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When To Throw in the Towel

 
pollinator
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When do you throw in the towel on selling a homestead?

We have had our homestead for sale for about 3 months now, and we have had some interest in it. In total we have had about 25 couples/people tour the home, with (4) offers to buy it. Those offers fell through for various reasons. One was just too low of an offer, another couple failed to get financing, with another young couple we agreed to a price, but they decided to continue renting and not buy any house at all, and the latest wants to buy the house, but in the spring.

We have so many options so we are not sure what to do.

The couple that wanted to buy the house, but financing fell through, wants to rent the home until their house out of state sells, then buy it. That is why financing fell through, they cannot hold two mortgages at the same time...fully understandable.

The problem with the people that want to buy the house, but wait until Spring is, it will mean paying another years taxes, and heating the home all winter. If we agree to a price, we not only have to pay for taxes and heat, we could miss out on the high buying levels of homes in springtime.

Part of me just says, if we are going to pay for taxes and heat, Katie and I should just say to heck with selling, and move our family back into that bigger house. The house we are now living in, is not much, but it could be rented out. It comes with 30 acres, enough for a homesteader to do something with.

Or, if a homesteader wanted too, they could rent the house that is up for sale. With a house, a barn, sheep and hay; they could literally move in tomorrow and start homesteading.

Or Katie and I could just say to heck with any selling and renting, keep everything, and just work real jobs to pay for everything.





 
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My first choice would be to rent it to the couple that wants to buy it until their house sells.  If that doesn't work out, I think I would rent it on a month to month basis with the condition that the renter knows I will be showing it occasionally.
 
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3 months? that's a very short time to sell in. What is the average length of time to sell a similar property in your area, where I am it's 3 YEARS and of course many properties are on the market longer than that. But your choice is one only you can make, only you know how much you can afford to hold onto.
 
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Could you hold the note?

That could be a win win as buyers get in, and you get interest and principle payments. And worse case (ofbthe default), you get the deposit and the homestead back...
 
Travis Johnson
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Skandi Rogers wrote:3 months? that's a very short time to sell in. What is the average length of time to sell a similar property in your area, where I am it's 3 YEARS and of course many properties are on the market longer than that. But your choice is one only you can make, only you know how much you can afford to hold onto.




It changes with the economy, but right now the average sell time is 47 days, so that is why 90 days has me concerned.
 
Travis Johnson
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J Davis wrote:Could you hold the note?

That could be a win win as buyers get in, and you get interest and principle payments. And worse case (ofbthe default), you get the deposit and the homestead back...



I could. We own the house outright so we can be pretty flexible.

I have never really considered rent to own because I do not know much about it. I know my wife's Grandparents had that years ago as buyers, and everything was great until the person they bought the house off from, died. The kids in charge of the estate then demanded the money from the house, and by the skin of their teeth, they managed to get a mortgage, and keep what they had. But it was very worrisome for them at the time.

And I knew of a couple who did that as well, and they were happy until an eviction notice was put on their door. They had been paying the homeowner, but she just took the money and never paid her bank, so they came knocking. They were good about it, but the couple still lost all their money, and the home they thought they were buying.

But it is not much better for the seller either, because if the renter squats on the house for four years, decides it is so run down now that they do not want to buy it, it ends up leaving the seller with a house they have to dump money into to try and get it sold to someone else.

So it is just a lot of risk all the way around.
 
Travis Johnson
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Trace Oswald wrote: My first choice would be to rent it to the couple that wants to buy it until their house sells.  If that doesn't work out, I think I would rent it on a month to month basis with the condition that the renter knows I will be showing it occasionally.



That is kind of what I am thinking, but I am not sure if Katie is on board with that.

To me, before allowing that, we could see what house sales are going for in that area, how long it typically takes to sell the home down there, and then get kind of sense how long a home sale might take. It is not concrete I know, but it does limit the risk somewhat.
 
