Tuesday, October 31, 2017

***Close Of Escrow!!!***

It actually went pretty smoothly.

Went through the final walk-through inspection, and then went to the closing.

Signed documents for about 30 minutes as the title agent explained various things to us.

After that, we went to Home Depot and had some keys made, as the ONLY key available in Colorado was the one in the lock box. The absentee owners in Kailifornia have the only other key.

I'll be completely re-keying the place in the next day or two!

One small snag in that the "voluntary" pool and tennis court association turns out to be NOT voluntary! It's $400/year, and was another screw-up by the listing agent, who didn't verify what the absentee owners had told her.

Since we have relatives that like to swim, and my wife's friends back in Kalifornia all swim, and will be visiting, we just sighed and accepted it.

Our agent is having a professional cleaning service go by Wednesday morning to clean the place top-to-bottom for us, as a "housewarming gift". My wife is overjoyed at that, as she was planning on spending a couple of days doing that.

And I have to go through the place top-to-bottom and make an inventory of light bulbs to replace, as there are quite a few either burned-out, or way mismatched in the fixtures.

The U-Boxes are being delivered Friday, and the fence and tree guys are scheduled for next week, and the roofers a few days later, weather permitting.

And we just realized that since the wood-burning fireplace has an unknown history, we need to schedule a "chimney sweep" to come and inspect/clean/report on the status of it.

And we're both TRASHED after all the running around today.....

Sunday, October 29, 2017

T Minus Two and Counting......

Two, as in "Tuesday"....

Escrow closes, we sign all the final papers, and get the keys!

The "U-Boxes" will be delivered Saturday, and all the relatives are descending on the place Sunday to help us unpack, and move the stuff to the various places inside the house where we'll unpack it.

The fence guy will be there Monday (a week from tomorrow), and our in-laws son will bring the Bobcat by to pull ALL the old fence posts, and help reset the new ones, with the concrete properly built-up and shaped so the rain water runs away from the posts, rather than pool at the bottom, which is what caused the existing posts to rot out.

After careful evaluation of the existing fence, we decided to spend the extra money and just have that whole run replaced, and the single gate replaced with a new double-wide gate. It's going to cost about double what we had expected, but it will be ALL NEW, and coated with a "high altitude" version of a water seal product. Turns out the classic "Thompson's Water Seal" doesn't last more than a couple of years here due to the extra UV exposure compare to being at sea level. There's a competitive product made by a different company that's made for increased UV exposure, so that's what we'll be using.

Per our contractor, the new fence should be good for another 30 years, which is how old the existing fence is.

Then the tree guys are coming, and the cottonwood in the back yard will be reduce to an 8'~10' section of trunk, which "Chainsaw Mama" will turn into some yard art for us. The tree guys will also trim a large ash tree which has some limbs perilously close to the chimney, and they'll also take care of the large tree in the neighbor's lot which has a LOT of dead limbs hanging over on to our property.

Then the roof guys will come, weather permitting, and replace the roof.

And so, the adventure continues.

More to come, with plenty of pictures........

Thursday, October 26, 2017

All Systems Are GO For Move!

The written appraisal report is in, and the final loan approval came this morning.

We're getting spun up to have the fence guy and tree guys there the first weekend of November, and the roofing guy will appear soon after.

U-Haul will deliver the pods, and we have a crew of young guys ready to unload them, and drag the stuff into the house and position it where required.

The fence guy is going over the the house this afternoon so he can get some measurements and give us a written quote. He's also got some ideas to make the single gate into a double gate so we can get the tree guys truck back there.

It's a bit bigger truck than I first thought:

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Escrow Closes 31 Oct

Yay......escrow is closing a week early. Wife is busy setting up utilities, trash, etc, and I'll be looking into High-Speed Internet providers later today.

Going into to town for a brunch, and then to see the new "Blade Runner" movie.

Back later......

