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Old 10-14-2012, 12:46 PM
 
2 posts, read 6,014 times
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My other half and I would like to move out to Trinidad, CO in the next 3-5 years. My dad purchased a parcel of the Santa Fe Trail Ranch, and during my trips out there to help him over the last few years, I fell in love with the area.

I grew up on a 17 acre mini-ranch in the rural foothills of the Sacramento Valley, and I currently live in Grass Valley, CA, which has a population of about 30,000. Unlike my brothers and sisters, I try to avoid the cities and thrive on the country life. There's nothing quite like getting down and dirty and carving out a wonderful piece of heaven for yourself!

I know for a lot of people, the relative isolation of Trinidad can be a problem. Being 1+ hour away from "major shopping" would drive my siblings up the wall, but I absolutely adore the small town feel. Even the 30,000 people that GV has makes it seem crowded in my eyes. I hate the fact that I could throw a rock and probably knock out a neighbor. ><

Anyway, we were thinking of possibly buying a small house in the town of Trinidad, and then selling and upgrading after a few years to one of the ranch properties. We would love to buy a parcel right off, but saving up much in our current situation is practically impossible. (Thanks, CA.)

Now that you know my life story, here are some funky, spastic questions I have for you wonderful people:

If buying in Trinidad, are there any areas that we should avoid? Through my direction retardedness, I've gone down just about every street in town. There were quite a few dilapidated homes and quite a bit of graffiti, but no bars on the windows or homeless in the streets. I know here in GV, the "bad part" means the section where broke families and new high school grads go to rent apartments. I lived in that area for several years myself, and the worst that would happen would be too loud parties or getting held up by an old burnout hippie who wanted to talk to you about balloons or something. I've never had to lock my door at night, and you can leave your car window down without fear of anything getting stolen. I highly doubt that many other places can share these experiences, but hopefully the tougher part of Trinidad is nothing like the tougher part of, say, Sacramento. You don't go out at night in certain areas of Sac.

Is there much gang activity or drug use in Trinidad? Never had to experience living in a town with visible gang activity, so the graffiti kind of threw me off a bit. As far as drug use, we have the usual small amounts of meth, cocaine, shrooms, etc. Nevada County is also HUGE in the marijuana industry, so I'm definitely used to the area smelling like skunk right around harvest season. (Hey, more jobs, right?)

On the SFT Ranch, how regulated is the water use? Can you haul water (or get it from your well) and use it for your greenhouse or vegetable garden? I was in town with Dad just before the Water Festival, and it was honestly something I've never thought about. Water is never a problem here, and the people with dead lawns or fields probably just got lazy with their sprinklers. *eyeballs her own dead yard*

Any ideas what the taxes are like on an in-town home with a small parcel vs. a 35 acre parcel with a small house? I've always rented homes, so I wouldn't even know where to start. I hear property taxes are low in CO, but having nothing to compare it to, I'm not sure what low is. I know that the Ranch has $400/yr POA, but they do such a great job with the roads that it's totally worth every penny. Now, if they would just put up a few guard rails...

What's the cost of living compared to other places? In CA, I make about $1,700/month and my husband makes around $1,200/mo (after taxes... dammit). With our combined income, we can barely make ends meet. Between rent, car insurance, car payments, electric bills, propane bills, gas prices, and food prices... yeah, like I said, a bit difficult to save up for anything in CA. (Or anywhere, for that matter.) :|

Is a 2WD car even an option out there during winter? Obviously not on the ranches, but can it pass the test in town? I'm hoping that the road crews are on top of things.

Assuming the job scene is bad, but how bad? Is there work in the surrounding towns, like Raton?
I'm a veterinary asst. and receptionist with dreams of becoming an RN. My other half is a high school grad who has had various store and customer service positions. We're both willing to take any job that can pay the bills.

... I'll probably ask more derpy questions as I think of them. Thanks everyone! Sorry I used up a few minutes of your life!

... Like this one: Is there a limit on domestic pets in town? We have 2 large dogs and 6 cats. Giving them up is not an option.
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Old 10-15-2012, 08:55 AM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,199,178 times
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I lived in Trinidad many years ago & love the historic buildings & homes.