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Travis Johnson wrote:
The problem with the people that want to buy the house, but wait until Spring is, it will mean paying another years taxes...


Wouldn't the annual taxes be pro-rated so that you only pay for the time you actually own the house?  

When you say that they want to wait until spring, do you mean that they are willing to go under contract now and delay the close until spring or wait until spring to do the whole transaction?  

The former is worth considering, especially if the contract allows for termination in the case of various eventualities.  Spring is a long way away.  The purchase price can also be adjusted upwards so part of all of your holding costs for the house are included in the price.  

Alternatively, you can do a contract that gives them a ROFO (right of first offer) if you get a solid offer on the house from someone else, but there would have to be some mechanism that makes that arrangement equally favorable to you.

It makes sense to keep them on the line if they seem sincere and you like them as buyers, but with no contract in place then the arrangement is entirely in their favor.  You should receive benefit as well.  If they are unwilling to make a formal arrangement that requires them to have some skin in the game, of course you can keep them in the mix as potential buyers, but I'd recommend making it clear that you will not hold the property for them.  

I would hesitate before renting it out.  I'm not sure how it is by you, but around here, a house being a rental can push its value down, and of course renters can be hard on the property.  Another factor is that the tenants may simply refuse to move out. That can open quite a can of worms.

The fact that you got 4 offers in 3 months should give you confidence that the house is desirable and that more offers are likely to come your way.
 
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The other option to consider is a lease with an option to purchase, and set the option price at a level that they will not want to walk away from.

For example, if the house is priced at 100k, you could set the option price at 20k, and set the option date at 2 years. They “buy” the option upfront by handing you 20k on move-in, pay rent, say 1k per month, and at the end of the option period (or anytime before that) they either exercise their option and buy the house for 100k less the 20k they already paid you, or walk away and you keep the 20k (and of course the rent). If they fail to pay the rent, or otherwise breach the lease, and you evict, they also forfeit the 20k.

All of the numbers and time periods are negotiable, of course, but the idea is, if they really want the place, and have skin in the game, they are more likely to complete the transaction and not walk away vice renting until “whenever” and then leaving when convenient.

You do have to be willing to be “mean” and hold them to their commitment if they don’t come through at the end of the option period, but I suppose that is no different from holding the mortgage note and foreclosing if they fail to pay as agreed.

Definitely requires the help of a lawyer to draw up the lease option contract under Maine law, but something to consider.
 
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Travis Johnson wrote:

J Davis wrote:Could you hold the note?

That could be a win win as buyers get in, and you get interest and principle payments. And worse case (ofbthe default), you get the deposit and the homestead back...



I could. We own the house outright so we can be pretty flexible.

I have never really considered rent to own because I do not know much about it. I know my wife's Grandparents had that years ago as buyers, and everything was great until the person they bought the house off from, died. The kids in charge of the estate then demanded the money from the house, and by the skin of their teeth, they managed to get a mortgage, and keep what they had. But it was very worrisome for them at the time.

And I knew of a couple who did that as well, and they were happy until an eviction notice was put on their door. They had been paying the homeowner, but she just took the money and never paid her bank, so they came knocking. They were good about it, but the couple still lost all their money, and the home they thought they were buying.

But it is not much better for the seller either, because if the renter squats on the house for four years, decides it is so run down now that they do not want to buy it, it ends up leaving the seller with a house they have to dump money into to try and get it sold to someone else.

