Where should I move to in MT?

peterk1234

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124
In my previous life, I practiced real estate law for about 10 years, so I tend to keep an eye on the residential real estate market. Personally, I'd be reluctant to make a cross-country move right now, especially to a "hot" area like Montana. What we're seeing now in residential real estate feels very different to me than what we saw from past run-ups in prices, and I don't have confidence about where it will go from here. And it's not just Montana. Whether it is mountain properties, lake houses, beach houses, farmettes, or any other type of residential property that might fit an urban dweller's image of "the good life," existing homes are flying off the market in all parts of the country. A tremendous number of companies and employees have tasted teleworking in the last year and most of them appear to like the flavor. For some employees, it means they only have to commute downtown two days a week now instead of five. For others, it means they only have to show up at the office a few times a year. Either way, there are millions of employees now who have a lot more options about where they can live, and it seems many of them are cashing out of their residences in major metro areas and moving to the hinterlands. But I'm not confident it's sustainable because much of the current pricing seems to be the result of short inventories and ridiculously high lumber and construction prices. But supply is not constant and neither are lumber prices and interest rates. And in the case of Montana, in particular, I have a hunch some of the transplants will find real-life winters out here much different than the vacation-winters they know from their vacations in Big Sky (or maybe I'm just hoping that).

As a relative newcomer to the state myself, a couple of other thoughts on a few topics touched upon in this thread:

1) I think Discovery Ski Area near Anaconda is one of the best "local ski hills" in America. When I used to fly out west for a week-long ski vacation, I loved places like Jackson Hole, Big Sky, Alta/Snowbird, Breckenridge, etc. (and still like those places, occasionally). But when you can only ski one week out of the year, lift ticket prices don't matter much. But now that I can ski, literally, every weekend of the season, I find my enthusiasm for $140 lift tickets has waned. I'll take Discovery's $350 season pass and ski the crap out of that mountain all season while taking a weekend trip or two to Jackson Hole or Salt Lake City.

2) Butte. Oh, man, Butte. (I don't live there, but I work there) It is a difficult town to accurately describe. It is the best of towns and the worst of towns all at the same time. For all its faults, and it has many, it is still a genuine Montana town. Of Montana's "large" towns, it is probably the only one that doesn't feel terribly different today than it did 20 years ago. If it is still possible to "get in on the ground floor" of a Montana city, Butte provides the opportunity. Butte doesn't advertise its outdoors options the way Bozeman and Missoula do, but make no mistake, it has plenty. But it is legitimately cold. -30 and -40 degree mornings happen virtually every winter.


I think there is another potential issue to add to you statement regarding the new work at home crowd. The risk the employers will figure out how ineffective it is. It may work for some industries, but one has to wonder if the inefficiencies and lack of employee interaction (brain drain), will force a back to the office movement in another three years. Then all of the folks who moved will need to make a major life decision. There will also be the people that figure out working from home ain't all that great. Most people require social interaction, more than just with their kids and spouse. Potentially, a massive impact on the rural market.
 

HSi-ESi

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Corvallis, MT
I think there is another potential issue to add to you statement regarding the new work at home crowd. The risk the employers will figure out how ineffective it is. It may work for some industries, but one has to wonder if the inefficiencies and lack of employee interaction (brain drain), will force a back to the office movement in another three years. Then all of the folks who moved will need to make a major life decision. There will also be the people that figure out working from home ain't all that great. Most people require social interaction, more than just with their kids and spouse. Potentially, a massive impact on the rural market.

I've been a remote worker since 2005. I averaged about 100K per year on airlines - and many customers are on the east coast - so it was 16-20 hours of travel per week. Granted, I didn't travel every week - but it was on average 3 weeks per month. I have been able to do everything remotely - especially for the last 10 years. But customers like the face-to-face time - and I don't blame them. The last year has shown to them that I don't need to be onsite. I can get everything done for them that is required and not be on-site.

I haven't been on a plane in a year - all my work is remote. Some conf. calls have people from 3 continents on the call and we all work through the items real time. So for efficiencies sake - I am way more productive without the travel. I can keep more clients moving on projects than when I was travelling. My hours are crazy, some calls are in the middle of the night - but it beats sitting in some TSA line.

