Thanks so much for all your input on the old house . . all the houses for that matter. We realize there are advantages, as well as disadvantages, to living in the city or the country. For everyone, it’s a personal decision. For us, what matters most, is knowing what we want and not being swayed by something that seems so great as did the 1883 house. When I talk about living in the country, mostly I’m wanting to be out of the city limits, far enough away that the chance of annexation is slim to none, but not so far away that it takes forever to get to town.
When we first knew we were moving, we made a list of “want” and “do not want” items. The top of the do not want list was to live outside the city limits. I think one of the most important things in life is to know what you want and work towards that goal. When we don’t have goals, we’re easily swayed one direction or the other. We know what we want and not living in the city is important to us.
There is one house that seems like it would be close to perfect for us but it’s way out in the country . . 8 miles down a dirt road. We won’t consider that one.
We understand that living out in the country means there are no restrictions and anything could end up next to us. That’s why we want enough land that we don’t have to worry about seeing or hearing neighbors, to some degree anyway. We lived pretty far out in the country in Kentucky. We dealt with mice when the farmers cut the fields around us. Our closest neighbor was about 11 acres away but we heard their roosters (and I loved it!). Our roads were not great but since I don’t travel much, it wasn’t something that bothered me at all. Vince is taking my Honda back to Texas and he asked me to check to see when the tires were rotated last and get that done if needed. They were rotated about 14 months ago and since then, I’ve put almost 4,000 miles on the car! So, you can see I don’t get out much!
In our opinion, living in the city simply adds another layer of bureaucracy, along with added taxes. Someone telling us what we can and cannot do with our own land . . not what we want.
Some of the issues that have been mentioned about living in the country.
Roads – Have you seen Texas roads? Their back roads are better than many interstate highways. Yesterday Vince and I were out driving around here in MO and we were in the city and Vince said “I’m so glad we’re moving to Texas where they have such great roads!”
Internet – We always ask if they have high speed internet and so far, everything we’ve looked at has had DSL. If not, we can always go with satellite. I’m not going to let internet be the determining factor if we find a great house/land. Just so we can get something that works halfway decent, I’ll be happy and maybe if I don’t have such great internet, I’ll get more done! 🙂
Phone service – Not sure anywhere in that area doesn’t have reliable phone service but we will use our cell phones and probably not have a home phone unless Magic Jack is available there and right now, I don’t think it is. We’ve checked everywhere we looked to be sure there’s cell phone service. In fact, as we were driving down there, I was amazed that way out in the middle of nowhere, they had 3G. There were just a couple of places that didn’t have 3G. We didn’t have 3G here at home (in MO) and I kept complaining that it was everywhere in TX but we didn’t have it right here in town. When we got home, I happened to look at my phone and we have 3G now! Got it while we were gone.
Water/Sewer – We prefer to have city/rural water for drinking but a well for watering. Many of the country homes do have wells or ponds (tanks as they’re called in that area). We can pump water from the pond for watering a garden or fruit trees. One house we looked last week is in the city and their water bill was $500 last month. It’s so dry there that keeping grass growing is very expensive. Most people in the city have water bills in the $300 – $500 range. They informed us that includes sewer and trash pickup. Still seems awfully expensive to me. This is one of the first houses we’ve had with city sewer and we’ve never had a problem. Texas is real picky about septic tanks and most houses there have two.
While many prefer living in the city, we aren’t in that category. We do know the ramifications of living outside town and we’ll be real happy to deal with whatever comes our way . . just get me out of the city! 🙂