Monday, October 23, 2017

Best "EMP" Website I've Seen

From one of my Ham friends on the Iowa....

In particular, there's a very good section on common EMP myths vs the actual facts.

Futurescience EMP Website

Things are grinding along towards the close of escrow. Our end of it is 100% completed, and the appraisal, which was scheduled for October 25th, actually happened on the 21st.

The lender is waiting for the written report to be submitted and approved, but I don't know how soon after that the process will be completed.

And we've been furniture shopping at the various places around here. The sofa and love seat we brought with us will go down in the family room, which means we'll need new stuff for the living room, along with a dining room table and chairs, and a set of stuff for the grandkid's room.

We stooped in to an "Amish Furniture Showroom", and were amazed at the quality of the furniture.

Beautiful wood and finishes, and top shelf craftsmanship.

And prices to match!

A very nice dining room table, with two leaves and six chairs was.....wait for it...Eleven thousand dollars.

That's damn near our whole budget for the entire house.

Sure was pretty, though, and looks like it would last 100 years.....

Friday, October 20, 2017

Realxing But Busy Days, and Possible Early Close of Escrow

Just got back from our "new" house. We met our realtor there so she could open the place up, and my wife could run around making measurements of window openings for curtains, and lists of things like shower curtains, shower curtain rods, measurements of the room sizes to see if our furniture will fit (she has ZERO sense of spatial relationships, probably why she can't read a map), and I made some measurements of the downstairs rooms to see where the radio gear and cables will go, and where our carpenter friend will build the desk and workbench.

Stunningly beautiful day again, with CAVU skies and temps in the mid 70's. And it's supposed to be like this for at least the next week

This is looking across the road we're on:

I'm told the woman that owns this house on the top of the ridge trains "sniffer dogs". She also rents the ridge to a commercial radio place who has a tower with several microwave dishes and a large UHF "Bow Tie Array" on top of the tower.

Must be a nice view from up there:

Here's another view of the road leading into Bellvue, and then on to "Vern's Place", and Laporte:

This is looking back the other way. The corn in the field was still green when we first got here, then we had the snow and it turned yellow within a few days. They left if sit for another week or so to dry out, and then ran a combine through it, ground it all to silage, and hauled it away. It had pretty much been ruined for feed corn by the big hailstorm that came through here in September:

This is looking down the driveway. The stand of trees is home to several bears, and when the combine came through they all took off across the road, and up into the hills.

I'm told they WILL be back! I have my Remington 870 loaded with slugs, and my 1911 loaded with JHP. I carry the 1911 when I walk the dog late at night, and the 870 is within easy reach. I'm sure not looking for trouble when I walk Pebbles, but I want at least a (slim) fighting chance if something big, mean, and hungry comes at us. There's also mountain lions up here, but my relatives tell me that with the abundance of deer around here, the big critters generally stay well away from humans.

And finally, a view of the shop/bachelor apartment building we're staying in:

It's a bit on the Spartan end of things, but 'back in the day' this would have been a dream place for me. 10HP air compressor, MIG, TIG, Stick, and Gas welders, a plasma cutter coming soon, and it's well insulated and heated.


And no HOA or CC&R idiocy, so I could have a 75' tower, and an electronics shop in the bachelor flat side of it.

Our realtor was telling us the the absentee owners of the place we're buying will be here next weekend for a few days to do some things, and she's contacting the lender and the escrow company to see if we can move the closing up a week. Our end of things is 100% finished, and both us and the seller are just waiting on the lender and the appraiser. The appraisal is scheduled for the 25th, and she's trying to get him to move it up a few days. We offered a modest "bonus" if they could accommodate an accelerated schedule, and she said she'd look into it.

So, we might just get the keys to the place earlier than November 6th, which is when everything is set to close.

I'll really miss living up here, but the kids are still here, so I'm sure we'll be coming back many more times.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

DING! DING! DING! We Have a Winner!!

After much Strum und Drang, we decided on the "All Electric" house that the sellers dropped the price on rather than doing the roof themselves.