Since you said you were thinking of possibly buying a small house in the town of Trinidad, and then selling and upgrading after a few years, resell potential in the area would be my concern. Plus, some older homes have older home issues of foundation problems, knob & tube wiring, plumbing concerns.

I can't imagine commuting over Raton pass to Raton in the winter.

The economy of Trinidad has always been an issue.

Your father should know the water usage rules at SFT Ranch.

Best of luck with your decisions!
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Old 10-15-2012, 09:15 AM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,199,178 times
Reputation: 4005
SFT Ranch water usage:
http://www.santafetrailranch.com/Wat...2012-09-04.pdf
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:30 PM
 
2 posts, read 6,014 times
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Thank you both for your help! I had no idea the ranch had it's own website. Mentioned it to dad, and he gave me the "Well, duh!" look. ><
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Old 10-20-2012, 03:37 PM
 
Location: OKLAHOMA
1,778 posts, read 3,479,129 times
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I am on the Ranch's website a lot. I am thinking of buying on the Trail myself. In April we'll go out and look at lots. We are thinking of selling a ranch in Eastern OK and one of the possible retirement thoughts are the Santa Fe Trail Ranch.

I am confused, is your father living on the Santa Fe Ranch Subdivision?
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Old 10-15-2013, 11:08 AM
 
Location: OKLAHOMA
1,778 posts, read 3,479,129 times
Reputation: 927
Quote:
Originally Posted by bongo View Post
So you pay 37.00 a month for hook up and say another 35 for water for 70 plus a month. Am I correct. I am saying I'd probably use the most water because we just do. Well, right now we own a ranch so it is hard to tell how much water I use and I am on a well.

Never got a staight answer on what water costs are. Say you have an animal or two (horses) a greenhouse. Kind of wondering what the water bill will be. 70.00 Month isn't bad. It is what I would expect but am I wrong?
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Old 10-15-2013, 01:32 PM
 
Location: Where the mountains touch the sky
575 posts, read 669,214 times
Reputation: 908
You are over the legal limit on your cats. Three dogs and three cats maximum per household in Trinidad per the municipal code. Also all pets, cats and dogs must be altered and vaccinated.

I think you are over the limit for most cities/towns with your cats. Dogs vary depending on the city. Montrose for example is only two and Colorado Springs and Canon City allow four. Three dogs seems to be a common limit. Of course if you live in a neighborhood with an HOA (homeowner's association) they can allow less than the city limit and that restriction would have to be followed.

Outside of city limits offers you more flexibility but each county is different as to the amount of dogs or cats they allow as pets versus having to apply for a kennel license. so you would need to contact that County government directly to find out.

I would advise against trying to commute to Raton for work from Trinidad. Although the distance is only 21 miles it can be a slow and treacherous drive over Raton Pass. That pass gets some nasty weather in the winter and spring months and road closures are not uncommon.
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Old 10-15-2013, 01:34 PM
 
Location: Where the mountains touch the sky
575 posts, read 669,214 times
Reputation: 908
Oops just realized that I responded to a very old thread! Oh well if anyone else was wondering about pet limits; there you go!
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Old 10-15-2013, 02:05 PM
 
Location: OKLAHOMA
1,778 posts, read 3,479,129 times
Reputation: 927
These are 35 acre lots that is open range meaning cows and there are tons of horses on the Trail. I am referring to the Santa Fe Subdivision on the Raton Pass. Thanks anyway,
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:05 AM
 
Location: high plains
479 posts, read 675,781 times
Reputation: 433
Quote:
Originally Posted by StarrySkiesAbove View Post

I would advise against trying to commute to Raton for work from Trinidad. Although the distance is only 21 miles it can be a slow and treacherous drive over Raton Pass. That pass gets some nasty weather in the winter and spring months and road closures are not uncommon.
did anyone notice how the Pass fared during the recent stormfronts? probably didn't ice up if the highway surface was still warm enough. i'm thinking of driving through it sometime in the next couple of weeks.
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