Great article in a recent Field & Stream magazine about 5 rifles under $500 which are great out of the box.
Ruger American, Marlin x7, T. C. Venture, Weatherby Vanguard S2, and I can't remember the last but it was NOT a Rem 700.
As someone else suggested, if I were looking for a Rem 700 or Win Model 70, I would look for an older used one. Better quality and better price than the newer versions.
For those in the group listed in F&S, I would vote for the Venture and the Weatherby as I have 1 or each and they are great shooters.