Which *I* think is a Good Thing, because I know we'll get a better job doing it through our 'family connections' than hiring Joe Schmo Roofing Company.

The listing agent sent us a quote for the job and it was $5700. I showed it to our in-law, and had to help him off the ground after his laughter subsided.

A more realistic quote using "30 Year High Impact" shingles, along with the proper weather proofing, underlayment, new flashing, "other" repair, etc is closer to $9200.

You gets what you pays for!

And the fence quote came in lower than expected. The "Fence Guy", who it turns out is a Master Carpenter and Finish Guy, came by yesterday afternoon and explained things to my wife. Afterwards, he, I and our in-law sat around doing the "Three Guys After Work BS Thing" talking about construction, motorcycles, family, and all manner of other Guy Stuff that the wimmens don't get, but allow the guys to do as it keeps us happy, healthy, and sane.

Turns out when the fence was put in back in 1970 something, they didn't set the posts in the concrete properly, the water puddled at the base of the post, and over half the posts have rotted out at the ground level. The individual fence panels are still about 80% "good", and will only need some new slats in spots.

So, we'll get ALL new, properly set posts, panels repairs "As Required", and a new, double-wide gate and posts, hinges and hardware for about $1200, a bunch less than all new everything.

The double wide gate is a nod to the future, as it will let the "Tree Guy" get his bucket truck back there the next time we need a couple of the big trees trimmed. It costs significantly less to get a big tree trimmed if he can get his truck to it, rather than having to climb. He said what he can do in one day with his truck, would take several days if he has to climb.

Escrow should close November 6th, as planned, and the fence and tree guys will be there the next day to knock out their work, weather permitting.

The roof will be the next major project, but we don't know the weather that far out. They won't do it in the rain or snow, or below a certain temperature . As the materials get a bit weird if you install them when it's below a certain temperature, and possibly will never seal correctly, they just won't do it below "X degrees".

And then there's the washer and dryer, a snow blower ( I am NOT shoveling snow!), window coverings, and a bunch of misc work to things like ALL the sink drains in the house, some Formica (remember that stuff?) damage on the kitchen cabinets, a completely missing lower hinge assembly on the kitchen cab under the sink, and I'm sure more little things than I know about now.

The tower and antenna can wait until spring. I can always operate with my Elecraft K2 and either my BuddiPole/BuddiStick, or my "big" vertical/SGC-230 combination and one of my other rigs.

Satellite operations from DN70kn are also a definite possibility in the next couple of months. And I could also do DN70jp here in Bellvue if I got motivated enough.

So, the last i's have been crossed and t's dotted in the offer/acceptance chain.

Next stop......close of escrow!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Seller Drops Price Another $10k

Been busy here the last couple of days helping around the little place we're staying at, and waiting to hear from the seller of the house we have the offer on.

They had until midnight Tuesday to respond, but our agent called us to inform us of their response on Saturday afternoon ( ! ).

They responded by dropping the agreed upon price from $385k to $375k and selling the house "AS-IS".

The $10k price cut will pay for a first-class roofing job with all the little upgrades our in-law recommends, with a little left over, but leaves the tree removal ($2500~$3k) and fence repair ($1500~$2k) up to us.

Oh, and add another $2k for washer and clothes dryer. I'll be buying rebuilt/reconditioned Speed Queen units from a place in Fort Collins that specializes in them. They look new when they're rebuilt, and have some crazy 10-year, anything goes warranty on them. I forget which reader suggested that route, but thank you very much! The little electronics place I worked at in high school built many little boxes and modules for Speed Queen, and just hearing the name brought back many memories.

And we'll need more furnishings, window coverings, and other "woman/wife/girly" stuff to finish it out.

The bad thing about this is that we can't start any of the work until escrow closes and the property is in our name. Both agents and our contractor in-law advised against it, even if we received the current owner's written permission.

