I'd pass on it, too. 1- the ravine is not a good thing, 2- yars slops toward the house...not good in heavy rains, could flood. 3- One and half hours of driving each day to work, the amount of gas will kill the pocket book. 4- will be hard to sell with no back yard and the ravine. 5- "It is in a nice neighborhood (can't keep the TT at home but reasonably priced storage 2 min away) and it is in a decent school" I want the TT with me and a Great School system NOT a decent one. JMHO.
it is not an hour and a half. It is a 30 min drive for me and a 15 min drive for DH. (the 2 of us work 45 min apart making finding a home in an ideal location tough).
To the others- the house itself is perfect (except for no window on that downstairs side, it has them on that side on the upstairs). The house has tons of windows, just not there. The yard is bad but the neighborhood is good (has covenants but no HOA, I can park it at house to clean it or work on it, just not store it there). It is a debate and that is why I am looking for the words of wisdom from those that have been there. We are gonna look at 4 more houses on sat and look at this one again on sat. Maybe I will try to take a picture of the ravine for a better idea.
As a geologist, I would not buy a house already down slope, five feet from the edge of a ravine. Especially in an area of new construction, which has drastically changed the drainage patterns that created the ravine.
Even if I knew the slope was stable, and believed that it was never going to rain hard enough, or snow enough and melt, to change that ravine, my wife would never have let me buy a house backing on a ravine when we had small children that would be attracted to it.
Unless you are calling something a ravine that is not really a ravine, and the problem is not as drastic as you make it sound. I would still hire a geological engineer for a hazard survey on the lot, before buying. The contractor may have done this, then made his own decisions about risk.
I have to agree with most. Here in Southern California we have seen many house go down ravines in rain storms. We don't have that many rain storms here and it does happen. In other places where rain is frequent no way would I like to be on the edge of anything or at the bottom of any hill for that matter.
Has to be a nice house out there for you. One other thing that at this time doesn't seem too important but as time goes by and you look back I think you'll kick yourself if you don't at least try to keep the RV at home. It is so much nicer to have it there all the time. I think someone mentioned the resale, that's a biggie too. Good luck, can't wait to hear how this goes.
we actually first had keeping the TT at home but unfortunately, our budget is on the small end so everything that allows the TT at home is either in a bad school district, in need of serious (major repair), or on a super busy road that I would worry about my DD standing at the bus stop or visiting friends on a bike or whatever. I am going to switch realtors because this one has been no help on advice for anything. Maybe a new realtor will find us something better. Thanks for all the words of wisdom, you have given us much to think about.
Pass. We had a very similar yard in Greenville, South Carolina, and it was hard to resell when we needed to move. All of the realtors who showed it said their clients said, "Not enough yard."
People like yards. Even if they don't use them, they like to have them there. Plus having a corner lot will make it even harder. Watch the "For Sale" signs on houses on corners. They stay on the market forever. Even faster--drive up to the house at night. Watch your headlight reflections on the front of the house. Do you want to see headlights ever few minutes at night? You're in an area with too many house choices to compromise on big issues.
I live on 2 acres so you know my opinion of small lots. My kids are 18, 15 and 11. Part of the joy of raising kids for us has been sitting in a room in the back of the house and watching them play in the back yard. My 18 year old still pitches baseballs to my 11 year old all the time back there.
I agree with a lot of the folks here--even if the house is perfect, the yard would break the deal with me. When I built my home, I found the lot FIRST, built an RV site on the lot (full hookups), THEN had a contractor build me our "forever" home while we were on site.
It was a HUGE difference of being able to make modifications or be on hand to answer questions. If I were you, consider BUILDING your dream home instead of moving into someone else.
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We are currently shopping for our 1st home. We have a 5 yr old DD. We are a little torn so I am looking to seek some advice from those that have been there. We have found the perfect house (basically our dream home) on a horrible lot. It is in a nice neighborhood (can't keep the TT at home but reasonably priced storage 2 min away) and it is in a decent school system. The house is a reasonable drive to work for both of us (our jobs are over 45 min apart). The big problem is the lot has literally zero backyard. You walk out the back door and within 5 feet there is a sharp dropoff into a small ravine type of area. The house is a corner lot and has a nice side yard. The front yard has a slight slope down to the house. The house has tons of windows on the front and back and some windows on the side but no windows on the downstairs side that has the side yard. We are thinking of having the builder (it is an already finished new construction house) add a deck and fence the side yard for us (effectively cutting off the danger from the ravine). The lot is 0.3 acres w/ a 2300 sq ft home. Does this sound like a reasonable plan for raising a 5 yr old? Should we bypass the perfect house in a good location for something on a better lot? I am not looking for advice on buy vs not buy but more for would this be ok for our family situation? How important is back yard vs side yard for play? We already compromised on having the TT at home but should we compromise on yard when it comes to DD? Thanks
With some appropriate safety precautions (fencing might be needed for the ravine, depending on how dangerous it is) this house sounds fine to me. We have 3 kids, and lived in a house with a minimal back yard and a decent size side yard (.25 acre lot) with no windows on the side-yard side of the house. No problem... On such a small lot, you can hear kids easily through an open window. If the street/traffic is a concern, fencing around the side yard might be in order.
Also take into account appropriate cycling and walking space. It's good for kids to be able to ride their bikes safely and walk to friends' houses.
As the kid(s) get older, the ravine could become a fun feature - potentially dangerous, but if it's not too horrible, also potentially fun.
I wouldn't have any problem considering such a house.
BTW: In terms of location, IMO the most important things to consider are the quality of the local schools, community involvement and support for those schools (do they routinely vote down levies? if so, keep looking), and the nature of the kids' potential peer groups. e.g. Does the community attract people whose values are similar to your own? The larger community of kids will reflect some of these overall values and influence your own kids' values. You might think you can counter this effect, but over time your kids will end up being more influenced by their peers than by you.
I don't want to be snarky, but how is this a perfect house when it has: 1) a deep ravine 5 feet from the back door: 2) a front yard that slopes to the house: 3) a side yard with no fence and no windows from which to peek out and keep an eye on kids; 4) not enough room to store the RV: and, 5) is on a corner lot?
Have you checked to see what Covenants, Codes, and Restrictions have been placed on the deed by the developer? IMO, that is the FIRST thing to ask for when looking at property! Finding out that there are CCR's that you don't like AFTER you sign the final papers is NOT a good thing!
EDIT: Something else to consider is what happens when one or two (or more) children arrive? Will that house be "perfect" with 2, 3, or 4 kids living there? Or, will you have to go house hunting again?
Planning ahead is a GOOD idea!
2nd EDIT: "(has covenants but no HOA,...)" Sorry, I missed that part. If there is no HOA, there is no enforcement of the CCR's. They are not laws, so local law enforcement personnel have no authority to enforce them. A neighbor could, however, file a civil suit over them, I suppose.
Another civil issue would be potential liability. If somebody gets hurt in that ravine, what will YOUR liability be? Will that ravine have any effect on your insurance rates? What if a wildfire breaks out in that brush down there? Will your house be safe from it?
Again, I would look elsewhere.
* This post was
edited 06/09/12 10:12am by mowermech *
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