So it is just a lot of risk all the way around.



well a good lease with option (aka - lease to own) should be little risk, for you...bigger risk factor for your renters/buyers.
if you plan to deal fairly, less risk for them...

but the big thing is if they dont pay the rent and fulfill the terms of lease ...then they forfeit their initial money, and you are no longer obligated to sell to them.
however i have known many people to have these arrangements that went well for both parties.

if you own the house outright i would consider that a good idea.

usually the way this works is they pay a down payment (can be 1% ---> 10% of purchase price depending on agreement), AND 2 months up front (the general first and last) and then monthly payments.

the usual way it goes is someone pays 200-400 MORE per month than the "rent" amount...and you agree this will all add up eventually...to go towards their eventual down payment.

so someone may pay 1% purchase price, for instance...AND first and last...with say 300 a month going towards their eventual down payment.  maybe your lease option term is 2 years...that means they buy the exclusive right to buy for 2 years. you would then get the down payment amount and 2 months upfront...and if they succeed in buying before the two years is up...and provided that they have paid rent timely and holding up their end...then the 1% upfront and the 300 per month is deducted from purchase price.

and its all written up in a lease...with or without the "exclusive right to buy" included...or you can do both a straight lease and have all other lease option terms in separate agreement.

doesnt need to be a complex doc, just lay out all terms...and with the right people this can be a HUGE help to your buyer...to save up down payment, and fix credit issues, etc...before they buy 2 years later.

 
leila hamaya
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some other things to mention - you can have any terms you want in the agreement, obviously- reasonable / lawful ones...but really any specifics.

just like a lease. like pick up garbage, no painting, and they PAY UTILS AND HEAT or whatever else concerns you...and the upfront money should be more than enough for the tax payments.
if they do not fulfill your conditions that could void the agreement, so theres some pressure on them to fulfill their end of whatever specifics are important to you, and get it all in writing.

it is not that complicated to draw up these, if you wanted get legal advise...but i wouldnt...it does not need to be that complicated an agreement.
you can even find templates online...for state specific leases and lease options...that you could change up or reword for your needs. actually i have a template in my files...but these things should be state specific...

because with these...it is very flexible what the terms are. you could ask 3% of purchase price down...to get more upfront...or more...many lease options are 5% some even 10% down. but generally...it's a lower down payment...and this, along with an EXTRA 200-400 per month.... will all add up to future "down payment"...when and if they come through with their financing and buy later.

regardless you keep the "options" money...which is you selling the exclusive right to buy. to fulfill your end, you only have to not market the home, because you sold the exclusive right to buy for the time period...maybe 2 years to make sure thats enough time.
 
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Skandi Rogers wrote:3 months? that's a very short time to sell in. What is the average length of time to sell a similar property in your area, where I am it's 3 YEARS and of course many properties are on the market longer than that. But your choice is one only you can make, only you know how much you can afford to hold onto.



I agree, even 90 days for a rural property seems pretty short.  My parents had their rural property on the market for two years.  My mother and we kids lived in it and we saw our dad at weekends, when he made the five hour drive back from his new job.  If my husband tried to do that to me, I might consider divorce!  Though my parents really had no other option--my dad's work is highly specialized and when his contract ran out, there was no other employer closer.  

But anyway.  I think it's not time to throw in the towel just yet--maybe after two years :)
 
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Travis Johnson wrote:
The couple that wanted to buy the house, but financing fell through, wants to rent the home until their house out of state sells, then buy it. That is why financing fell through, they cannot hold two mortgages at the same time...fully understandable.

The problem with the people that want to buy the house, but wait until Spring is, it will mean paying another years taxes, and heating the home all winter. If we agree to a price, we not only have to pay for taxes and heat, we could miss out on the high buying levels of homes in springtime.

Part of me just says, if we are going to pay for taxes and heat, Katie and I should just say to heck with selling, and move our family back into that bigger house. The house we are now living in, is not much, but it could be rented out. It comes with 30 acres, enough for a homesteader to do something with.

Or, if a homesteader wanted too, they could rent the house that is up for sale. With a house, a barn, sheep and hay; they could literally move in tomorrow and start homesteading.

Or Katie and I could just say to heck with any selling and renting, keep everything, and just work real jobs to pay for everything.



