, and scenic landscapes.

If you enjoy skiing, then you will truly love Mount Washington.

It’s the tallest mountain in New Hampshire and the highest peak.

Its views are something out of this world.

In addition, it is a top hiking destination and the view from the top of the mountain on a clear day includes New York, the Atlantic Ocean, Massachusetts, and Canada.

White Mountain National Forest offers tourists camping, hiking, horseback riding, as well as skiing in the wintertime.

Other mesmerizing locations include, Lake Winnipesaukee, Hampton Beach, Portsmouth Harbor, Conway Scenic Railroad, and Kancamagus Scenic Byway to mention a few.

2. Zero sales tax

That is right!

There is no sales tax in the state of New Hampshire.

This is one of only four states in the United States that offer no sales tax to its residents.

That means that the price you see on any item is the price you will pay.

In addition, the fact that there is no sales tax means that property is much more affordable in this state.

Many residents establish a home in New Hampshire as it is close in proximity to Boston.

These residents then commute to Boston as it is much more affordable to purchase a home in New Hampshire and commute across the state to work.

In addition, no sales tax means that retirement income is not taxed either.

3. Great employment opportunities

The unemployment rate in New Hampshire is quite low, sitting at 2.1%.

That is because New Hampshire is home to some of the biggest names in business, including BAE Systems, Velcro, USA Inc., Oracle, Fidelity, UPS, PC Connection Inc., and Medtronic, to mention a few.

Many of these companies are global companies that have their roots in New Hampshire.

In addition, many of these companies offer excellent employment packages, including decent benefits, retirement benefits, and competitive salaries.

It is always better to secure a job before moving to another state.

However, there are a plethora of other smaller businesses, such as franchise restaurants and small shops that are constantly recruiting throughout the year.

Finding a job once you get to New Hampshire should not be too much of a problem, as there is a demand for workers in the state.

4. Most beautiful fall

Not many states can boast of a beautiful fall. In fact, several states experience a very dreary season filled with shades of gray and brown.

But not New Hampshire.

Possibly one of the most beautiful falls you will ever experience is in this beautiful state.

It may even be the single most important reason you would want to move here.

The fall in New Hampshire simply moves the soul.

And, even if you have to wait an entire year to see it, it is well worth the wait.

And if that is not enough, there are a plethora of scenic drives and beautiful hikes that you can take in the state, to appreciate the beauty of this season.

Taking a drive along Kancamagus Highway allows you to take in the splendor of the season.

The season owes its beautiful hues to the changing color of the leaves on the maple trees, oak trees, and birches, which light up the landscapes in majestic colors of bright green, yellow, red, and orange.

5. Beautiful, quaint towns

There is a lot of history in this part of the country.

These quaint little towns are truly unique to this state with their cobblestone walkways, small antique shops, and covered bridges.

The cottage-style homes that you find in New England are somewhat of heritage to this part of the country.

You will not find them anywhere else in the United States.

And, these style homes bring a certain type of ambiance that you also will not find anywhere else.

You will quickly fall in love with these small towns, filled with rich history and charm.

Cons of Living in New Hampshire

As is the case with most places, just as there are benefits, there are disadvantages to living in a specific area.

1. No public transit

If you move to New Hampshire, it’s best to do so in your own vehicle as the public transport system in this state leaves something to be desired.

In fact, there are ways of getting out of the state of New Hampshire but little to no transit within the state.

This can be very frustrating, especially if you don’t own a vehicle.

Unlike other states that have very developed public transit systems that operate daily and sometimes through the night as well, New Hampshire does not share the same qualities.

There are no public trains that run daily, taking you from one city to another, or from one part of the city to another.

There is a bus system that runs in both Manchester and Concord.

But this is hardly advanced or integrated.

It can take you to your destination and that is about it.

In order to move around in New England, you will either need to take a Greyhound bus or connect with the Amtrak system in Boston.

2. What nightlife?

New Hampshire is not exactly known for its younger population.

In fact, there is an aging population that lives in this state.

And as such, there is little to no nightlife in New Hampshire.

The state caters mostly to aging residents and young families.

