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Thread: My house value is shot.
07-04-07, 11:09 AM #1
My house value is shot.
When I was looking for houses 12 years ago, I chose the one I did because of the back yard. I know it sounds silly, I mean, the house was nice enough, if small, but the neighborhood didn't thrill me. What did it was the back yard. Huge oak tree, several other nice sized trees, and behind the back fence was the back lot of a lumber company, and it was full of lots of old growth trees. It made for a nice, private back yard, nicely shaded, my own little haven.
Now, those old growth trees are gone. The lumber company is tearing everything up and burning it for insurance purposes. The ones that had grown through my fence are now only evidenced by the holes in my chain link. I've got a great view of the drug-ridden apartment complex the next street over, and all hint of privacy is gone. I can't even look into my back yard now without feeling exposed. The owner of the yard had talked about replacing our fence, but I'll believe it when I see it. I'm seriously thinking about getting some 10 or 12 foot fence panels so I've got some privacy again. I'm just heartbroken right now. I want to move.
07-04-07, 11:12 AM #2GrasshopperVerified LEO
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07-04-07, 11:41 AM #3
Yes Hedges are probably better than a fence, plus it will look more natural."An Unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." Jeff Cooper
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07-04-07, 12:46 PM #4
Before you fix your yard: depending on where you are, your land value may be higher than you think; it may go up a bit, or it may go down a lot. Ask questions: find out why the land behind you is being cleared. "Insurance purposes" smells like a lie. Vegetation is usually left for residential uses. Commercial or multi-unit use land is usually totally cleared and burned off.
Land developers usually lie, if they talk thru a lawyer, then lying is nearly certain. Get answers from more than the current owners. Know the zoning, check for changes and permits. Get a current valuation before you make any big moves. If more public funded multi unit housing is coming, it may be time to move. Hiint: HUD, housing authority, or govt. BS slogans on land use change signs means bad news, I sold one rental house as soon as the open space next to it sold and multi unit rezoning (change of use) was requested. Took the first pre-qualified cash buyer at my price. Beware of low-ball speculators, or those wanting you to carry a note. Closed the sale just before a HUD project was issued permits. Hint - I got a lawyer when I called the published number on the change of land use posting. Lawyer wouldn't give me info on the ownership beyond public records available. This was in a small rural city.
The same low end housing is moving into rural areas. The driving force may be the lower cost to the govt aka welfare industry, to house welfare with no other other support. Developers build a low quality place and run off. Sold to a private contractor who does nothing but collect rent and govt subsidies while the property still has value. Once run down to low value, a slumlord buys it ......
If you stay: a felony farm (crummy old apt complex, or new one) nearby, get a solid wall fence; wood, brick, or whatever. Local code may limiit height, so ask for a variance. Noise, traffic, shade, or slope of land may be some reasons. After you get the OK, put something sharp and/or electric along the top, get sensor(s) and motion detector activated floodlights. Don't ask or tell, just do it. You may have to do all sides of your backyard depending on the neighbor's, and block any doper pathways already in place. A flower or veggie garden along the foot of the wall/fence with sticks, wire, trellises, grape or raspberries vines, will look good and trip-up anyone coming in.
Ducks were mentioned. Geese and peacocks are good alarm critters too, but big birds shit everywhere. Peacocks are esp. noisy. A well trained dog is all around better.
Trees - get some trees that are already started. In some areas you can look for Arbor Day free trees. Consider the output of fallen leaves and tree pollen when you consider species. Shade - build a gazebo.
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07-04-07, 01:15 PM #5
The lumber company has been there for something like 60 years, and where they're clearing is in a corner that is really inaccessible for new development unless they put in a pretty long driveway from the next block over. I talked to the owner himself about the situation, he was the one that told me it was for insurance purposes. It's an active company, so yeah, the sounds of the sawblades may be enough to get me a variance. There's already a small apartment complex at the back end of where they're clearing, and when I told one of the guys on the local SO where they were clearing, his first remark was "Now you get to sit out back and watch the drug deals go down." I think he's looking into using my back yard as an observation station now. I don't mind, hell, I'll provide snacks and sodas.
I know people from the apartments had been going into the woods and drinking and stuff, that may be the 'insurance liability' that they're protecting against. It just bothers the shit out of me that now I don't have any privacy at all, specifically from those same people. What I'm hoping is that they'll agree to put up (or at least supply the panels for) a nice, tall wooden fence to compensate me for the loss of my own fencing.
The area in general isn't conducive to slum type areas, the entire neighborhood is doing a turn around and the houses are selling for 2 to 3 times the price I paid for this one, albeit with some renovations. I have been hoping for a while that the apartment complex would catch fire, that would solve a lot of problems right there. But even it has improved in the 12 years I've been here.
The vegetation was a thick tangle of trees and wisteria vines, it did need some cleaning up in that it wasn't anything like a park like setting, and who knows, they may have that planned now. The owner was talking about having it all grassed in and he'd keep it mowed. The trees probably would have made most city types uncomfortable, so it's possible that the land value could go up. If the apartments clean up their act, then values definitely WOULD go up. I'm just a country girl who lives in the suburbs right now, I value my privacy. I hope that values will go up enough (eventually) where I can see this place and buy a house in the middle of the woods.
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