Regarding the renter:
Your expenses (property tax, insurance, etc...) ought to be covered by your rental price, no?
The heating/utility expenses ought to be the renter's responsibility (unless you have a situation where it's combined with other use/home and difficult to assign usage?, and still, the rental price ought to reflect the value the renter is gaining by having the heat included).
Maybe I'm misunderstanding, and they are "renting" your empty home to stake a claim, while continuing to live at their "for sale home", but really all the same applies...

Regarding the "wait until Spring buyer":
If they are serious, maybe they'd make a deposit towards the sale, which would not be refunded if they backed out? That way you are compensated for your lost opportunity for renting, or accepting another offer.

 
Travis Johnson
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We have really been screwed over on this house…

What happened was, some friends called and said, “they had an idea that they wanted to run by us.” Well, if that ever happens to you, RUN…run like the wind!

They had some adult children that needed a house, so they thought if we fixed up our other home across the street, moved into that, their kids could live in our bigger house, and by splitting the rent between them, actually save rent per month on their crappy trailers they were renting. That seemed logical, as we would make some extra money, so we fixed up the other house, and moved in…all within 5 weeks.

But these people are kind of white trash, so we had a pretty specific rental agreement stating junk cars and the like would not be in the yard, and all that. We go it online, but the rental agreement was pretty specific on how the place was to be kept.

They signed it, but then a week later we heard NOTHING. I knew that was a bad sign, ad it was. They thought we were going to pay for utilities and heat, and since we did not do that, they could not afford to live in the house. I think the specific rental agreement bothered them as well.

So, it sat vacant all winter. We had just moved, so we were not about to move all our stuff back! But being out of the house for a few months, we realized we really did not need it, we were kind of comfy in this house, and have plans to make it really nice and stuff, so we decided to sell our other one. We even spent all spring “polishing it” as the realtor’s call it, so the house is in real good shape, has NOTHING wrong with it, and is move-in ready.

It really is a nice homestead (house, barn, sheep, fruit trees, stone fruit, winter hay…everything included, at a fair price for this area ($174,000). But it has not sold.

So, we are at the point where something has to happen. It has sat vacant now for a year (on the market 3 months) so we either have to move back in, rent it, or sell it. We just had a really rough winter last winter, and do not want to repeat that. I know a person should not go by what happened in the past, but it was a tough winter! Now this year is looking like a repeat. :-(
 
leila hamaya
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Travis Johnson wrote:

So, we are at the point where something has to happen. It has sat vacant now for a year (on the market 3 months) so we either have to move back in, rent it, or sell it. We just had a really rough winter last winter, and do not want to repeat that. I know a person should not go by what happened in the past, but it was a tough winter! Now this year is looking like a repeat. :-(



i personally think you should approach the people who offered to buy but needed some time for their house to sell, at what i will assume was a good price that you agreed....contact them and say you are willing to explore a lease with option to buy. see what they say.

i leave it up to you if you wanted to get your realtor in on it, or just get out of real estate listing contract by saying...you are going to rent it instead, and arent going to sell. that way there is no realtor fee...when and if it does sell in 2 years...

then at the least you could sign on for lease for 2 years...if those people buy it all the better....and if not, you keep all the rent and especially the "option" money...which is usually 1%-5% of purchase price.

if it really is just a matter of them selling their home to qualify for mortgage, then they should be able to buy before two years is up. then it's a win win for you both.

worse case scenerio, you could end up having to evict if people dont uphold their end, but then they forfeit the upfront money, and you have that in writing in the "option" aggreement...it's clear if you did have to evict you could evict in a few months. but with the upfront money...well you get more than if you risked that for only 2 months upfront. that's incentive for them to come through...and additionally...in all likelihood they will be nicer to the house and land...more so than just tenants. because they will want to potentially buy, you will get someone more concerned with upkeep and such.

it may make sense to do a straight lease...and have a separate "lease option agreement"...or just in a lease with option agreement...all in one doc. anyway i am maybe making it more confusing, but it does not have to be a complicated doc, simple is good, spelling out everything important is good...but it is something you should be able to work out on your own.