And we still haven't decided yet to accept their offer or walk, and start negotiating on the other house we really like.

Both places look like you could squeeze another garage on the property and still meet all the codes, setbacks, and easements, but it would be a "1.5 car" sized garage, and I'm not sure if it's worth it. Both houses have fully-finished, INSULATED garages, but no heater in them. One house can take a 40' tower, and the other a "50 foot" tower with careful placement.

So I doubt if I'll ever get my own garage/shop, one of my reasons for moving here, but I will be able to get a tower and decent antenna, along with a new radio......or two.

SSSSSHHH!! She doesn't know the "or two" part!

I'm still undecided on which house. This has been the first time I've ever put this much thought into buying a house. My first wife and I had two criteria: 1)Where is it?, and 2) How much is it? We wound up with a nice sized house and lot in an "OK" part of town for a great price, but getting that place in order took all the "Sweat Equity" out of me.

I do very high quality work, but I'm SLOOOOOW at doing it. That house took me about two years to get finished, with my first wife constantly on my case about it.

NEVER again......!

So we have "House 1", which I posted some pix of, and "House 2", which I haven't. They're both very nice places, #1 being on the West Central side of town, and the other being out further East, on the 'far side' of I-25.

#1 has 5 bedrooms, 3 full baths, and half-bath just off the laundry room. It's a split-level, built in 1977, and packs 3386sqft of house on a 10,500sqft lot. And it has a beautiful sunroom on the NW side of the house. It's "NW" instead of West because of the way the house sits on the lot. It has a fully-finished basement with a LOT of storage space hidden behind doors. It's "ALL Electric", and will cost us about $100/month more to heat and cool it than #2. It has NO A/C installed, but our in-law tells us it's pretty easy to install "mini-splits" which are basically multiple, small heating/cooling units run from a central compressor/condenser unit.

#2 has 4 bedrooms, 1 full bath, one 3/4 bath, and one 1/2 bath. It's also a split-level, built in 1976, and has 2645sqft on a 14,170 sqft lot. No sunroom, but a refinished deck, a sandbox area for the kids, healthy trees, and a tree swing. It needs basically NOTHING done to it, and the couple that bought it put $35k into carpet, paint, new kitchen skylight, NEW ROOF, and a bunch of other things when they bought it three years ago. We could probably get that house for $385k, as the sellers are anxious to sell it. It also has forced-air gas heating, and central A/C.

I really like both houses. I suspect we'll go with the "#1 House" due to the finished basement, and it being much more "In Town" than the other one.

Friday, October 13, 2017

It 'Aint Dead Yet.....

Now that the wife's core has cooled from her melt-down over the Home Inspection report, we're proceeding.

Our contractor in-law told her 99% of the same thing that I told her over the results of the inspection report, and she calmed down.

Our realtor has three quotes for a complete re-roof (~$9k to $10k), and she should get the estimate on the tree removal today.

We have until 2359 today to proceed or walk away, and we'll have all the estimates from both our realtors contractors, and our in-laws subcontractors in a couple of hours from now, 1145.

Th sellers have until 2359 on Tuesday to respond with a "yea" or "nay" to our demands, or offer some form of compromise, usually a price reduction.

So the ball is still in play, and this is probably the last "time-out" of the process.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Scratch One House Offer......

Inspection report came in, and other than the roof and tree, it has a bunch of little piddly shit that's freaking my wife out.

Things like typical "Home Owner Grade" repairs to the plumbing (flex-type drain hoses in the bathroom sinks, etc), and other "advisories" in the report that are intended to cajole the new owner to bring the property up to the 2017 building code when it was built to code in 1977.

I told her to call the realtor in the morning and kill the deal.

I'm absolutely NOT going to put up with her bitching, moaning, fretting and whining about $2k worth of minor repairs.

Aint worth it AT ALL.

Good night, all....gotta take the dog for her 2230 walk.

