Upstate NY Anyone???

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by fourangels, Jan 19, 2005.

  1. fourangels

    fourangels Member

    Jan 10, 2005
    We live in Zone 6 (CT) and are a family of 6 currently looking to relocate to uspstate NY near VT. WE plan to eventually be self sufficient as far as energy is concerned. Also growing our own vegetables and having our own animals. Anyone from that area ? We are looking for an area with fertile land, eventualy to become organic, We would like to hear from folks from that area regarding taxes, housing prices, heating costs etc...

    Thanks All

  2. Reformed_Farmer

    Reformed_Farmer Member

    Jan 10, 2005
    We live in Upstate. We're in Broome Co. Thats near Binghamton. No good soil here. I've had friends that lived in the north country, they report lots of rocks, snow, and a short growing season. I grew up in Western NY. Its flat, great soil, good growing season. So, why did I move you ask? Taxes, zoning, and suburbs we're expanding into our farm. So we moved were the land was cheap, taxes low, no zoning.........crapy soil. We had to change over to pasture based system for our dairy. In the end I'm glad we did. There is alot of farms out here that have not been worked in many years and would be easy to certify organic.

  3. spring77

    spring77 Well-Known Member

    Feb 6, 2004
    If you want to live near Vermont I think Washington County is your best bet. I worked on an organic vegetable farm in Argyle in 2000. Obviously I didn't buy land or pay any taxes or anything but I think that is your best bet. South of there in Columbia County you start to have much higher land prices because people live there and commute to the city. The western side of Washington county is more expensive than the Vermont side for the same reason, its closer to the Northway and Saratoga Springs. If you are growing for market the Saratoga Farmers Market is fantastic if you can stand the waiting list to get in.
    The soil is heavy and shaley. It can grow good crops though if you are careful. There are also patches of really good bottomland soils along the kills, they flood a lot though so don't plant anything like berries or fruit. Cooperative extension is really decent for a change, or at least is was 4 years ago. Schools are so so from what I could tell of the kids from Argyle Central School who worked at the farm. You can get lots of enthusiastic if totally clueless help from Skidmore students from Saratoga who are looking for an "agricultural experience". The Washington County Fair is great, theres lots of dairy farms around the area still and its still pretty much an agricultural county rather than a commuter bedroom county like they are further south. As far as hard numbers go I cannot help you.
    Good luck.
  4. Shygal

    Shygal Unreality star Supporter

    May 26, 2003
    New York
    Taxes are VERY high in NY and VT. I wanted to move back to NY but I dont think I can afford it :(
    The plus side is, houses are relatively inexpensive.
  5. sheeplady

    sheeplady Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2003
    New York State
    We live in New York State, but further south. In Delaware County by a NYC reservoir. Our property abuts the watershed lands. Very private AND low taxes as the city pays a large portion of the towns tax base. Less than $1000.00 for all the property taxes! :) Our place will be for sale in about 18 months as we are relocating upstate to my late uncles farm and will be nearer my children there.
    Our property: House ( 4-5 bedrooms, 1 1/2 baths, two wood stoves, ones a cook stove) new oil furnace, new HW heater,new well, also spring line to house, 1 1/2 car garage with workbench and woodstove hookup. A large barn, new metal roof, with automatic frostfree waterers and 5 acres of hi-tensile fence.Several outbuildings as well. We currently have sheep and geese here. In the past I have had chickens, turkeys, cows, goats, beehives and several large vegetable gardens. Land: 33 acres, nice duck pond, large brook running through, great spring.
    Property has never had chemicals on it, great if you are considering growing organic.
    And we are only 30 minutes from state route 17 if you need to get to Conneticut easily.
    Schools are good, all three of my kids graduated from here and went on to college.
    Want to know more? PM me. Kate
  6. diane greene

    diane greene Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2002
    If you are planning to farm for profit you can qualify for a 50% tax rebate from the state. NY is very farmer freindly. Contact Northeast Organic Farmers Association or Regional Farm & Food Project or call them at 518-427-6537. These groups often have classifieds for farm sales and can help you decide on the best products for the area you choose.
    The real money comes from suppling places like NYC with organic meat and artisan cheeses, very little money in things like CSA's and road side stands. You will have to be willing to travel to sell your products and becoming a good salesperson/marketer will be as important as being a good farmer.
  7. Cindy in NY

    Cindy in NY Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    We live in Washington County and have about the highest property taxes of any county around here. There is very very retail in the county so very little sales tax revenue. Housing is relatively inexpensive and at least here we have very good soil. If you go into Warren County or Saratoga County, the taxes are less but the housing is much more expensive. There is also a lot more farm land in Washington County than in either of those.

    We don't usually put anything in the ground (except maybe peas) until about June 1st. By the end of September, the garden is usually done but we can extend some things by covering. Average snowfall is 65 inches but two years ago we got over 100! :eek: The extension service here is helpful but at least in this county they have relatively few hours when they are available. Before we moved up here, I sent them a letter with some questions about gardening and they reponded very quickly.

    From what I have seen of Vermont land and home prices, they are far more than I would want to pay.