but even a late rent payment will technically disqualify the lease option part...so only ON TIME rent payments count for the lease with option.
this is some motivation for someone to come through with timely rent payments....the only way to keep their exclusive right to buy, and have that down payment count...is to make on time payments, no hassle.

anywho thats what i would do.
 
leila hamaya
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one more point about the lease option - people dont haggle as much on price, you could set price 5,000 - 10,000 higher than their offer.
it is more like - you set down terms, cause you will be locked into selling at that price...and have more say to begin with...

a counter offer. the extra $ for the being cool to work with them to do the lease with option.....
 
Travis Johnson
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The real estate agency has been a nightmare.

I think they broke contract, but I am not sure. I looked into the Maine Real Estate Commission, but they said they will not deal with contract disputes, so I thought they were pretty much worthless as a watchdog agency for consumers.

The issue is, the regular realator could not be there to show the house for the people who wanted to buy the house, but could not get a double-mortgage. So she got her real estate agency boss to show the house. He showed up an hour early and so we had this hour long conversation with him about how to make the house sell, what we could do to make it sell, and basically talked to him as if he was our regular real estate agent. I mean, it was the same company, and he was there to represent us in showing the house. Then the realtor shows the house and finds out the buyer does not have a realtor, but loves the house, so he signs up as the buyer's real estate agent. I witnessed this first hand!

Buyer/Seller real estate agents are allowed in Maine...but in February our contract specifically says we did NOT want that.

It would be like having your attorney refer you to another attorney because he was on vacation, spilling your guts about the case thinking he is giving you legal advice, and then come to find out, he ends up being the attorney for the guy suing you. That would NEVER be allowed in court because it is conflict of interest. In this case we said we did NOT want an agent to represent both buyer and us. And it could hurt us financially because the real estate agent knew a lot about our selling concerns. At one point we mentioned throwing in a few more acres for the sell, for Katie and I, just a question about whether he thought that was a good idea or not, and he told the guy wanting to buy the house that even more land could come with it. That was not the case, Katie and I never talked aboit it enough to make a decision.

So to me, it is obvious the real estate agency has no regard for our best interest, but rather theirs.

Now they are saying, even if we fire them, they can get 4% of the sell price of the house...until next August.

I think that is bovine pasture droppings. They disregarded what Katie and I said in our contract, yet in order to get the buyers commission; signed up to be the buyers represenative. But now that they are fired, they want to enforce the part where they get paid a commission for our house still. I say they broke contract and all parts of that contract are broken, not just the parts that benefit them.


 
leila hamaya
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yeah that sucks, and agreed, it's a clear conflict of interest.
they won't be able to hold you to contract, if it really comes down to it. you are the owner, and you have the right to back out with them, especially AFTER the date of your listing contract. you have the right to take the house off the market.

they can ...say or act like...they should be entitled....and unfortunately in a small town...as i imagine...word gets around...
well you can do it...but they might find out. BUT try to see them enforce it anyway.  they probably wouldnt actually try to enforce it...cause of that...and because they probably won't get anywhere with that.

now if you bypass that broker, which sounds like you have cause to do so...i suppose you would have to get your buyers on board.

i would explain to them that you think that's shiesty that they changed that up and swooped in on them. and yeah get them to agree...by pass the realtor. say you are just going to rent it, take it off the market. then quietly, do the lease option with buyer, and ask them not to disclose that to agent. and since you wouldnt be actually selling it for 2 years from now ish....you should have no obligation to pay realtor fee.

but now, you might want to have a new broker, find someone you trust more, potentially...for later....but yeah sounds like you should find someone else.
if your renting to these people...you could click with them and feel comfortable going at the eventual sale without a realtor. or maybe...if there are any issues or problems...you might want to seek a new agent...to do the title stuff and work out any issues.

or you might just...skip paying the fee and do it yourself, especially if the situation has thus far worked out well...and they come through with rent and eventual purchase.
maybe instead...get a lawyer just to finalize everything, or CHOSE with the buyer to use the same person...to just cross all t's and dot all i s...when the sale finalizes.
 
