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  1. #1
    Mike P's Avatar
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    Checking in

     



    I still read the forum everyday but haven't been posting to much lately so I figured I'd do a catch-up post.

    My hand continues to improve but I'm still pretty much on light duty with it. It's been busy around here though, just not with any of the toys. I sold a 472 Caddy builder I'd been holding on to (the proceeds going in to the Poly/Hemi build).


    There's a small local car show for the local Little League on Saturday that Cade and I will take the 57 Plymouth to.......probably its last outing before it gets torn apart for the Power Steering conversion.


    I've been shuffling the cars around a bit. I picked up what looks to be a well maintain 60,000 mile 03 Eclipse for Donna. The 77 Mustang she's been driving will go reside in storage shed as a backup and I think I have a buyer for her 84 El Camino.


    The biggest project right now is a new house on the concrete pad I had originally poured for a 50 X 60 shop. After thinking and talking about it for the last few years we decided that putting in a manufactured home makes more sense for us than a shop.


    My wife and I both love the house we have, especially the view. In all honesty though it's almost too big for us and would be way too big for just one person when one of us passes. The house does fine for now but if either of us ends up on a walker or wheel chair we'll run into mobility issues getting around in it (narrow hallways and doors and small bathrooms). Short of ripping out the inside of the house and doing a complete remodel there's not an easy fix for that. I watched my mom go thru that as she went from cane to walker to wheel chair to power wheel chair in her house and that caused a big shift in my priorities.


    The house were putting in is relatively small (38 X 28….a bit over 1000 Sq Ft) but should still be comfortable and we'll still have the view of the mountains and hills. Our property is about 2 ˝ acres and with the storage buildings, trees etc you can’t see one house from the other so each has a sense of privacy.


    Right now I’m in the process getting the pad ready and getting the utilities in. 3 of my 4 fence lines are City/County dividing lines. I’m in the county but connected to the City water and sewer so I have to deal with both for permitting.


    We actually don't have any plans to move into the new house for least a few years, in the mean time we'll use it as a guest house. When the time comes to move the plan is for our daughter to move into the "big" house. Missy will probably have at least one (maybe 2) of the Grandkids still in school and living with her when that happens so Donna and I will be handy to keep an eye on them while she’s at work. If and when Donna and/or I get to the point where we need help or can’t drive then it will be payback time and Missy can keep an eye on us .


    So anyway that’s what’s going on going on at Mike’s place right now.



    .
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  2. #2
    40FordDeluxe's Avatar
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    Good to hear everything is all going good Mike. It sounds like you definitely are moving things in a good direction for you and your wife's future. I know many that have not and now are having a really tough time dealing with it.
    Ryan
    1940 Ford Deluxe Tudor 354 Hemi 46RH Electric Blue w/multi-color flames, Ford 9" Residing in multiple pieces
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  3. #3
    johnboy is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    She had quite a bad heart turn a bit over 18 months ago. After having stents inserted She's back to about 75% of what She was. So we too decided to a) downsize the house and eliminate stairs, and b) move closer to town.
    Where we are now is 45 minutes from town, (although I've done it in 23 mins in the Cobra,) and the section we bought (Our New Selection, if you want to why it's called that, Google it,) is just 10 minutes from town, (and the hospital,) and just under 2 acres as against our current 15 acres.
    With bureaucracy and bungling it has taken us nearly 18 months to get it to completion...so good luck Mike. And I can understand the logic of the way you thought it through: we're all getting older, but it's sure as hell the better option!

    And getting your ducks in a row now, when you can, is better than having to get them in a row when you absolutely have to.
    johnboy
    Mountain man.
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    '47 Ford sedan. 350 -- 350, Jaguar irs + ifs.
    '49 Morris Minor. Datsun 1500cc, 5sp manual, Marina front axle, Nissan rear axle.
    '51 Ford school bus. Chev 400 ci Vortec 5 sp manual + Gearvendors 2sp, 2000 Chev lwb dually chassis and axles.
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  4. #4
    Mike P's Avatar
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    ".......It sounds like you definitely are moving things in a good direction for you and your wife's future. I know many that have not and now are having a really tough time dealing with it......"

    "...... And getting your ducks in a row now, when you can, is better than having to get them in a row when you absolutely have to......"

    Ryan, John I think your both right. Seeing what Mom went thru in the 6 years after her stroke was an eye opener and left a pretty deep impression. Every time I came back from seeing her made me look at our house with a different perspective. We are in a position to do this now (and it's not going to get any cheaper as time goes by) so it's a good time to do it. I'm also still in good enough condition that once the house is in I can add the deck and carport (with the help of Cade) that I want.

    The other thing we're doing to protect the property and our investment is putting the property and houses in an irrevocable trust for the Grandkids. That was actually an even harder decision to come to than putting in the new house. After seeing what Medicaid can take away if god forbid either Donna or I have to go on it, we figured it's what we needed to do. Medicaid has a 5 year "look back" window where trusts and gifts can still be taken to recoup Medicaid costs so we wanted to get that clock started.

    Slowly but surely I'm working thru the "to do list". I'll be glad when I can get back to the simple things like building another car.



    .
    johnboy and 40FordDeluxe like this.
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  5. #5
    Mike P's Avatar
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    Another update.

    First the hand. I guess it's healed about as much as it's going to. It's lost a fair amount of strength but is still useable. The thumb joint hurts a bit when the weather changes (good old arthritis) but the wrist doesn't bother me now so I'm still calling it a win.