So, if you are single, New Hamshire may not be the best place for you to experience the nightlife.

The closest you will get to experiencing nightlife in this state may be in Manchester or Portsmouth.

Apart from that, you’re looking at a local bar for entertainment.

So, if you are a food and wine connoisseur, you may struggle to find a decent fine dining establishment that is able to cater to your needs.

3. Drug addiction

Sadly, this beautiful state is plagued by an opioid addiction that has seeped over many of the beautiful cities and towns.

It has one of the highest death rates due to drug overdose.

The state has even established a special task force and implemented proactive interventions in an effort to combat the surge of drug abuse in New Hampshire, but to no avail.

When boredom strikes, people turn to drugs.

The main cause of the epidemic stems from the high rate at which the drug is being prescribed, in addition to extended-release opioids.

It is estimated that nearly 13% of the population in this state uses illicit drugs.

4. Congested traffic

It is no secret that New Hampshire is a summer destination for many people across the US.

And as such, you can expect congested traffic during the summer months.

This is exasperated by the fact that the public transit system is basically non-existent and you have to drive yourself from one destination to another.

More visitors means that there are more cars on the road and that summertime is a nightmare when it comes to getting around in the state.

The worst of the traffic usually hits around Memorial Day to Labor Day.

If you can somehow adjust your schedule to ensure that you run your errands before or after these dates, you should be fine.

Otherwise, you are looking at bumper-to-bumper traffic for hours on end.

5. High property taxes

The property price in New Hampshire is $440,000 for a standard home and is slightly higher than in the rest of the nation, which is approximately $374,900.

Now that may not seem like much of a problem, but most of the residents work in the hospitality industry.

Not everyone living here gets to earn a big salary by working at one of the international companies.

In fact, some of the wages are pretty low in comparison to the national average.

The state has the second-highest property tax rate in the country.

For a small bedroom home, you are looking at anywhere from $7,000 annually in property taxes.

And, unless the government does something about the exorbitantly high property tax, they are going to struggle to attract the younger generations to move and set up home here, as they intend to do.

Laconia, New Hampshire
Laconia, New Hampshire

Pros and Cons of Living in New Hampshire – Summary Table

Pros of Living in New HampshireCons of Living in New Hampshire
1. Beautiful scenery1. No public transit
2. Zero sales tax2. What nightlife?
3. Great employment opportunities3. Drug addiction
4.  Most beautiful fall4. Congested traffic
5. Beautiful, quaint towns5. High property taxes

New Hampshire Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: New Hampshire Safety Review

Safety Index:
New Hampshire

Frequently Asked Questions

How bad is crime in New Hampshire?

New Hampshire has the second-lowest violent crime rate of any state in the US.

There are approximately 164 violent crimes reported per 100,000 residents.

Murder is the least common crime in this state, accounting for only 1% of the total violent crime in New Hampshire.

What is the most common crime in New Hampshire?

In terms of property crime, New Hampshire is mostly subjected to larceny, grand theft auto, and burglary, while violent crime includes assault, robbery, and rape.

What is the most dangerous city in New Hampshire?

The most dangerous town in New Hampshire is Rochester.

You have a 1 in 31 chance of becoming a victim of property or violent crime in this town.

The crime rate in this town is 99% higher than that of any other city or town in the state, regardless of the size.

What is the main attraction in New Hampshire?

Without a doubt, the number one attraction in this state has got to be Mt. Washington Cog Railway.

What food is New Hampshire known for?

There are two delicacies that you must try when visiting this state: venison and apple cider donuts.

23 Comments on 10 Pros and Cons of Living in New Hampshire

  1. Revisit this, with realistic reviews on the state of New Hampshire. It is full of snotty rich people that hate you, no matter who you are. The police are glorified hall monitors, harassing anyone that isn’t the president. There are NO jobs. Unless you are a teenager looking for 10 dollars an hour part time. The place is the most boring place I’ve ever been. You can go on the lake ( lots of rules) which makes it not fun, or you can go to a bar. Thats it. Everyone is dull. No humor at all. There is no middle class. There’s filthy rich and dirt poor. Also, everything basically closes at 4pm. Movie theaters last showing is 7pm. What a joke. 2 /10 for NH trash.