Travis Johnson
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I have no issue with just using a lawyer. I always have a few lawyers on retainer anyway. A personal attorney. A business attorney for state stuff, and then one for federal stuff.

I hate how real estate is sold anyway. Katie and I are suppose to run into the house and hide while people look at our house. I do not do that selling a skidder or something, and the prices of heavy equipment make a house look cheap! I tell the person looking at the skidder what is wrong with it, its history, what I used it for, and why I am selling it, and they ultimately decide if they want to buy it. Ultimately we agree on a price.

The way i look at it is, as the seller, either I agree to the final price, or I do not. If I do not, then the buyer cannot buy it. A buyer cannot buy what is not for sale; it is all pretty simple. It does not matter if it is a 10 cent glass of lemonade, or a 10 million dollar logging deal. Zero's do not matter.

I do not want the buyer moving into the house and having regret, and at the same time we should not have regret either. That is when the parties know the price is fair.
 
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If it’s not exactly a sellers’ market at the moment, and other options have risks, how about advertising it as a holiday destination – working farm for city slickers? We call them ‘Farm Stays’.

It could be self-maintained or the holidayers stay with you and the family as part of the experience – meals included.

It won’t matter if your Winter is approaching, people will consider it regardless as long as the place is well maintained and there’s things to do.

Though, you may want to do some homework on insurance protection – whatever is necessary in the US or the State.

Farm Stays are usually, but not always, tied in to other local community experiences e.g. local arts & crafts, vineyards, fishing, bike/4WD tracks, other things to do in the area, whatever.

Here’s an example:

FARM STAYS
 
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are you saying its time to sell out, move to the beach, get a condo, a convertible and big floppy hat
 
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> agent...
Per Leila. And maybe "ask around" from a couple of reliable locals; lawyers would be good, but anybody reliable with smarts that knows business in your area that you respect and trust somewhat. See what the "buzz" about the guy and that type of contract might be.

> do what...

Any progress you make depends to some extent on how you deal with the agent. Once you're decided on that (not necessarily taken any action, just settled in you own family mind how it's going to be handled), it doesn't clutter up the "table" and other decisions are going to be easier.

That said, seems like a freebie to follow up with the buyer that specifically stated they want to rent and buy in spring. Why not write a rent-to-buy offer with the terms you feel necessary; consider variations so you have some flexibility for counter offers. What I mean, figure out some variations that _might_, depending, work for you and do it now, ahead of time; this gets some thought in and avoids totally winging it when things go off script later.

The rent for rent-to-buy, as I understand common practice, is higher than what the place would normally rent for; but I'm not very RE savvy, even though I'm a landlord, so that's just a heads up, not wisdom. I personally think a real estate lawyer would be worth consulting on this because there will be options that should be looked at which you probably won't know about yourself. A lawyer, not an agent...

> renting

I don't know your experience; maybe you're on all this already. Here's some things I get reminded of occasionally. Be clear in the rental agreement who does what for maintenance (eg. snow plowing, mowing) - anything that pretty much _must_ be done to keep the property in shape. I have started to believe that landlords should pay for the really necessary infrastructure maintenance - the stuff that will badly hurt them if left undone for more than one or two cycles. In the heart of civilization, that's garbage pickup, snow removal (city comes down on you), probably heat. Heat is a problem because it can vary so much and the tenant has a lot of control over the usage; it should have some "motivation" attached to it.  But a total lack of heat can really mess up a standard building if average temps drop below about 28F for more than a few days so this falls into the "must-do" maintenance category. I think the next tenant, if I decide to continue, I'll keep the critical accounts in my name, pay the regular bills, and add it to the next month's rent (and put this explicitly into the lease). That way usage comes back on the tenant, fairly, but I'm in the loop to make sure the property gets what it needs to survive.