Home Inspection

We don't have the final report yet, but as expected, the roof has hail damage, and evidence of poor repairs.

I thought that so many items checked as "Do Not Know" on the seller's disclosure looked pretty shady, but let it slide until the home inspection happened.

The seller claiming they didn't know the age of the roof was especially galling, as it would have been on the disclosure statement THEY received. And seeing as we were told they are realtors, they really should have known better. One of the insurance agents we talked to about homeowner's insurance pulled the permit history of the house, and told us it was last (legally) re-roofed in 2001. For the seller to say they "didn't know" is 100% pure BS.

So, at this point, we need one run of fence replaced (we knew that already), and the cottonwood tree cut waaaay back (we also knew that), and now we have confirmation that the roof needs replacing.

Since there was a major hailstorm here in September, and there are a dozen or more houses in the neighborhood getting new roofs, it's pretty obvious that a damage claim could be filed by the current owners to cover at least some of the cost.

Anywhoo.....our contractor in-law just called his roofing guy, tree guy, and fence guy, and they'll go look at the house either this afternoon or tomorrow, and get back to us with estimates. And he said he'd be pretty surprised if the two agents let this deal fall apart over these items.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Dotted a Few More i's Today.....

Delivered some required loan docs today, and drove by "our" house this morning. We also drove around the neighborhood for a while today.

There seems to be a significant number of houses in a 1/2 mile radius (several blocks every direction) either undergoing serious renovation, or for sale.

At least one or two every other block we drove by had a low-key for sale sign on the yard, or had a roofing crew doing a complete re-roof, or a dumpster out front and a company truck from either a kitchen/bathroom remodel place, or a general contractor parked at the curb.

Now this might be typical for Fort Collins, but I didn't see this much activity in any of the neighborhoods where the 20 or so other houses we looked at or drove by were located. It's fairly specific to this particular area.

My contractor in-law tells me that for the last year or so, certain areas are getting quietly bought up by "Big Money Real Estate Companies", but he didn't go much further than that, only indicate that the area was "ANYTHING North of Prospect Rd", which is the next major street to the North of us.

Maybe it's spilled South a little, or maybe the not-so-big real estate companies are coming down our way.

Geez.....I can't believe how fast I've assimilated into this area! I mean, I feel "At Home" here, something I never really felt when I merely "lived" in SoCal. It's almost like I was on a long-term Field Service assignment for a large part of my life "back there", and now that job is finished, and it really was time to move on.

I think it's fitting that I consider my "last job" in SoCal to be on the Iowa, as it was really the only place other than on the Sea Launch Commander where I ever really felt "At Home". Kinda like I was going back to the "Home Office" to clean up a bunch of loose ends, train up a few good guys, and square things away before going on to a new "assignment". It's just something about having a deck under your feet; you're "Home".

This place reminds of "home" back in Illinois, but with mountains!

Anyway......the Official Home Inspection is Wednesday, and we'll most likely find out that it needs a new roof. When we were shopping companies for homeowner's insurance, one of the agents took the address, crossed it to the city building site, and pulled a permit history for the house in about 45 seconds! Turns out the house was last roofed in 2001, and as a result of that hailstorm a while back that trashed the kid's place, along with how many others in 16 years, the roof is most likely "End-Of-Life".

Which means we'll most likely have a new roof this winter. Either the current owners can submit a claim for hail damage based on the inspection reports, or they can buy us a new roof, or make a cost reduction. The outcome has direct impact on our homeowner's insurance in that if we have a new roof, out cost is about half what it would be if we went with a repair or used the roof "AS-IS".

Wednesday should be pretty "interesting"!

Monday, October 9, 2017

"Survived" First Storm!

Mostly because it wasn't much of a storm.

We got roughly 3"~4" here in Bellvue, and it's melting. The dog absolutely LOVED it, running around and trying to catch the snowflakes.

Can't find my camera, or I would have taken some pix. And my cellphone will not cooperate with this laptop, so I can't get the pix off of it and on to here.