    1. T
      Tom Greco says:

      I live in NH, and we’re not all snotty, rude people. I’m middle class, and I can say that as you head into northern NH, you will find many middle class families. This of course is different than southern NH, where you find the larger towns and cities.

      1. L
        Lauren Manchester says:

        Hey, I live in southern NH. The hate is CRAZY!!! You guys hating on a certain part of NH shows that you guys are snotty rich people that hate everyone, your behavior is super childish and immature, just because you guys grew up privileged and not having to worry about money doesn’t mean your better than us. Not everyone here is poor, I might be but most people aren’t. Your just a BIG HEADED snob!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        1. J
          Just a question says:

          How is the school’s system?how are the roads and other things fix with no taxes.

      2. A
        Anonymous says:

        I completely agree with Tom Greco!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    2. A
      Anonymous says:

      A bit harsh, don’t you think?

    3. ive lived in nh my whole life, and i dont think ive ever met any “snotty rich people” or anything like what you said. also if you think everyone is dull and has “no humor,” you just DONT have a sense of humor at all. and, at least in the area i live and the places ive been in new hampshire, most of the places that ive seen close at around like 8pm-10pm and like sure there are places that close early but like?!? its not all of them‼️

  2. A
    Anonymous says:

    Pros-no state income or sales tax, beauty, seasons, the friendly people, education, colleges. seasons, employment, volunteerism, easy involvement in government and community. sea coast and Boston.

    Cons- Winter can be long, black flies and mud season, short summer.

  3. I live in NH, I have been to all 50 states, NH is my overall favorite little to nothing bad about it.

  4. A
    Anonymous says:

    I love living in New England especially New Hampshire.

    I’m originally from Rhode Island. I had moved to New Hampshire after living in south-west Florida along the Gulf coast. I lived there for four and a half years on Anna Maria Island. I wanted to experience the beautiful beaches and swimming in the warm and clear Gulf waters. Living in Holmes Beach on Anna Maria Island was great the first year! But after that not so great! Deadly bacteria had killed a woman that swam at the beach near my home. My tap water always had a foul odor and tasted awful plus was expensive ($50 per month for one person).

    I got tired of buying Fiji water every week. I now enjoy drinking cold, delicious spring water from a popular roadside spring in Bethlehem, NH. Lightning storms were frightening and dangerous in Florida compared to lightning storms in New England. Also when it rained in Florida I sometimes had to pull over when driving. It rained so hard people couldn’t see thru their windshields! Sinkholes were common on the mainland near my home.

    Hurricanes were also common. Tornado warnings from my weather alert radio woke me up once or twice in the middle of the night. Tornado warnings at night can be unnerving. Huge cockroaches sometimes got into my house along with lizards. Termites drilled holes in my ceilings one year dropping their poop thru the ceiling forming small piles here and there on my floor. My landlord had to have the house tented. Tiny ants called grease or thief ants invaded the house one year. I had to quickly get that under control. I often found snakes on my front patio at night. That wasn’t much fun. I got tired of the heavy traffic on the roads on the mainland and the five minute long red lights.

    I also didn’t care for high crime rate and how certain shoppers used to act at Walmart. They’d step in front of your car in the parking lot daring you to hit them. They wouldn’t wave to say thank you for letting them cross, but would ignore you completely and their children would do the same. Inside Walmart they acted like they owned the store ignoring everything and everyone around them while they shopped. They would also sometimes block the aisles with their shopping carts and no one ever dared say anything to them. I started getting claustrophobic living in Florida.

    There was just too many people, too much traffic and not enough open land. I also terribly missed the food I grew-up eating in New England. I sold my furniture and many belongings, packed the car with one load and moved to New Hampshire. I never looked back. I found an apartment and a couple of years later bought a house in a small town near Littleton. I love it here.

