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Want to move to the "Safe Haven" that is Vermont? Questions Answered!

Addison County Vermont_pastoral landscape


We’ve been fielding numerous phone calls and emails from would-be-Vermonters.  These are generally folks looking to make a move out of highly populated areas to the “safe haven” of Vermont.  You might be wondering: Where will they work?  Where will they live?  Are they retired or working folks?  Do they have children?  Do they have a connection to Vermont?  But what about the questions we’re getting from those desperate to find peace here in Addison County? If you run into any potential neighbor-transplants, please share this consolidated list of FAQ’s. Let’s welcome them “home” to VT!

Q. I intend to work from home. Will the internet speed allow for that?

The internet connections all around Addison County vary and, in some cases, significantly.  For example, Otelco (google search: Otelco Vermont) generally covers some of the towns to the south and west of Middlebury. They offer DSL, fiber and satellite internet services with varying speed options.  Consolidated Communications covers nearly all of Vermont, offering phone, internet, voice, TV and cloud services.  Xfinity/Comcast is another option. They offer cable, internet and phone, providing very steady and typically strong service. Although there are many options, it’s important to research each location individually. Word for the wise: don’t let your personal cell reception inform your decisions - carrier pockets of reception can be deceiving!

Q. Does FedEx and UPS deliver here?

The simple answer is yes. Both companies will deliver to a household.  We recommend making sure that your house is clearly marked and if there are special instructions for delivery you should make that clear to the delivery service!  There are still areas of Vermont that haven’t been mapped quite properly, so GPS isn’t always reliable.

Q. Who maintains the dirt roads?  Will I get plowed out in time to get to work?

In most cases, the dirt roads in any town are maintained by the town itself.  Most are class 2 or class 3 roads and each town typically has a road foreman and road crew responsible for the plowing/sanding in the winter and grading/maintenance in other months.  However, if your dirt road is a shared driveway there is likely a road maintenance agreement among the neighbors. These agreements can be simple or complicated so be sure to review an agreement before purchase to make sure you understand your cost obligation.  If your driveway is plowed by a private vendor, we always recommend you communicate your time constraints. In snowy weather you’ll often see these hard working folks out in the wee hours of the morning to be sure their clients can get out of their driveways safely!

Q. What kind of recreation opportunities exist here?

In addition to the Trail Around Middlebury ( which is a nature lover’s paradise, there are miles and miles of roads for cycling (pavement and gravel), many local hiking spots (Snake Mountain, Silver Lake, Skylight Pond, etc.), swimming and boating (Lake Champlain and Lake Dunmore), great kayaking (Fern Lake, Otter Creek, etc.), trail running, downhill and x-country skiing, tennis and pickleball (both have very active clubs) plus two larger fitness centers (Middlebury Fitness and Vermont Sun).  If exercise is important to you there is no shortage of options in Addison County!

Q. What is the status of the construction in downtown Middlebury?

The current construction in Middlebury is a bridge/rail project, expected to be completed during the construction season in 2021.  With COVID-19 related restrictions combined with the construction project, the downtown commercial district has taken a hit. Our retail and hospitality is important to us; we encourage all to shop, dine, and stay local, whenever possible. Check out the free shuttle - it will get you where you need to go (especially helpful with currently limited parking). You’ll find the routes here:  Middlebury will emerge stronger, benefit from the added amenities, and showcase an even more beautiful downtown, when construction in complete!


Thinking of buying in Addison County? A current resident? You might relate to questions such as these! We’d like to hear what your considerations are/were, to best help those considering a move... Let us know! EMAIL:

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