Big sheets of snow are sliding off the roof of the shop/apartment, and going "PLOP!" on the ground, causing the dog to run to the side door/window and look at them.

Tuesday we sign the final loan documents, and Wednesday is the official home inspection, which I'm going to tag along on....

Sunday, October 8, 2017

First Winter Storm Coming....

I'll take some pix here today, and then some tomorrow for the "before and after".

NWS says anywhere from 4" to 10" depending on what the storm track winds up being.

In the mean time, I'm helping our extended family members get the garage/shop area cleaned out so they can store a couple of boats in it, and also clearing room for the Supra whenever that gets here......

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Counteroffer Accepted, And The Clock Is Running!

Now we're sceduling the appraisal and inspection, and looking into high-speed Internet providers.

Should be in the house the 1st or 2nd week of November.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Holy Smokes.......I Think We Just Bought A House!

WoW........The realtor just called, and the sellers countered with $385k!

I had expected them to come back at $395k, but I guess they really do want to get rid of this property and avoid the financial drain of holding on to it until spring.

Now my wife is (finally) beginning to fret over the electric baseboard heat, where she's going to put the furniture (can't block or cover the baseboard units), where the big TV and entertainment center is going to be ("we simply can't put the couch there!"), blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.....

I mentioned these things the second or third time we looked at the house, and I might as well have been talking to a tree......blank stares from her. Nothing registered......

I suggested tonight that we go look at the house again so she could get all these "woman" things out of the way and she was "Oh, NO!!! That will look so dorky to ask to see the house again before we accept their counter offer!!!!".


We have until 1700 on Thursday the 5th to accept or walk away.

I talked to the in-laws "Tree Guy" today and he told me that depending on if he could get his bucket lift to the tree, or if it would be a "climbing job", the cost to get rid of all the dead limbs could be anywhere from $1k to $2.5k, including clean up. He said you can burn Laceleaf Cotton wood in your fireplace once it's dried, but that it has "an odor", and is better suited to burning in a heater or stove in your shop or garage. Most people burn pine here because it's cheap, and when I asked him about pine's reputation for clogging up your fireplace flue, he said you "just burn a hot fire", and it isn't much of a problem.

A cord of hardwood goes for about $350 here, so I'm thinking the fireplace will not be used as a source of heat.

Written Offer Submitted

Just finished going over the official offer to buy, making sure the i's were crossed, and the t's were dotted.

The sellers have until 1700 tomorrow (Thursday) to accept, reject, or counter.

I'm expecting they'll counter, as we offered about $20k less than the listing price.

The interesting thing is that the owners are real estate agents and lived here in Fort Collins for many years. They should have (and probably did) know that the city would never allow them to turn a house in a residentially-zoned, "single family house" area into a mini-apartment building.

The price we offered is what they paid for the house when they bought it back in March, which is why they'll probably counter-offer.

As our DIL's Dad says, "Don't pay for THEIR mistake." He thinks we made them a very fair offer, and he knows the market here very well.

But, it's been on the market for over 60 days, and we're they only offer they've had. I really doubt they'll want to sit on it until Spring because they'll have the mortgage, utilities, taxes, and other things to keep paying for.

Just have to wait and see what their response is......

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Made An Offer On A House.....

The owners are absentee landlords (East SF Bay area) who bought the house this March for $380k, repainted it inside and out, installed new carpet and appliances, fixed a bunch of things, and advertised it as a rental unit for CSU students.

Until the city stepped in and told them that use was forbidden in a residential area.

Frustrated in their attempt to be landlords, they put the property on the market at $420k and waited.

They dropped the price to $419,900 to get it under $420k so it would show up in more searches on real estate websites, and waited.

After a while, they dropped the price to $399,900 and waited.

They had two open houses, lots of lookie-loos, and no offers.

The only thing that bothered me about the house is that it's "All Electric", with electric heat, electric stove, and most likely an electric water heater.

