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Old 02-11-2014, 06:38 PM   #1
Adirondackiteer
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Anyone live outside of Albany? Advice requested...

There is a slight chance in the future I may have the opportunity to move back to NY. My family is all in NY, and a similar job exists like what I do now in Albany. But I'm not familiar with the area at all, originally from Northern NY. I like a rural setting, I currently drive about 40 miles to the city to work where I am now to live in the country. I'm not sure how Albany compares to the city here, but how far away must one look to get say 20 wooded acres or so somewhat inexpensively? I'd be willing to drive 1hr to maybe an hour and fifteen minutes tops for a great place. Since my family and the mountains are to the north, I'd like to look towards the north to north west but I'm not sure where a good spot to start looking is. A distant view of mountains would be great as well, but not a requirement. What is a requirement is to have enough land for a large garden and enough woods to be sustainable in collecting firewood and to hunt deer of my own land. I strive to have a little self sustaining homestead. So if anyone has any suggestions I'd be grateful.
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Old 02-11-2014, 08:30 PM   #2
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the commute distance from Albany to a place North can be deceiving due to traffic. I live in Saratoga and its about 30 miles to downtown Albany, but depending on the time of day, the commute is about an hour. Much less if you aren't driving at peak traffic times. Saratoga area is pretty expensive for that amount of land. Northern Saratoga County around the Corinth/Hadley area may be decent price-wise for that amount of land. Its where I grew up and hunt. Small communities with all the necessities nearby and within an hours ride of Albany in easy traffic.
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Old 02-11-2014, 09:40 PM   #3
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I live in the Town of Colonie, at the far western edge of Albany County, almost in Schenectady.
As far as 20 acres somewhat inexpensively, what exactly is that? I just bought a 34 acre parcel also in Colonie (half of that with daughter and SIL)...we thought it was a reasonable price. Just down the road a fellow I know is selling 19 acres, he's asking $1.3M, I don't think that is reasonable at all.
Parcels that size are abundant south, southwest and east of Albany, even within your current 40 mile commute. North of Albany is likely not an option, too many developments and McMansions. NW of Albany would be a lengthy commute.
An hour and a quarter could get you to some nice spots near the Catskills or Taconics or even the Berkshires.
Good luck with your search, and if it were me, I would do anything possible to get out of Ohio!!
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:40 PM   #4
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I live to the northwest of the Albany area in Fulton County (Johnstown) & I commute to Albany daily - 50 minutes in the morning, slightly longer in the evening.

You may want to look over in this direction ... housing & land is relatively inexpensive in comparison to the Capital District in general. And it's hop, skip, and a jump to some nice hiking and canoeing in the southern Adirondacks.

Land inside the blue line can be expensive, simply because there's not a lot of it available ... but outside the park you may be able to find something that meets your needs.
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Old 02-11-2014, 11:10 PM   #5
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Just across the hudson (east) is much less developed and relatively inexpensive. I'd look there, south of Troy. The commute is not much distance, but because there are only a few bridges, it can get occasionally get jammed at rush hour.
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:42 AM   #6
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We are pretty familiar with the area south west of Albany into Schoharie County. I think it is your best option for "affordable" rural living if you don't mind the drive. 40 miles south west puts you near the Schoharie Valley. Many people commute to Albany through the "back way" and use route 443. There are also affordable options along the Route 20 corridor 30 -40 miles west of the city especially once you get west of I88.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:07 AM   #7
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A friend of mine has some nice property near the town of Berne, NY.
There's lots of nice country up there in the Helderbergs.
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Old 02-12-2014, 12:08 PM   #8
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Hey thanks fellas for all the replies! Lots of good info!
Quote:
Originally Posted by stripperguy View Post
North of Albany is likely not an option, too many developments and McMansions. NW of Albany would be a lengthy commute.
Thats what I feared looking at google, seems like a lot of sprawl from the city in the directions I was interested in. Ah well. Doesn't kill the deal, just means a little longer commute for trips on my days off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stripperguy View Post
As far as 20 acres somewhat inexpensively, what exactly is that? I just bought a 34 acre parcel also in Colonie (half of that with daughter and SIL)...we thought it was a reasonable price. Just down the road a fellow I know is selling 19 acres, he's asking $1.3M, I don't think that is reasonable at all.
Well I hate to throw out real numbers but what the heck, my numbers might be so out of the ballpark that this might not even work at all, so best to get a realistic idea now. What I could afford might vary quite a bit depending on what happens in my divorce, and what kind of moving deal I might get from this company, etc, but just a ballpark number on the high side of what I could afford lets say is 200k. And I'm more interested in the land than the house, so a small fixer upper would be ok probably. Heck if I had to I could just buy land and live in a camper for a while, but would need at least a building like a pole barn or garage, and well the camper, so land only I'd have to leave some aside, say 150k max, again, just a WAG at this point. So is this even doable in the areas mentioned, does it exist?


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Good luck with your search, and if it were me, I would do anything possible to get out of Ohio!!
Thanks! Yeah I was never thrilled with Ohio, but when I got a good job and started a family here it kind of anchored me though I always wanted to move back home. Been here pretty much since I graduated high school so almost 18 years. Now unfortunately this family is coming to an end. Still a lot of details need to be worked out, and this is all largely dependent on whats going to happen to my son. So moving to NY is still a very big 'if' but at least within the realm of possibility now, and want to familiarize myself with the options as soon as I can.
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Old 02-12-2014, 12:45 PM   #9
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There certainly is a lot of development to the north of Albany. East or west are better bets for a rural atmosphere. Areas like Rensselaerville, Chatham, or Poestenkill.

