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Old 01-03-2016, 02:19 PM
 
4,641 posts, read 3,967,018 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunbiz1 View Post
Not sure if you're still here but:

You're right, and not just in Montana. To simplify matters, I am now focusing on at least partially developed rural land.
Good plan.

A fallen down looking farmstead can usually be dozed and cleaned up. Plus there will be small outbuildings that might be usable with minor repair.

I prefer old houses with good bones to restore but that is NOT the cheap way to go.

The advantages I can think of to buying old are the existing infrastructures ---water drinking if passes tests, water irrigation maybe, septic which might need overhaul, electric, maybe NatGas, telephone, fencing likely needs overhauled, & mature landscape & perhaps apple trees. The biggest plus to me, after water& power, is big established trees and shrubs.

Also consider there is money in old structures with great beams or desireable barn wood. There are salvage company guys that pay to tear down & doze site for the taking of materials. I do not have experience with that but it is something to consider before pushing in heap & burning. Several years ago I knew man who sold the rusty tin roof sheets off his outbuildings for enough to buy brand new metal roofing installed. The rusty ones where put through a roller to flatten and installed in high-end showers at Big Sky.

Also sometimes there are people around who do buy and move old structures.

Last edited by historyfan; 01-03-2016 at 02:21 PM.. Reason: grammar
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Old 01-03-2016, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
7,540 posts, read 12,571,634 times
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There's a kid in Livingston who advertises on Craigslist, who makes a business of tearing down old structures for the aged wood and if desired, rebuilding them with fresh wood -- which he'll then come back and replace with new wood once it gets aged enough to be salable. Great way to keep your corrals and outbuildings in good repair at zero cost.

I once lived in a place that had a fallen-down barn past any usefulness whatever (it was flat on the ground and apparently had been randomly driven over by a truck) ... kept me in firewood for several winters, with no more bother than walking out to the pile and jerking a piece loose.
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Old 02-18-2016, 03:58 PM
 
1,187 posts, read 592,639 times
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Hello again,

Does anyone happen to know if the Jefferson river between Whitehall and Twin Bridges has flooding issues due to annual snow melt etc?. I have searched exhaustively online to no avail.

TY in advance for any further assistance.
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Old 02-18-2016, 04:16 PM
 
4,641 posts, read 3,967,018 times
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There are areas of high water flooding & backwater sloughs. Usually a resident moose or two which is indicative of area with willows & standing water. The Jefferson can run hard & fast in Spring and then be rather low for rest of year with plentiful gravel bars.

I'd contact the NRCS office in Whitehall & ask if they can give you specifics. They are an excellent resource & nice too.
Local Service Centers | NRCS Montana

And perhaps the county extension office will know something, though employees tend to not be long term residents.
Madison County, Montana
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Old 02-20-2016, 02:11 PM
 
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What I am seeing, is someone that thinks Montana will be like a lot of other places in the country. Where you can get a few acres, drill a shallow well for water, hook up to utilities, and have a rural home. Montana cannot be compared with those type of places where you can do it, especially do it with a reasonable price.

Lets look at problems with what you are considering. They have all been pointed out to you.

1: Cheap property, is recreation property, not to build your home on. Even that is not cheap. It is land, that really is not good for ranching, farming, or building homes and having water and utilities. Used for hunting, fishing, camping in the summer. It is cheap, because it is useless property for normal use.

2: Living outside town, you will want a 4X4 high clearance vehicle. You will probably need a tractor, etc., with a snow blade to clear your own roads of snow. That is why you look in parking lots, and in the winter, well over half will be SUVs and Pickups both with 4X4 drive.

3: You will very often have to put in a cistern and haul water, as you cannot find water when you drill, and many a property have tried to drill 2 or 3 wells, and no water. You will probably have to haul water in a 350 gallon tank on a pickup (4X4) to haul water year around, that you keep for that use.

4: Utilities may or may not be available. If you have to run electric line to the home, 1/4 mile can cost you $20,000 or more. If further it gets real expensive. Putting in an adequate alternative for reliable power, requires solar cells, batteries, and a diesel generator as backup. Again quite expensive. Phone line, the same. Cell phones may or may not work from the property. Very often they don't. Television will be by satellite system. Without phone line, their are two alternatives for Internet. One is a satellite Internet system. Other is one via cell phone which is only available if you have cell phone availability on the property. If you have satellite Internet system, you can use a VOIP phone for phone service getting it over the Internet. I personally live on 5 acres directly across the county road separating the cit and county. I have gone to a VOIP (NetTalk) phone for a land line. I pay annually but it works out costing $3.75 a month, for unlimited calling to USA and Canada. Works as well as the former land line, and actually has better sound, with all the extra features often costing more with regular phone service included free.