Well, you have offers so that's good. Cash flow is bothering I'm sure, so maybe rent, as possible. Trade off between simple sale and longer relationship. But, as I think you know, nothing anybody says means much except as conversation until it's on paper and signed. But conversations provide leads which can be followed up when you've decided the relative merits of renting.


Regards,
Rufus
 
Travis Johnson
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F Agricola wrote:If it’s not exactly a sellers’ market at the moment...



It is a real sellers market here, some to do with a lack of houses, but also the booming economy. I got a job this year mowing the sides of the road because my friend could not find a worker to do it. Last year he had 28 people working for him, this year he could only get 8. I just saw a box truck yesterday with a sign on it saying they were hiring electricians. And in one town in Maine, they had their plumber retire, and they were so desperate, the town put up a $7000 sign on bonus to get one in town. I never thought I would see the day where the economy was so good!

Ever since the housing crisis that took out the economy in 2007, there have been no spec houses and major commercial housing projects, so there is a real shortage of houses for people. Maine also has the problem that many houses here are old, but with banks being very restrictive on things, they will not finance old houses, so perfectly good houses get torn down all the time just because they do not meet inspection criteria. It kind of is a perfect storm for old houses. Millennials as a whole (not everyone obviously) have no home building skills, and so banks are finding that if the lend money to houses that need even some fixing up. they go without it, and soon the house they loaned money on has lost its value instead of gained it. So now they only loan money to almost perfect houses. It really is a shame because I can think of about 10 houses near me that have been knocked down because they did not meet these new stringent financing requirements.

The house I am selling does not have that issue, its just its location. It is very rural here, but that is a two way argument. If you do not live here the argument is:

It is a half hour drive to anywhere.


Or counterargument is:

But it is within a half hour of everything!

Waterville, Belfast, Unity, Newport, Bangor...But I recognize that you have to live here, get to know the backroads before people realize that. For instance Super-Walmart. It is only 18 miles away, but it is all backroads until you get there. You actually see the sign to Walmart just as you get on a major road. Before that it is 17-1/2 miles of back roads.
 
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Travis, what are you and your family`s thoughts about moving back into the bigger house? I know you've been rocking the tiny house thing, but maybe you made that bigger house nicer for... your own family. You could still rent out the smaller house and make some income, right?
 
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Tereza Okava wrote:Travis, what are you and your family`s thoughts about moving back into the bigger house? I know you've been rocking the tiny house thing, but maybe you made that bigger house nicer for... your own family. You could still rent out the smaller house and make some income, right?



We would be okay with that.

In a way it is almost easier because this house (the Tiny House) is smaller in size, and rougher in shape, and so it would rent out for less money per month, but still has (4) individual bedrooms. Today that is important because most families are blended, so there are plenty of kids.

And we have thought of that.
 
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I think what Katie and I are really finding out is: there are many people that want to homestead, but they just do not have enough money to afford it. And while we could look for homebuyers instead of homesteaders, those buyers tend to want to live closer to urban hubs, and not in the rural location that we do.

It is hugely frustrating because we have the ideal location for a homesteader, but few can afford paying $750 a month for a mortgage. And for those that can, they really do not want to mess with animals, they just want to go to work, come home, and watch Netflix.

So it is truly location, location, location...its just the ones who wish to live in this location, lack the money too. And Katie and I have really tried to make it work for these people because we would much prefer to see the barn with animals in it rather than a electrical shop housing spools of wire or something. But even with included sheep, and winter hay...because we did not want people to worry about their hay needs this late in the season...$750 a month is just more than they can afford.

 
leila hamaya
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Travis Johnson wrote:I think what Katie and I are really finding out is: there are many people that want to homestead, but they just do not have enough money to afford it. And while we could look for homebuyers instead of homesteaders, those buyers tend to want to live closer to urban hubs, and not in the rural location that we do.