I'm not even sure if it has a gas line running in to it, but I'll look for a meter next time I go by.

Anyway....it's been on the market for 61 days, and NO offers, but a fair amount of interest.

So, after getting all the billing info on gas and electric usage, and talking to both the City of Fort Collins and the Larimer County building and zoning people confirming that YES, I can put up the 40' tower and antenna, we decided to go with the "All Electric" house. It will cost several hundred dollars per year more to heat it than the other house we were looking at, but this one is closer to town, has a bigger garage with an extended back wall to fit a work bench, and is a bigger house with a really cool layout.

Front of house:

Back of house:

And one of the downstairs rooms (it has a fully finished basement with another full bath!) that will most like become my "Colorado Radio Ranch" room:

The house has five bedrooms, 3 full baths and a half-bath, is 3389sqft, and is on a 10,477sqft lot in a very nice section of Fort Collins.

My wife flipped out when she saw the front door was painted red, one of her favorite things, and I like the neighborhood because it has street names like "Constitution Ave", "Valley Forge Dr", "Yorktown Ave", "Essex Dr", and "Independence Rd".

Good omens for both of us.

I would expect them to counter our offer, but our agent, their agent, and our contractor in-law have all said that if we aren't the ones to buy it, it will probably sit until Spring, as the real estate market is winding down for the season here.

There was snow here yesterday above 7,000', and frost everywhere this morning.

Winter is coming!

Better Fuel Economy at 5300' elevation??

Just a side note to all that's going on here.

My fuel economy has improved by approximately 1.8MPG.

The only thing I can think of is the quality and type of gasoline going into the tank.

Most of the pumps here, and all of the pumps we refueled at during the trip, have the disclaimer "May Contain Up To 10% Ethanol" on them, so it's not like I'm getting 100% gasoline all of a sudden.

I've read in reputable publications for 20 years or more that gasoline in Kalifornia is very strictly regulated, and blended quite differently than that sold in other states.

Either Kalifornia uses some zombie-blend that kills fuel economy, or the 1100 mile trip pulling a dual-axle trailer really loosened up my engine!

Monday, October 2, 2017

And Then There Were Two......

In addition to the 12 houses we've already looked at, we've looked at another four in the past few days.

Some were quite nice, but in areas that I doubt would allow a 40' tower with a "proper" Yagi antenna on it, and others "needed some work", to be charitable.

If I were 20 or 30 years younger, they'd be good buys, but as somebody here commented (WSF, I think), I don't need a place where sweat equity is involved.

Sunday afternoon we, The Kids, and our realtor went and looked at the three contenders on the list.

One of them we scratched because the layout was a bit "obtuse", which left us with two.

This morning we did some "Drive By Viewings" of another four, and scratched those.

Back to the two prime contenders.

We sat down and scratched our heads for a couple of hours, writing down all the pros and cons of the two finalists.

We called the realtor to tell her we were going to make an offer on one of them, and then I mentioned to my wife that that particular house had 100% electric "baseboard heat", and there wasn't any ductwork that I could see in the house, making central air conditioning a very expensive retrofit.

I'm also not sure that we really need central A/C, as even the kids say it's not too bad on hot days....kind of a "dry heat" thing, which I'm not sure if I believe. Still, it would definitely be nice to have it rather than relying on portable or window units.

The heating system works very well (it was the only house besides the "#2 house" that even had the heat turned on), and since EVERY room had it's own thermostat, you essentially had "zoned heating", where you could shut the heat down almost completely in any unused room or space.

Since it's located *in* the city, and I've been told the electric company gets the power restored ASAP if it goes down, we probably wouldn't have to worry about freezing to death during an extended power outage. It also has a fireplace, so I suppose we could all huddle around the hearth and roast weenies if it came to that.

For Phil......

 My buddy Phil from Bustednuckles brought up a good point on my previous post. Since I have things on the engine torn down this far: It wou...