It’s hard to really get a sense for what living somewhere is like if you’re just visiting. Massachusetts is a popular vacation destination, but hanging out here all year long is a very different experience than just swinging by for a beach weekend. Here are a few things longtime Massachusetts locals with they could tell new residents or anyone hoping to move here.
1. You’ll have to deal with blizzards AND hurricanes.
Not content to merely give us ferocious winters, Mother Nature decided to let us deal with tropical storms and hurricanes too. Newcomers will have to invest in a good pair of snow boots and a sturdy umbrella.
2. But the summers are basically perfect.
Think blazingly hot beach days, cookouts and ice cream from the local shop. We’re lucky to have some of the most amazing coastal destinations in the country and we sure make the most of them.
3. A box of Munchkins will buy you instant friends.
The most popular person in the office/party/car/ will always be the guy who brought the Munchkins. Perfectly shareable and strangely addictive, passing out these doughnut holes will get you instant popularity.
4. It’s kind of expensive to live here, but you get what you pay for.
Pricey rent, expensive homes and famously high taxes means moving to Massachusetts can really beat up your bank account. However, the benefits include great schools, clean streets, amazing natural resources, top-notch medical care and a generally high standard of living.
5. There’s more here than just Boston and Cape Cod.
Central and western Massachusetts comprise more than half the state, but these regions are often overlooked in favor of areas along the coast. If you’re looking to move to Massachusetts, you’ll likely find more land for less money once you tear yourself away from Boston and its suburbs. Plus, it’s gorgeous out west.
6. You’ll probably need a car and the weather will slowly destroy that car.
Unless you live in a major urban center like Boston or Worcester, the chances of you being able to walk anywhere worth going from your home are pretty slim.
We also have snowy winters, which means the roads get a heavy dose of salt and sand in the cold season. All that salt on the roads can eat away at your car and freezing temps can lead to all sorts of things breaking and bursting. Even in the summer, the salty air on the coast and the horrifying potholes created by the winter weather can do some serious damage.
7. You need to learn to handle a rotary correctly.
And no, we don’t call them "round-abouts." Massachusetts is filled with huge rotaries with confusing signs and vague lanes. If you’re going to survive, you need to be able to get in and out of a rotary in one piece and without infuriating your fellow drivers.
8. We don’t really want to hear how it’s done on the West Coast.
Or the Midwest. Or the South. We do things our own way up here in New England and we’re not accepting comment cards.
9. The weather changes all. the. time.
You should take the morning weather report as more of a suggestion than a promise. It could easily be t-shirt weather in the morning and snowing by afternoon.
10. Sharks exist here.
Swimming in certain areas can put you face to face with a shark. Chatham in particular is known for its shark population, so staying aware and observant in the water is a good idea.
11. We’re pretty bright.
Massachusetts leads the nation in terms of college attendance, test scores and the quality of our public schools. We take education seriously and it shows.
12. Moving here will be the best decision you ever make.
Not that we’re biased or anything.
What do you wish you could tell newcomers to Massachusetts? Share with us! For more on life in Massachusetts, check out the
11 reasons why people from this state are the best kind of people you’ll ever meet.
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