I'm sure it will balance out over time - and some travel will resume. I get enough social interaction with being involved in the community (almost more) - then when I was jumping around on different time zones.
 

mtmuley

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montana
I've been a remote worker since 2005. I averaged about 100K per year on airlines - and many customers are on the east coast - so it was 16-20 hours of travel per week. Granted, I didn't travel every week - but it was on average 3 weeks per month. I have been able to do everything remotely - especially for the last 10 years. But customers like the face-to-face time - and I don't blame them. The last year has shown to them that I don't need to be onsite. I can get everything done for them that is required and not be on-site.

I haven't been on a plane in a year - all my work is remote. Some conf. calls have people from 3 continents on the call and we all work through the items real time. So for efficiencies sake - I am way more productive without the travel. I can keep more clients moving on projects than when I was travelling. My hours are crazy, some calls are in the middle of the night - but it beats sitting in some TSA line.

I'm sure it will balance out over time - and some travel will resume. I get enough social interaction with being involved in the community (almost more) - then when I was jumping around on different time zones.
I bet people that can work as you do are a large part of the new immigrants to Montana. I'm praying for one Hell of an ass kicking winter. mtmuley
 

Straight Arrow

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Gallatin Gateway, MT
You do realize the title to this thread is about moving to Montana. Unless you were born here, you came from somewhere else...
Thread implication also alludes to assimilating in chosen state of Montana, rather than imposing New Jersey, Maryland, and California values on a state with a rich legacy and a history of protecting the lands, outdoors, and code of the West Montana last best place values. Do you realize that?!
 

Gerald Martin

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What are the "Code of the West" Montana values? mtmuley
Kill wolves. Fill the freezer with elk. Complain about the California emigrees as an emigrant from a different state. Enjoy the mountains from a federally maintained road and expect to shoot a 4x4 mule deer from same road during a six week rifle season. Complain about too many other people doing the same thing.
Wave to folks on the road with two fingers raised from the steering wheel. Pull folks out of the ditch when they slide off the road. Help your neighbor get his calves back in the pasture when they get out.
Catch trout. Release trout. Or, eat trout.
Drink either the cheapest beer possible or an expensive micro-brew with lots of hops.
Complain about the price of beef being too high in the store. Complain about the price of beef being too low on the market.
Complain about the price of gas. Complain about the price of diesel.
Complain about the Democrats in Congress.
Complain about the Republicans in Helena.
Be an expert with an infallible opinion on all things rifle and caliber related.
Mock 6.5 Creedmor.
Shoot a .300 Win Mag. or 30-06 or else reload for your favorite wildcat.
Complain about Californians.

Did I miss anything?😁
 

Straight Arrow

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Gallatin Gateway, MT
What are the "Code of the West" Montana values? mtmuley

CODE OF THE NEW WEST​

As good citizens of Montana, we promise to:

1. Appreciate the splendor of Montana's natural beauty; the opportunity to live here; the quality of life we enjoy.

2. Be a good steward of the land; take personal responsibility for keeping our land weed and trash free; promote recycling.

3. Show respect for our state and local laws, for wildlife, for the land and for the people ... especially those engaged in farming and ranching.

4. Be goodwill ambassadors, showing friendliness to visitors and neighbors alike.

5. Take pride in how we maintain our property, our businesses, our communities, and ourselves.

6. Become informed about how things are done in our communities and in the state, so that we fully understand the realities of living in rural Montana.

7. Take political action: read, vote, become informed, participate when necessary, to preserve and improve the good things we have.

8. Get involved with our communities, to give back some measure of what we receive from being a part of the larger family.

9. Work together for the good of the whole, neighborhood, community, county, state, nation and world.

~ excerpt from "Gallatin County's Code of the West"
 

Gerald Martin

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CODE OF THE NEW WEST​

As good citizens of Montana, we promise to:

1. Appreciate the splendor of Montana's natural beauty; the opportunity to live here; the quality of life we enjoy.

2. Be a good steward of the land; take personal responsibility for keeping our land weed and trash free; promote recycling.

