…I mean…I can’t help but throw out amateur philosophical statements as I write blogs. It is part of my ‘style’, ya know. But, like politics and especially Trumpian politics, readers can only tolerate so much and I may have used up that allowance with the last post. My bad. I wish I had a raven for ya….
So, when in doubt, update. First: Sal, the Slayer of men, breaker of hearts, baker of cheesecakes. The quilting queen. Ol’ Sal has just been laid low. Just as she was rocking her rehab and flying past her physio, she caught a bug and is now just another poor invalid convalescing under covers. Well, a limping, smiling, but sleeping-a-lot invalid anyway. Too bad. She was on pace for the 2020 Olympics in Japan. Senior decathlon. We were gonna practice her javelin throwing today. But, it’s not a go. She is ‘on the bench’ for now. She may be on the injured reserve bench for a few extra days.
I hate to say it out loud but an under-the-weather Sal is a lot easier to keep up with. (I needed a rest). Still, we are gonna have to do a few leg exercises if not today, definitely tomorrow. Freshly minced knees need moving or the healing progress doesn’t just stop, it can regress. Maybe when she wakes up…..best to let sleeping quilters lie for now. It is safer for everyone (especially husbands).
But I know her. It is the laying about that will make her mean (well, Tinkerbell mean is still Tinkerbell). If she works that knee, she’ll be in better spirits. So, she’ll be back on her game soon enough. A day or two off is not a bad thing. I’m OK with it. Grateful, actually.
Breaking News! The community property purchase goal of $165K was reached. We needed to raise $115,000 and closed the ‘Go Fund Me’ program at $122,000. That is incredible. Truly amazing. Our community has pretty much consolidated an area around the school as our ‘village’ centre-cum-park-cum-reserve this past few months. That purchase added twenty acres.
That DOES NOT mean intensive development will ensue. Living OTG is not an attitude that fosters much in the way of real estate development in anyone out here. Our idea of ‘development’ is to simply blaze a carefully laid out trail through the woods. Maybe erect a small wooden sign saying, ‘TRAIL’.
We’ll eventually focus some kind of almost-development plans at the special and different location 7 acres on the sea that is being looked at for that kind of thing but much of the rest will remain untouched. Despite a great community effort, the community population will not likely grow by much, if at all. Not quickly, that’s for sure. It is the way of things out here. Preservation trumps development.
But old habits die hard and I look and see and envision ‘developments’ still. NOT so much on our island. Like I said, our OTG island is unlikely to suddenly attract droves of new cabin dwellers. Ain’t gonna happen. But we may get a few more. The pace of growth out here is almost at ‘equilibrium’. We get three or four new folks or families every year in the area and every year we lose about the same number. If anything, I’d venture a guess that we are netting a plus 1 to 3 gain every year. This year there are 235 people listed in our greater community (several islands) and next year, maybe that will increase to 238. Maybe.
But the island next door – the one with the ferry and the stores and the grid – that baby is in demand! Last year there were, on average, only about 8 listings at any one time. All of those listings were outrageously expensive. Averaging with a low number such as 8 is pointless but I’d guess that the ‘average’ small 1600 – 2000 sft older home on a few acres in a nice location (at least a sea view) was in excess of $650K. There were more than a few over $1M. And I can’t think of one below $400k. Getting started at ‘cabin/cottag-ing’ is not an easy entry thing over there.
Some friends, however, have shown interest in doing just that. Friends are usually peers so age is a factor. It is hard to start from scratch anywhere but scratch OTG is a special challenge. If you are over 55, it is a bit late (as a rule) to try and start from bare, unserviced, OTG land. We have had more than a few do it, mind you, but, with the exception of a remarkable few, over 55’s hire younger people to do the majority of the heavy building.
And, when that happens, the cost of building out here goes through the roof. I haven’t priced it recently but getting all-in and operational with solar panels and gensets and water, not to mention boats and docks and ramps cannot likely be done for under under $500 a sft. Even doing it all yourself is closer to $200-250 a sft and that is NOT fancy, fancy. That kind of money would only get ‘pleasant’. That means a million dollars to get a 2000 sft cabin!
“Dave, can’t I get a cabin for less than that?”
Of course you can. But it likely will not be new (unless the land is small or inland). It definitely will be a fixer-upper. It won’t likely have all the ‘systems’ but more likely just be a cobbled and in-need-of-repair-or-replacements-type cabin in need of a lot more money and time. I am pretty sure a savvy buyer could get ten freehold acres inland for around $100-$150K. Any buildings on that would be tear-downs. $150K might buy 2.5 to 5 acres of waterfront or waterview.
Note the key word use of the word ‘freehold’. There are some bargains to be had when the ‘ownership’ structure is hippyesque like co-ops or joint ownerships. That kind of structure usually halves the value and halves the market. And there really is NO market to speak of. Few people can wrap their heads around that kind of thing.
That’s too bad. In the living, in the building, in the relationship to your neighbours and the land around you, title is a non-issue. So what if you are in a co-op? If it is a good one, no problem. If it is a bad one, it is no worse than if you had a freehold bad neighbour next door. However, in the selling of the property, title structure looms larger. Jus’ sayin’….
“Dave! Why you writing so much about nonsense?”
Well, we are in a moho. It is pouring rain. I tapped out on Philosophy. The Cheesecake Queen is sleeping. Typing makes no noise. A man’s gotta do……