Commuting to Albany is always a problem from any direction. When I had a contract in the Capitol District, I rearranged my schedule to get in at 7:15 AM. You have to get "off-hours" to beat the traffic. If I were negotiating a full time gig there, I would negotiate something like 6AM - 330PM as part of the deal, if possible.

Good luck!
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Old 02-12-2014, 03:06 PM   #10
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FWIW most in my industry share similar schedules though there are variations. I havent got that far along to learn what this other company does, but in my current position I work 6-6 (both days and nights). Columbus traffic is horrible at rush hour times, I took a temporary normal day position for most of last year and driving home at 4pm I wanted to shoot myself. If I came in a little late after 7 was in the same situation.

But back on shift with about an hour drive I'm on the road 5-6am and no traffic at all, leaving 6-7pm is usually moderate sometimes bad (bad usually only on some weekdays), and on the flip side on nights driving in at 5-6pm usually moderate sometimes bad (bad usually only on some weekdays), and leaving from 6-7am usually no traffic. But thats something I need to find out about this new position, the schedule could make or break it. The only saving grace with my current rotation is that we get a week off nearly every month, and that I can take 32hrs vacation and get to weeks off in a row. And the 12hr days means less trips in which with my long drive equates to fuel and wear and tear savings.
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Old 02-12-2014, 07:14 PM   #11
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Traffic can also depend on where exactly in Albany your place of business is. If you're referring to downtown Albany than yes, traffic can be horrible during the rush hours in every direction.
But if it's on the outskirts of the city, there are a few routes you can use to avoid the major Routes & Interstates, which sometimes are the worst. I live in Colonie, and Centeral Ave (Route 5) is my least favorite road in the world to drive anywhere at anytime, but sometimes it's unavoidable.
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Old 02-13-2014, 04:19 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adirondackiteer View Post
FWIW most in my industry share similar schedules though there are variations. I havent got that far along to learn what this other company does, but in my current position I work 6-6 (both days and nights).
I don't suspect you'd have much issue, if you wound up with that same kind of schedule (6-6).

For daytime, you'd be in before most people are even on the road, and going home after probably 90+% of everyone else.
For the nights, you'd be around the same times, but heading the opposite way (coming in for 6pm, most are on the way home and leaving at 6am the traffic would be on the inbound side if at all, depending on how far out you were).

I remember doing a delivery in Corinth and leaving there at 5-5:30, and coming down the Northway and moving right along while watching the traffic slow and almost stopped the other way, particularly at the 7/I-87 junction (which is one of the worst spots overall on a regular basis).
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Old 07-31-2014, 11:46 PM   #13
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Just a follow up I guess, I thought about this thread after my recent revelation.

I can't remember if I explained it earlier or not, but my wife and I are probably getting divorced. And I've always dreamt about going back to NY, being closer to family, closer to the mountains... Only reason I stayed in Ohio was because I got married and now thats not going to be anymore but now I have a son as well. So far it seems like we'll share parenting time close to 50/50 so we are trying to stay close. But neither of us are finding properties we like or can afford. I really want enough woods to cut my own firewood and hunt on, raise chickens, gardens, and such. I've found only ONE place in a 40 mile diameter that I could afford and has my target of ~25 wooded acres (plus a few more cleared) and it has a dilapidated single-wide mobile home and cottage than arent even worth saving, and not what I would call livable (unless your a raccoon). Rough even for a poor mans hunting camp! Only way I could make it work and be able to afford it is build a large garage with a finished living section maybe (and even then might be pushing my budget).

Then I had the thought just for the heck of it to pick a random place about an hour out from Albany on Realtor.com (I picked Glorversville) and do a search around there using the same parameters. There were several matches! Some that I really like and a whole lot more land than I ever imagined! I thought NY would be more expensive than rural Ohio but it seems to be quite the opposite. Including just land, there was like over 100 hits in NY whereas here there were 5. Seems to be land is going for 1/5th to 1/3rd of the price that it is here.

For example this is about the same price as what I bought my current house for and I have two acres and dont border anything as fantastic as the Adirondack Park! http://www.realtor.com/realestateand...31-30189?row=1 70 acres and bordering the 'Dacks, wow, that is my dream home! Its getting to be at the absolute limit of what I could drive to Albany, but dang. My house might be worth just a little more than that one, but the land difference alone would make that house be worth about 300,000+ here (perhaps even 400k).

Now my wife is getting pretty discouraged finding a place and considering moving back in with her family. If that happens, then my son is hours away anyhow, I just might as well be moving back to NY. Or even if I stay here, I'm toying with the idea of just buying a 30-50 acre lot and maybe having it there for when I retire or after my son moves on to college or something.

Anyhow it got me really excited seeing so much available there, such big wooded lots, and for so little $. Why the heck is Ohio so expensive! While I am excited, it also makes living here even more miserable knowing what I know now. It would be so nice to go hiking whatever weekend I wanted to, or to go out paddling a couple times a week! Compared to maybe 1 trip a year. Grrr. This year looks like no mountains for me at all.
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Old 08-01-2014, 10:30 AM   #14
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Ohio is expensive because freedom doesn't come cheap.
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