It is hugely frustrating because we have the ideal location for a homesteader, but few can afford paying $750 a month for a mortgage. And for those that can, they really do not want to mess with animals, they just want to go to work, come home, and watch Netflix.

So it is truly location, location, location...its just the ones who wish to live in this location, lack the money too. And Katie and I have really tried to make it work for these people because we would much prefer to see the barn with animals in it rather than a electrical shop housing spools of wire or something. But even with included sheep, and winter hay...because we did not want people to worry about their hay needs this late in the season...$750 a month is just more than they can afford.



yeah totally, thats definitely THE problem...and why so much of what was once good farmland is all mcmansions now...sadly...

and TOTALLY this is the biggest problem we are facing in terms of bringing new generation farmers online...so to speak...the next generation, and my generation...even our really want to be farmers despite all the down sides...have faced extremely out of wack real estate prices for land.

there could be solutions, we keep trying to make solutions...i'd like to see more progress.
this is one thing where i dont get it...how did we not already develop ways to do CSA type gardening...why is this not ALREADY a thing...and having sensical ways for...setting aside a certain amount of land in each community dedicated to farming? massive amounts of cheap land available, but ONLY for the farmers/animal grazers, etc...and this is already THE WAY it is....

like how did we not already have this established...certain lands free or small fee for  farming use, open community owned land dedicated to growing food locally, at every locale.
given to those who are willing to do the work to produce food for the community. in older societies that was the growing trend..there were once "commons" and places for those who would do this in more communal type ways...

but with the whole...private property paradigms taking over...and now even state and government lands...well i do not get why the state governments do not make more opportunities for people to have various spaces dedicated to both food growing and housing people...abandoned lands too, etc....

but anywho  in the current whirl - $750 per month is definitely cheap for what you are talking about -it would be twice that where i am at, but i am in a high land price area...and even by most areas on the west coast i have been - yeah twice that at least for what you describe.

i know maine is a good deal cheaper in land prices, though. but yeah...idk what to tell you on that, but i think you could find someone who would not see that as too expensive.

BUT it does sound like your having second thoughts about selling your home. maybe all this is some manifestation of your ambiguity...like you might actually want to give up on selling...cause youre not sure you want to sell. in which case maybe you should look to just a straight rental, although...well it is a job, you know. but i think...it's doable. you could screen for nice neighbor and hold onto the house for in case you actually dont want to sell.

you at least need to get clear on that. if you might want to not sell and keep it, move back in eventually.
 
leila hamaya
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and maybe tangetial...but something related to the above thoughts i recently read and liked enough to bookmark---->

https://permaculturenews.org/2019/09/17/access-to-land-is-a-barrier-to-simpler-sustainable-living/
 
Travis Johnson
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leila hamaya wrote:BUT it does sound like your having second thoughts about selling your home. maybe all this is some manifestation of your ambiguity...like you might actually want to give up on selling...cause youre not sure you want to sell.



Good gosh, no, this is not the case at all.

We definitely want to sell, not just this house that is up for sale, but also another house in another state that we own.

But we had that problem when we lived in the bigger house, we looked across the road, saw this Tiny House and wanted to fix it up, but it was 5 years before we got over here. Now that the bigger house is done...really the complete homestead package, we want to turn our attention to this Tiny House and get it finished up. My concern is that we will not get that fully done before we have to move to my parents house and take care of them. And when you are not living in a home, you just do not have the same sort of attention to detail, the same sort of drive to improve them.

That is why I do not have much heartburn about free farm lands. I have always been nice my entire life, and have given a lot away, but I have learned when people do not have some sort of investment in what they were given, they give it no value, do not take care of it, or cherish it. Being a large landowner has its benefits of course, but at the same time, there is a lot of responsibility and expense.
 
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