Where to move?

For fun, for now, because we’re stuck here just a little longer. I need a list of places to visit when the time comes.

I do not want to be cold and wet 6+ months of the year anymore. Cold and dry is fine, a little rain sometimes is fine, snow is also fine, but I am done with the constant rain (and thus, mud) and darkness from September to June that western PNW living brings. I’m tired of being perpetually damp and tired. I don’t mind the heat.

No crazy high cost of living areas, I’d like to buy property capable of keeping several horses and am accustomed to keeping them at home. I don’t need lush grass. Within a few hours of an OK horse scene would be preferred, but I don’t need to be in a mecca of sporthorse training. I’m more the haul in once or twice a month for lessons type, dressage now but maybe eventing again someday. I also enjoy trail riding and generally playing around in lots of different activities.

I don’t really want to move to a place where tornados or severe hurricanes frequently visit. :joy:

Where should I look?



Do you like dry heat or hot and humid? Areas of Virginia or Maryland might be nice. Maryland might be too expensive but there are very affordable parts of VA. You get all 4 seasons but nothing to extreme weather wise. If I had no ties to where I live now, that’s probably the state I’d go to.

Extreme SE Ohio. I’m 3 miles from West Virginia. The rolling hills are gorgeous, only one really hot summer month, and a winter so mild my hubby and I never got out of hoodies.

Bought 144 acre place, with a nice home, and plenty of out buildings for almost the same as what we sold our 10 acre place in Michigan


Either or, DH does not really like humidity but IMO he would adapt just fine.

@Ponycatraz 144 acres? :astonished: I wouldn’t know what to do with that kind of space! I’ve never looked at Ohio, off to go do that now.

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Do you care about politics? Alabama is as nutty as TN with better Healthcare options and a beach. Cheap, and we’re idiots for using covid relief money for new prisons. But we’re cheap and beautiful. Oh, I forgot you don’t want scary weather.



Yeah we were looking all across the US and ended up here! So far we’ve been cutting trails out and have done pretty fantastic riding just at our own place. I’d like to reclaim the hay fields but they have been feral for awhile.

Go a bit west of where we are and you are close to Kentucky. We are less than 2 hrs from Hocking Hill and Elkins, and the WEC Ohio facility.

It’s been a great location for us!


If tornados are a concern, I’d check that off the list in a hurry.

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Maryland gets a bad rap for being expensive, but it’s not as bad as people make it out to be. You get a lot of bang for your buck. Land values are only over inflated in a few select areas with access to DC & Baltimore. Plus, owning horses is very economical here because competition for services keeps prices in check.

I’ve lived in both VA and MD and think either is a great place to have horses, especially compared to other states where I have lived.

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[quote=“Heinz_57, post:5, topic:764920”] I’ve never looked at Ohio, off to go do that now.

Two of my closest friends both relocated to Ohio. One owns horses, the other doesn’t. I was pleasantly surprised at how decent it seemed for horses. After spending time there, I would be open to it.

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Central Oregon? Eastern Washington or the Tri Cities area might do as well.

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I agree with Texarkana - I’m currently in Maryland and it appears to be horse heaven. If you don’t live in one of DC’s suburbs, there are a lot of rural, cheap areas. Four seasons but generally mild winters. Pastures and paddocks to die for. Lots of excellent competition and vet options (something to consider after reading the horror stories on the “my vet is no longer doing farm calls” thread).

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It rains a lot on the east coast and the southeast. Just sayin’.

I mean, it’s not like PNW, but it’s not unusual to have rain 2-3 days a week in the winter. Is that a lot for you? It is for me!

So yes, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina are lovely…but you said you wanted to get out of the rain.

Oh! And I might suggest looking at Colorado/New Mexico. Everyone thinks it’s SO COLD in these places, but really it’s not. Winters can be long, but the highs are generally in the 40’s and it’s super sunny most of the time. Yes, it’s expensive in certain areas, but it’s not too bad if you go off the beaten path.

That being said, it’s far from being a “horse mecca.” It might be challenging to find good trainers, vets, and farriers in certain parts. And the ground is dang hard. But everything is a tradeoff.


This is the site we used to help pick out where to live. They don’t just do averages so you get a pretty good look at what the weather really is. They even include wind charts so you can see if where you are looking at has high winds in the winter which might make those nicer temperatures miserable.

Once we found a bunch of places we liked the weather we looked at Sales Tax, Income Tax, and Property Tax. States that have reciprocal tax agreements with the state I work in was nice but not necessary.

We ended up with about 5 areas we really liked. Set some filters on Zillow and scrolled through those areas until we found the right place for us!

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LOL your list of issues is the SAME as ours was, as impetus for leaving the PNW from just north of you! We moved further north. It was very cheap when we moved here, but property values have doubled in the last few years. And our area has motivated buyers who seem to snap up real estate quickly now when it comes available with the mass exodus from the Lower Fraser Valley.

Good luck with your decisions. Our horses live outdoors year round now, no mud issues. No stall mucking, just some paddock picking in the summer months. We cross country ski in the winter. Very happy with the move. However I am one of those with limited veterinary access, we accepted that when we moved here.

I used the “Pleasant Places to Live” web site to check out weather across the country before I moved last time. https://kellegous.com/j/2014/02/03/pleasant-places/

If I’ve learned one thing reading discussions like this here at COTH it’s that one person’s hell is another person’s heaven. I’ve seen people say horrible things about places that I lived and thought were great and people say wonderful things about places I’ve lived and thought were awful.

Another thing to remember is that many states have very diverse geography and weather, and in some cases, even culture. I often see people post something about a particular state that may only apply to part of the state.

But, it’s fun to look. I really enjoyed looking at the Pleasant Places to Live map and investigating different locations when I was planning my last move. I never did find one single location that I thought was perfect all year round, but for me, Ludington, MI is perfect for summer and Sarasota, FL is perfect for winter. But, snowbirding doesn’t fit my lifestyle.

FWIW, I ended up in western NC. I mostly love it, but @DawgLady is right about the rain. Winter isn’t that cold, but it can be a real mud slog and you might as well take January and February off if you don’t have a covered arena.

Completely fascinating. There goes my day! LOL

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:joy: For me, 35 years of rain, mud, and darkness is about enough. I love sunshine and the grayness gives me SAD.

Lots of good ideas here! I am definitely checking the average rainfall (and days of rain) of any potential places against what I have now, along with taxes and jobs and all the other considerations.

Yep jobs are the issue where we moved. Average household income is less than 40k. Wasn’t an issue for us as we both work remote.