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      Thank you for the info

  5. M
    Michael V Hutchinson says:

    I like the fact the automobile insurance is not required in New Hampshire. I’m from “ Hug A Thug, Coddle the Cold Blooded Murderers”: Brooklyn & Queens, New York. My state minimum liability insurance is $3000/year. What a ripoff.

    1. You don’t have to have car insurance, however, I found out as a 19 year old, if you get in a car accident & it’s your fault, you are then required to file an SR22 & not only insure you car, but your license as well. I paid for the damages which were $500.00 to the driver I hit. Ot was a rainy morning, I hydroplaned & hit a lady who was stopped for a school bus. I wasn’t speeding, certainly not drinking. I paid her damages, got insurance (which now cost 3 times what it would have) & insured my license. The state sent me back my license plates & license with a letter stating “If you ever drive in this state again without insurance & get in an accident, you will lose your driving privileges for good.” I feel like I was treated worse than a DWI driver. I’m much older & would never drive with out insurance, but I was very young, working 2 jobs to support myself & living in 2 sandwiches a day & didn’t have the money for insurance. It took me two years without a license & paying off the car to get the insurance.

  6. d
    doublej says:

    I moved to NH from NJ 4 years ago. Before that I lived in TX, IL, and WI. I know Jersey has a reputation for rude people, but it’s child’s play compared to NH! The drivers in this state are about as rude and self-centered as I’ve ever seen. They tailgate, have no clue what a yield to right of way law means, drive 90 when the speed limit is 65, love giving the finger, and are just plain white trash.

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      I agree with everything except the white trash.

      1. A
        Anonymous says:

        It wasn’t like this years ago. It’s way different now. You don’t know or like your neighbors years ago you new the whole town. People were kind on the roads. All this has changed. You hear gun shots all the time fireworks all the time. Trash everywhere. Hoarders everywhere. This state has dirty places not just beautiful places. Yes the natural beauty is here but not like it was years ago. It has changed and not for the better.

    2. N
      NH Taxpayer says:

      I would ask what season you drove in NH and whether you checked the license plates. I live on a lake and during tourist season we are bombarded with rude out-of-staters who fire off firecrackers every night of the week, drive their boats fast (drowning loon chicks), and are extremely loud trying to squeeze a year’s enjoyment into one month, week or weekend.
      Also, NOT a great tax state. Tax money has to come from somewhere! Homeowners are paying the load with high property taxes. When I lived on Dover Point, I paid $8000 a year for a townhouse with no services provided by the town.

  7. NH is tax friendly but still has liberal Senators. Yuk.

  8. After I retired from my career job I then decided to work part time in the Hotel industry.
    I found most people, whether they be guests or employees, to be extremely helpful and polite. (There are lodgers who demand and harass the help. I think it’s just something they think they should do).
    I suspect some of that terrible traffic rudeness you have endured might just be our multiple visitors. We New Hampshire natives complain about the traffic situation, just like you have. And More! The locals have a nickname for these people.


  9. All states have their negatives. You can bitch about rude drivers in NH but over well over 25 of the residents come up from you know where. A rural state like NH won’t have the nightlife or excitement of Boston or NYC. If that’s important to you, why move here and complain about that?

  10. C
    Carolyn says:

    If you want to enjoy NH’s scenery and hot humid summers, by all means, buy a small cottage on one of the many lakes here. However, if you become a permanent resident, be prepared for cold, remote neighbors, even colder, snowy/icy winters and a life devoid of excitement. Oh yeah, not to mention the exorbitant property taxes which makes up for the great no sales tax blurb. It all evens out and NH is as expensive as it’s neighbor, Taxachusetts. It’s a really nice state to drive up to the North country for the scenic views and fresh air, but that’s about it. Lots of ignorance here, and lots of druggies, especially in Manchester. If you want culture and friendly people, live in the state at our southern border. I’ve lived here for over 20 years, and I can tell you all NH leaves a lot to be desired!

  11. NH isn’t telling you the real truth hidden taxes and hidden problems

  12. J
    Joe biden says:

    Judging from the TV show Northwoods Law, there appears to be a lot of characters straight out of the Burt Reynolds movie Deliverance residing in NH. A nice place to briefly visit, but….

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