Shop Til You Drop

We left early Friday morning for another property shopping trip and looked at a total of 8 properties. By the end of the day Saturday, I was exhausted. We saw some beautiful properties, but each of them had something that just didn’t appeal to us. Not that we are expecting to find any property that is absolute perfection, but these properties had some big things missing or some problem we just couldn’t deal with.

On Friday we looked at three properties.

The first property was nice and although it didn’t have a pond, there was a spot that could very easily become a pond. It was down a road that had several other nice homes along the road and once a portion of the land was cleared of the trees, we would have had some nice privacy. What we wouldn’t have, was the view we are hoping to get. We would simply be nestled amongst the trees, which isn’t a bad thing, but not what we want.

The second property had way too many negatives to list, so I’ll just say that we only visited for maybe 5 minutes before driving away.

The third property had some potential, until we started walking closer to the pond and discovered how marshy the land was. We had too much concern about flooding and just weren’t sure where we could build without flooding being a potential problem.

Saturday morning we were up bright and early and at the realtor’s office shortly after 9:00. We headed out to property #1, which was the property we were most excited about seeing.

Getting to the property required that we cross a beautiful creek that winds its way thru the country and is part of the property. As we pulled into the driveway, about a dozen wild turkey began running and flew away over the trees. It was a spectacular site and we were immediately drawn to this beautiful piece of land. The property sits at the top of a hill, overlooking the Ozarks. It has a pond on the property, which we could only get a glimpse of because of the overgrowth, which means we would have some work clearing things off. There was a lot of open land for farming. For a matter-of-fact, a chicken coop is already on the property, along with a storage shed. The girls loved the swing hanging from one of the big trees and there was a play house for the kids. We began walking the trail thru the woods, leading to the creek. About 33 acres of trees which has deer stands and turkey blinds set up. After a walk up and back down the hill, we finally arrived to the creek. It was gorgeous, which a large rock bar and I could imagine many summer days spent at the creek fishing for perch, crawfish and looking for turtles. As perfect as the property sounds though, there were some problems, the biggest of which was one of the neighbors. This neighbor owns cattle and decided that he owned the creek, so he put fencing up to allow his cattle free access to the water. He only owns the land to the middle of the creek and the property owners took him to court, spent thousands of dollars and the end result was an agreement that he could leave up the fencing and put up a gate giving the property owners access to the creek. It just wasn’t a good deal in our book and was now deeded that way, so the new owners would be buying property that ran to the middle of the creek, but could only access the creek by going thru a gate and climbing thru barbed wire fencing. There was also the problem of crossing the creek twice getting to the property which does flood and would make the road impassable during heavy rains. So we drove away saying no to the property that had so much going for it.

We drove onto the next property with an old rustic cabin sitting up on the hill overlooking another creek. There wasn’t easy access to the creek and all the open land sat at the bottom of a steep hill. Every time I went to my garden I would be hiking up and down the hill. It would have been great exercise, but also very inconvenient. The land would have been great for sheep and okay for goats though.

The next property was so unimpressive, that I can’t even remember details of the property, but the fourth property was intriguing. I found a nice spot for building that would have give us a beautiful view and there was a nice trail going thru the approximately 49 acres of woods. There was a small pond on the property, but we would once again need to go a lot of clearing to access the pond. The bigger problem was the neighbors property which was very run down. We would be looking at that property every day and it also meant less privacy on our property than what we are hoping to get.

The last property would have offered us some great views, but the owner has been running a logging operation (which the realtor didn’t realize until we went to look at the property). He has cleared a nice spot for building, but has also taken a lot of other trees off the property that would have been better left. It was off a heavily travelled highway and would make an awesome location for a roadside stand. However, it also means contending with a lot of traffic noise up and down the highway. Since we have no plans for a roadside stand and don’t want to listen to cars and trucks all day and night, we said no.

With that, our weekend of shopping was done and we now know of 8 properties we don’t want to purchase which puts us that much closer to finding that one property we really want to buy.

We also had the opportunity to talk to a couple of folks from the area who gave us some great information that will help us as we move forward in our search. Information can be a powerful tool when used correctly.

After a good night’s sleep, we packed up and headed back to Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co. They have a festival the first Sunday of each month from spring thru fall. There were vendors selling plants, homemade baked goods, crafts, herbal creams, and much more. They had live music and of course the store was open for buying seeds. We met up with some friends and spent the day enjoying each other’s company as we browsed the vendor tents. Eventually, I made my way into the seed store and came out with 14 packets of herb seeds along with a free packet of romaine lettuce seeds (they give you a free packet of seeds with each seed purchase). I’m not on my way to starting my own herb garden.

It was a really good weekend and I look forward to our next property shopping trip in the not too distant future.

 

Searching for Home

Hubby and I are in search of our homestead and recently found several acres of land.  For a matter-of-fact, we have looked at the property 3 different times now.  It is overgrown with new trees, berry bushes and grass, so is in need of clearing.  There is power along the road that could easily be run onto the property, but doesn’t have a well or septic system, so we would be spending a fair amount of money preparing the land for building our home.  Most of all, the view from the property is breath-taking.  It over looks the Ozark hills and I could easily envision our home there.  Deer and wild turkey roam the property and it is very peaceful and quiet.  It fulfills much of what we’ve been looking for in our homestead.

As we were driving home from our little family vacation a few days ago, I had time to do a lot of thinking about the property.  In so many ways it seemed perfect, yet somehow it just didn’t feel right.  I also couldn’t shake the feeling that there might be a more perfect property out there for us.  So after discussing my concerns with hubby, we agreed to keep looking.

Now we’re back from our trip and scouring various websites looking for property that could one day become our homestead.  A piece of property that gives us enough room for our goats, sheep, chickens, ducks and turkeys (yes, hubby has added turkeys to the list of animals we’ll raise on our little farm) and any other farm animals we may choose to raise.  Land that provides us with a sunny space for our garden and orchard.  We are searching for a piece of land that we can call home.

A Crazy Plan

A couple of weeks ago I wrote Planning a New Plan.  We had spent 1 1/2 years trying to come up with the perfect homestead plan, but weren’t making any measurable progress in getting there.  The time had come to re-evaluate and create a new plan and that’s what we have done.

Now, some may think this plan sounds crazy and that we’re delusional.  Maybe it is crazy and we won’t even discuss the delusional part right now.  Yet sometimes the best things in life come out of crazy delusions.

So what is this crazy plan you ask?

We have decided to buy property.  Actually, we plan to buy property when we find the perfect property to buy, but our plan is to make a purchase none-the-less.  It’s ambitious, but it’s an investment in our future.  It’s a step forward.  A chance to have property that is ours and begin working on that property – putting up fencing, planting an orchard, preparing our garden area, building a chicken coop, a shed, a barn, maybe even a house – while we wait for all the stars to align so we can move to our little homestead.

A nice benefit of the internet is the ability to shop on-line and I’ve been property shopping.  I found some property in the Missouri Ozarks that hubby and I are very interested in seeing, so we are going to look at it this weekend.

We like our new plan.  It’s probably a little bit crazy, but crazy makes sense to us, so we’re moving forward and hoping for the best.