Considering a move to Vermont? You’re not alone—this serene state is becoming a hotspot for those seeking a high-quality, laid-back lifestyle.
Vermont is a state located in the northeastern region of the United States, bordered by New Hampshire to the east, Massachusetts to the south, and New York to the west.
It is the sixth smallest state in terms of land area, but it has a population of approximately 650,000 people, making it the second smallest state in terms of population.
Vermont is known for its rolling green mountains, charming small towns, and diverse natural beauty, including forests, lakes, and streams.
The state is divided into 14 counties, the largest city being Burlington, located on the shores of Lake Champlain.
Vermont is also home to several smaller towns and villages, including Montpelier, the state capital, and Stowe, a popular ski destination.
The state has a strong agricultural tradition, with dairy farming as a major industry and a growing craft beer and artisanal food scene.
Vermont is also home to several colleges and universities, including the University of Vermont and Middlebury College.
Is Vermont a good place to live?
Vermont is often considered to offer the highest quality of life among all U.S. states, especially if you’re someone who thrives in an “outdoorsy” setting rather than an urban environment.
It’s a haven for activities like hiking, fishing, camping, and even hunting. But it might not be everyone’s cup of tea, particularly if you’re young, single, or used to the conveniences of city living.
Here, you’ll have to forego some modern amenities: think 24/7 stores, state-of-the-art medical facilities, or quick food delivery services. High-speed internet and gourmet coffee shops?
Those are more of a luxury than a given. Make sure you invest in a good set of tires and an all-wheel-drive vehicle, because you’ll need them to navigate the state’s challenging roads.
Although living here can be costly, most Vermonters will tell you it’s worth every cent. Crime rates are low, often limited to sporadic incidents that are more desperate than dangerous.
If you’re looking for a shopping spree or more urban activities, you might have to cross state lines.
Sure, Burlington is an attractive option, but its distance makes it an impractical day trip for many.
Be prepared for winding, often bumpy roads that are perennially under construction.
Now, let’s check detalien pros and cons of living in Vermont.
Pros of Living in Vermont
Though it is one of the smallest states in the country, Vermont offers plenty of reasons to live there. Here are seven pros of living in Vermont:
If you love nature, Vermont will feel like a dream come true.
This state is a visual treat, with picturesque landscapes and awe-inspiring mountain ranges.
Vermont is known for its lush green forests, sparkling lakes, and stunning rivers.
People come to Vermont just to see the famous fall foliage, which is magnificent in October.
The white snow blanket covers the state in winter and makes the entire place look insanely beautiful.
Every season comes a new set of activities, making Vermont a year-round destination.
Summers are perfect for hiking, biking, and swimming in natural lakes.
Fall is the season to witness the famous fall foliage, which leaves the entire state looking like a postcard.
Winter is perfect for skiing, snowboarding, and ice skating on frozen lakes.
Spring is the time to enjoy the beautiful gardens and to experience the maple syrup season.
Sense of Community
The people in Vermont are incredibly friendly and welcoming.
It’s where neighbors know each other and often come together to celebrate community events.
People embrace the community spirit and work together to improve the state.
Traditional festivals like the Vermont Maple and Apple Harvest Festival bring everyone together to celebrate the state’s culture and history.
Great Education System
Vermont offers a great education system, high in quality and diverse.
The state has one of the highest literacy rates in the United States, with some of the finest schools, colleges, and universities.
For instance, the University of Vermont, Middlebury College, and Champlain College are some of the top-ranked and sought-after institutions.
Vermont is one of the healthiest states in the United States.
With plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities, the state encourages its people to lead a healthy lifestyle.
Farmers’ markets and co-ops are popular, and farm-to-table dining is common in Vermont.
Locally sourced fresh produce and meats are readily available.
Vermont has the lowest obesity rate in the country, and its residents have a high life expectancy.
Low Crime Rates
According to data from the FBI, Vermont is one of the safest states in the USA.
The state’s low crime rate is one of the main reasons people choose to move here.
Vermont’s remote and sparsely populated areas accentuate its natural beauty and give residents a sense of peace and security.
However, like any other state, there is still illegal activity, but overall, Vermont is a relatively safe place.
If you’re dreaming of big city life and jobs at massive corporations, Vermont might not be your jam.
But don’t write it off just yet! There’s a thriving scene of small businesses, startups, and local companies always on the lookout for talent.
Among the major employers in the area, you’ll find the University of Vermont Health Network, GlobalFoundries, and IBM.
It’s also worth noting that Vermont enjoys a low unemployment rate, thanks in part to its strong tourism and agricultural sectors.
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Cons of Living in Vermont
Like any other place, living in Vermont has its downsides. Here are the cons of living in Vermont:
Harsh winter weather
Vermont has some of the harshest winters in the United States, with an average low temperature of 12°F in January.
The state sees an average of 81 inches of snowfall each winter, making it difficult to commute, shovel driveways, and walk around.
The cold weather and icy roads can also cause power outages.
High cost of living
The cost of living in Vermont is generally considered to be higher than the national average, with an estimated cost of living index of 108.4 (the national average is 100).
The cost of living in Vermont is about 8.4% higher than the national average.
However, the cost of living can vary significantly within the state, with specific areas, such as the Burlington area, having a higher cost of living than others.
One of the main factors contributing to the higher cost of living in Vermont is the high cost of housing.
The median home price in Vermont is around $374,414 (according to Zillow), which is significantly lower than the national median of $428,700.
Rent prices in Vermont are also relatively high, with the median monthly rent being around $2,000.
Other costs, such as groceries, healthcare, and transportation, are generally higher in Vermont than the national average.
For example, the average price for a gallon of gas in Vermont is around $3.40, which is about $1.4 higher than the national average.
Vermont is one of the whitest states in the country.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Vermont’s population is 94% white, with limited racial and ethnic diversity.
This lack of diversity can make it challenging for individuals from diverse backgrounds to feel accepted and can limit access to resources and opportunities.
Limited access to healthcare
Healthcare costs in Vermont are among the highest in the country, with the average monthly premium for a single person being around $450.
There just aren’t enough doctors and nurses to go around, so getting top-notch medical care can be tough.
Trying to bring in new medical students? Good luck. The state’s having a hard time with that.
And the doctors who are here? They’re swamped with patients. Don’t be surprised if it takes ages to get an appointment.
Limited nightlife and entertainment
Vermont is a state that prides itself on its natural beauty, local food, and outdoor recreation.
However, the state lacks vibrant nightlife and entertainment, especially in rural areas.
Nightclubs and large music venues are scarce, and many agricultural areas have few restaurants and bars and due to the cold winters and limited transportation options, it can be challenging to travel to neighboring states for entertainment.
Limited access to public transportation
Vermont is a rural state with limited public transportation infrastructure.
The state has no major highways and limited public transportation options, making it challenging for individuals without a car to travel to work, school, or access healthcare.
The state’s bus and train services are limited, with some areas having no public transportation access.
Vermont stands as one of the most desirable havens for a peaceful and relaxing life in the U.S. Its lush landscapes, outdoor activities, and strong sense of community offer a unique and fulfilling lifestyle.
But if you’re looking for a locale with a more active nightlife or certain conveniences we’ve got you covered. Check out our other guides for places that might better suit your pace of life: