Five Signs You're Ready for Country Living

Relocating is full of choices: big house, small house. Short house, tall house. City house, country house. In regards to the latter, both places have advantages. For those who have only lived in the city, the country may be particularly appealing. The following are five signs you are ready to ditch your metropolis for something a little more down home.

You are tired of neighbors: Neighbors are good for some things – the occasional cup of borrowed sugar, for instance – but they can also cause problems. Loud parties, poor lawn care, their habit of throwing their trash onto your driveway, can all compound and cause feuds that rival those in West Side Story. Country living, however, can relieve some of this strain. Living in the country does not mean you will be free of neighbors, but the space between your houses will allow your neighbors to feel like neighbors instead of like roommates.

You want a bigger yard: A city offers a wide variety of yard selections: from backyards that fit a swing set, a trampoline, and a croquet set, to yards that are just big enough to be your toy poodle's toilet, sizes vary greatly. Still, even the biggest city yard does not compare to a country yard. City yards are measured in feet, country yards are measured in acres. If you are seeking a yard that you can not possibly mow in a single day, a country yard may be for you.

You want your own space: Yes, "Wide Open Spaces" may be a song by the Dixie Chicks, but it's also a dream come true for those who are tired of being bogged down by the claustrophobia of the city life. In the city, houses, condos, and apartments are often crammed together like a sardine box: no one truly has their own space. The opposite is true in the country. You will never find a sardine in the countryside.

You're Sick of the City Life: The city is good for certain things: restaurants, taverns, and shopping malls are all within walking distance. But, a city can also come with its fair share of problems: crime, noise, and pollution are just a few examples. The country, while not necessarily void of the aforementioned issues, is generally less likely to have them. With much less congestion, and far less people, country life is usually much more quiet and much more peaceful: two things that you may have been seeking for quite some time.

You Want Fresh Air: There is country air -air that smells like pine trees and flowers – then there is city air – air that smells like car exhaust and, on good days, Starbucks. While some people may love the latter, others want the former. For anyone who wants air that is truly fresh, country living is your best bet. Far away from traffic, smoke stacks, and semi trucks, country air allows you to breathe freely without wondering what you are actually inhaling.

Whether you are leaving Manhattan for one of those gorgeous Catskill homes and upstate NY real estate or you are headed out of San Francisco for a vineyard retreat, country living is definitely a change from the big city. A change that is usually well worth it.