3. Show respect for our state and local laws, for wildlife, for the land and for the people ... especially those engaged in farming and ranching.

4. Be goodwill ambassadors, showing friendliness to visitors and neighbors alike.

5. Take pride in how we maintain our property, our businesses, our communities, and ourselves.

6. Become informed about how things are done in our communities and in the state, so that we fully understand the realities of living in rural Montana.

7. Take political action: read, vote, become informed, participate when necessary, to preserve and improve the good things we have.

8. Get involved with our communities, to give back some measure of what we receive from being a part of the larger family.

9. Work together for the good of the whole, neighborhood, community, county, state, nation and world.

~ excerpt from "Gallatin County's Code of the West"
Ain’t nobody got time for that!
 

mtmuley

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Jan 11, 2009
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Location
montana

CODE OF THE NEW WEST​

As good citizens of Montana, we promise to:

1. Appreciate the splendor of Montana's natural beauty; the opportunity to live here; the quality of life we enjoy.

2. Be a good steward of the land; take personal responsibility for keeping our land weed and trash free; promote recycling.

3. Show respect for our state and local laws, for wildlife, for the land and for the people ... especially those engaged in farming and ranching.

4. Be goodwill ambassadors, showing friendliness to visitors and neighbors alike.

5. Take pride in how we maintain our property, our businesses, our communities, and ourselves.

6. Become informed about how things are done in our communities and in the state, so that we fully understand the realities of living in rural Montana.

7. Take political action: read, vote, become informed, participate when necessary, to preserve and improve the good things we have.

8. Get involved with our communities, to give back some measure of what we receive from being a part of the larger family.

9. Work together for the good of the whole, neighborhood, community, county, state, nation and world.

~ excerpt from "Gallatin County's Code of the West"
Pretty sure the "influx" isn't adhering to the code. When was that written? mtmuley
 

Straight Arrow

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Messages
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Gallatin Gateway, MT
Pretty sure the "influx" isn't adhering to the code. When was that written? mtmuley
IIRC, sometime twenty or so years ago, when Montana and Gallatin County in particular began to realize a surge in growth. The Code of the West was first written about by the western author Zane Grey who pointed to an unspoken code for those moving to the West that basically involved an attitude of integrity, honor, and self reliance.
 

Rancho Loco

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Sep 2, 2010
Messages
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Location
Bozeman, MT
That code wasn't written in the 1860's in Lakota, Dakota or Nakota.

And for a point of reference, I still haven't seen a "California money not welcome" sign yet.
 

nick87

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Joined
Dec 12, 2014
Messages
3,528
Location
Northern Illinois
Kill wolves. Fill the freezer with elk. Complain about the California emigrees as an emigrant from a different state. Enjoy the mountains from a federally maintained road and expect to shoot a 4x4 mule deer from same road during a six week rifle season. Complain about too many other people doing the same thing.
Wave to folks on the road with two fingers raised from the steering wheel. Pull folks out of the ditch when they slide off the road. Help your neighbor get his calves back in the pasture when they get out.
Catch trout. Release trout. Or, eat trout.
Drink either the cheapest beer possible or an expensive micro-brew with lots of hops.
Complain about the price of beef being too high in the store. Complain about the price of beef being too low on the market.
Complain about the price of gas. Complain about the price of diesel.
Complain about the Democrats in Congress.
Complain about the Republicans in Helena.
Be an expert with an infallible opinion on all things rifle and caliber related.
Mock 6.5 Creedmor.
Shoot a .300 Win Mag. or 30-06 or else reload for your favorite wildcat.
Complain about Californians.

Did I miss anything?😁
Pick me pick me. I can do all of that and well.
 

RobG

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Joined
Dec 10, 2010
Messages
5,053
Location
Bozeman, MT
There is some merit to the multi generational Montana claim. When you have deep roots you are ingrained in the culture. When people move here the first thing they want to do is change it so it’s like where they came from.

In addition they overpay for everything because of their disproportionate wealth. My friends home in CA is worth $3 million and he could buy the same one in MT for an order of magnitude less. And nowadays he could work from a home hobby ranch in MT.

disclaimer, I’ve been working remotely for about twenty years.
 

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