I am going to recommend as I have others, get in touch with a farm and land real estate broker, and look for a property that is a size you can use for your use. One with utilities available, with water easy to drill to, and in the long run you will come out far ahead of type of land you have been looking at. Can cost less money in the long run.

I recently made this recommendation to a couple moving to the Billings area. They had the same type problem you are having finding property. As soon as they took my approach, they quickly found an ideally located 40 acre parcel which had been cut off from a large ranch by a county road. The land older sold the 40 acres to them. Has everything they want including utilities, and available water. Very reasonable drive to his employment. Good pasture, for their kids horses, and for their dog kennel. No problem as it is agriculture land, and other homes are on big ranches all far enough away the dogs will be no problem.

I am speaking as someone that from 1972 till I finally retired was an investment/farm and ranch/exchange broker. I have seen too many people like you that were trying to work with house salesmen/saleswomen who really do not understand your needs and desires. They really do not understand your needs, and are just looking to make a sale. Get a farm and ranch broker, who know of smaller parcels suitable for your use.

Good luck.
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Old 02-20-2016, 05:52 PM
 
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
7,540 posts, read 12,571,634 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunbiz1 View Post
Does anyone happen to know if the Jefferson river between Whitehall and Twin Bridges has flooding issues due to annual snow melt etc?. I have searched exhaustively online to no avail.
Be very cautious in that area. Old maps show a lot of the low and flatland in that valley as swamp. I looked extensively along that very stretch and most available parcels seem to come in two basic types: land that seep-floods, and rocky land that has no water unless you drill halfway to China (an expensive and sometimes fruitless pursuit if you're up in the rocks). Be careful even with a developed parcel -- I looked at one with an older house and barn at a very reasonable price, and turns out the whole thing sheet-flooded in wet years, even tho it was well away from the river. Did I mention old maps? believe them!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldtrader View Post
I have gone to a VOIP (NetTalk) phone for a land line. I pay annually but it works out costing $3.75 a month, for unlimited calling to USA and Canada.
<goes off, looks it up>
FREE Home Phone Service Local and Long Distance Calls VoIP - netTALK
That looks like a good prospect. They're not gouging on the hardware (under $20) and it can make do with a crap connection (needs just 128k up and down, even horrible satellite connections can do that much). Thanks!
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:09 AM
 
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
7,540 posts, read 12,571,634 times
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Drive from Twin Bridges to Silver Star:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7z2nG8-vOkU

Probably not what most out-of-state buyers had in mind.
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Old 02-23-2016, 05:51 PM
 
4,641 posts, read 3,967,018 times
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I drove along the Jefferson yesterday. There are many for sale signs.

I wouldn't buy anything East of the big irrigation ditch/canal. I think of West of that canal to the river it would get flooded frequently. As well as West of the river until the plateau area starts at base of foothills.

Look for sagebrush. That area is desert dry without irrigation. Sagebrush will not grow in wet flood prone areas. So if sagebrush is growing on your parcel, I would bet it wouldn't flood because it hasn't in the past
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Old 02-27-2016, 09:07 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,989 times
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Do not buy in Ponderosa Pines. Do your research. If you get a lot down closer to Clarkston Rd. you may be ok, but there are sure some crazy hill people out there, who will try to drive you off your land. I have heard this from many people who went out there to "homestead", and now you are looking at their properties for sale I am sure.

Let me tell you a story about how we were speculating out there: We drove up Pole Gulch Rd. to check out a hilltop property, and apparently the road goes right through some people's property, and they just build right up to the edge of the road. Anyways, we are driving, and pass a bunker house with angled windows for shooting (don't believe me? why don't you take a drive?) and were passing a person feeding horses, when she turns, picks up a bale of hay, and throws it into the road AT OUR TRUCK as we were driving. I did not stop. If something is cheap here, you probably can't access it, grow anything, graze anything (always get a soil sample if you don't see evidence of cattle or horses), get septic/well, or build on it. People here aren't fools, we know the value of this place.

There are 4 problems with those lots:
1. access
2. neighbors
3. property lines
4. septic
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Old 02-27-2016, 09:12 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,989 times
Reputation: 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reziac View Post
Drive from Twin Bridges to Silver Star:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7z2nG8-vOkU

Probably not what most out-of-state buyers had in mind.
To be fair, there looks like a lot of smoke in the sky. I think that the Jefferson River valley, especially down by Sheridan (where technically it is the Ruby River valley) is stunning. Branham Lakes anyone? I mean, that is RIGHT THERE outside of Twin Bridges. But yea, imagine some mountains in the background of this drive, and that is what you get outside of big cities in Montana.
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