Friday, December 24, 2010

House shopping

After the holidays we are going to look at houses.  I'm pretty excited and nervous about it too.  On one hand, I've put so much energy into the land we have and trying to get a house on it that I think I'm having some trouble letting that idea go completely.  On the other, it would be pretty exciting to have both and having both really expands our possibilities. 

There are a few complications to the idea of having two properties.  One big one being that there is no water source on the current lot so we may have to consider either hauling water, digging or having dug for us a well or setting up some really creative rain water containment system.

I have a lot of ideas roaming about in my head of things to do if we had two plots to work with.  Growing crops and trees on the one we aren't living on comes to mind....that would leave us free from having to do much over there in inclement and winter weather.  This spring, house or not we'll be adding in critters so I should have some lovely pictures once we get going. 

I expect this will be my last post for the year and maybe for a while (or at least until I order seeds) so have a happy holidays!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Take a cookie break from my drama

and visit my friend over at Stay at Home Chef for a chance to win her super secret cookie recipe.  You'll need to become a follower through networked blogs :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

So we have decided....

We've decided after much discussion with relatives and friends that we are firing our banker dude working on our home loan.  What does that mean?  It means that we are either going to wait until spring to build or we are going to find an existing home with acreage and divide projects between both lots.  There are actually 3 homes in our searches that would be a good place to start looking so probably after the new year we'll start our search for existing homes and put building on the back burner for now. 

We may come back to the idea to build and we are going to leave our deposit with the builder we've selected for now.  As it stands we wouldn't be moving in until spring or summer anyhow once the house would be built so a few months of clarity would be good for us.  We DO still plan to get chickens and goats in the spring despite the fact that we won't have a house out there.  I've seen some really nice igloo style goat housing, movable fencing and I think the addition of a milk stand and an "instant" canvas garage might get us started.  For chickens we will build a chicken tractor to keep them safe and contained.  We only live about 10 minutes away right now so we will be transporting water and spending a lot of time out there gardening so I think it will work.

The nice thing is that we own the land we planned to build on and I think with some creativity we will still make it a farm, even if we are farming from another location too.  Ideally if we find an existing home to purchase it will have land of its own.  One of the ones on our short list includes 12 in that purchase we will go from 9 acres to 21 total acres!  Holy cow(s)!  We may have to start raising grass fed beef to keep that managed.  Darn!  I "hate" having such high quality problems. :D

I'm reading Joel Salatin's book right now, You Can Farm, and its providing me with some inspiration about farming remotely since in this book he's adamant that you don't even have to own the land you farm on (too late for that one). 

I'll keep y'alls posted on what happens next.  Wish us luck!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Contemplating a change of course

We are at a point where we are considering other alternatives to our original plan.  One option is to keep with what we are trying to do, build the house on our land starting sometime hopefully soon with the banker we can't stand.  The second option is to find an existing home with land and farm it or both locations.  The third option is to stop where we are with this lender, regroup and find a new lender in the spring with a fresh face- this may or may not include keeping the current builder.  If we don't keep this builder I have a mind to revert back to one I interviewed before that we were pretty impressed with and our original smaller cape cod style plan.

The builder has really gone out of their way to try to make this work, its not their fault.   I'm not even sure if the fault lies on the bank themselves.  The banker that we are dealing with though is about to make me go off.  Its been since the end of August since we signed on.  They approved our loan back in early october.  Our appraisal has been done for nearly a month and now they are saying its a bad appraisal, that the house out front is/was a problem, etc, just goes on and on!  I think we've just about had it though. 

If any of y'alls have been here, have any advice or whatever...we'll take it!  So far our families think we should walk from this bank.  We are pretty much in agreement.

In other news (see I'm not all gloomy), I met with a survivalist group today.  Lots of great people with good ideas and skills, some of which we've not yet dabbled in yet.  Its good to have folks to ask when starting something new :)  If I get the ok from them I'll try to post a link sometime soon.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Next week maybe?

I spoke to both the bank dude and the builder today and it sounds like the problem is the appraisal.  Remember that 10k in improvements, well apparently that means to one party something different than it means to the others.  To the appraiser, its the lot improvements such as to be done well, sewer, drive, etc.  To the bank, it meant improvements we had already completed.  To us, it means more money at closing...but they can't yet say how much that will be.  Both the builder and the banker agree that the goal currently is to close by Friday the 10th and by Dec 15th at the latest.  

On a cheerier note, we are getting snow and if it actually will stick long enough to get a picture of it I'll have to put a pre-construction snow picture up under pictures soon.