    And then there's the new house......it has been a looooong time since I've had such an aggravating experience. To make a long story short my property is in the county but surrounded on 3 sides by the small local town. Dealing with the county for permits and inspections wasn't too bad.

    Dealing with the city was an entirely different story. After I bought the place I put it on city utilities (about 20 years ago) and I figured to do the same thing with the new house. After about the third round of going thru the city to try to get the new house hooked up to their utilities I'd had it with them and ended up putting my Well back in service and installing a big enough septic tank and leach field to handle both houses. It was a big expense I hadn't planned for but with the constant price increases the city has scheduled I figure money wise I'll hit the break-even point in about 7 years with what I'll save on the utility bill.

    Anyway as of this morning after 4 months the new house is finally green tagged. The last 2 things are getting the power company out to install the meter and a final walk thru.


    House GT by M Patterson, on Flickr


    There is still a bunch to do. I'm waiting on the engineer plans for the carport that will go the edge of the concrete on the right side of the house. Once the county approves them I'll get the permit and get that put up then I can have gutters put up (they will drain onto the carport roof). Hopefully I'll have that done by Christmas. Early next year I'll also be putting a deck on the front of the house.

    The thing that makes it worth going thru this to me is the view from my living room/front porch.

    House FY by M Patterson, on Flickr


    The front yard is pretty bare right now because of all work putting in the leach field but that should all turn green again next spring. The hill in the back ground has jack rabbits, deer, and even the occasional coyote passing thru.

    In the meantime over the last couple of months Cade and I have installed about 1200' of Cat6 cable for internet service and the new security camera system (we have about 800' more to go). I also built some things for the new place and I'll post some pictures when I finally get then in the house and assembled.


    .
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  6. #6
    34_40's Avatar
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    Seems a few of us are doing the same dance. Chris and I just closed on a house back in Alamogordo New Mexico. We owned this same house 20 years ago! I worked for the water utility there then. It's currently rented and will stay that way until I make the decision to retire. Probably in another few years. I'll probably keep the house here in Mass and spend winters there and visit home and the parents here in the summers..
    NTFDAY, 40FordDeluxe and Driver50x like this.

  7. #7
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    Glad your healing and the place and view look great ! I would have done the same as you, put in your own well and sewer.
    Seth

    God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing. C.S.Lewis

  8. #8
    johnboy is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Bureaucrats and bureaucracy!?!?
    Crikey mate I hear you on that!
    It took us twenty-three months and two weeks from when we bought the property to when we were allowed to move in.
    And 99% of the hiccoughs were the result of prevarication and obfuscation of/by bureaucrats.
    Terribly frustrating.
    It started before we'd even put a shovel in the ground; our access to the place is directly off SH 45, when we bought it the driveway was designated as rural, ie two or three tractor/farm implement movements per week.
    We had to change that to residential with specific measurements of width, depth, size of culvert pipe at guttering on so on ad infinitum.
    Downers are the only company it our area allowed to install driveways on to State Highways.
    We waited for NZ Transport Association to okay our plans, they're 200 miles away; so I couldn't turn up and talk to people, we waited for Downers to turn up and install the driveway, nothing happened. In the finish, I got a mate with a twenty ton digger in, told him "We've got all the relevant measurements; let's just do it. If anything hits the fan I don't know who you are, I've never met you."
    So we did.
    And we still, to this day, do not have permission for that driveway.

    And it just went downhill from there on.

    Right to the final sign off for Code of Compliance.
    Mike P, NTFDAY, 34_40 and 1 others like this.
    johnboy
    Mountain man.
    Some mistakes are too much fun to be made only once.

    '47 Ford sedan. 350 -- 350, Jaguar irs + ifs.
    '49 Morris Minor. Datsun 1500cc, 5sp manual, Marina front axle, Nissan rear axle.
    '51 Ford school bus. Chev 400 ci Vortec 5 sp manual + Gearvendors 2sp, 2000 Chev lwb dually chassis and axles.
    '64 A.C. Cobra replica. Ford 429, C6 auto, Torana ifs, Jaguar irs.

  9. #9
    40FordDeluxe's Avatar
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    Mike, it is looking great! At least you are that far in 4 months! The code game just keeps getting worse!
    Dave Severson and cffisher like this.
    Ryan
    1940 Ford Deluxe Tudor 354 Hemi 46RH Electric Blue w/multi-color flames, Ford 9" Residing in multiple pieces
    1968 Corvette Coupe 5.9 Cummins Drag Car 11.43@130mph No stall leaving the line with 1250 rpm's and poor 2.2 60'
    1972 Chevy K30 Longhorn P-pumped 24v Compound Turbos 47RH Just another money pit
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  10. #10
    Mike P's Avatar
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    We're getting closer the power was connected today.

    “…..Bureaucrats and bureaucracy!?!?.........And 99% of the hiccoughs were the result of prevarication and obfuscation of/by bureaucrats…….”

    Yeah Johnboy this experience has been reminder that the bureaucracy lives only for the bureaucracy.

    The little town that surrounds me has a population of less than 2000. It has its own small police department, a fire station, post office and public works department. It used to be managed by an elected mayor and city council. That seemed to work pretty well. The city budget was always about at the break-even point but the city managed with things like some small federal grants and doing things like acquiring drug seizure vehicles for utility trucks and Police cars. Where the mayor and council were all residents of the town they were pretty good at stretching a buck.

    Then a couple of years ago they hired a City Manager to actually run the town and that’s when things drastically changed. Utilities have doubled, property taxes are going up (again) and city services have been cut and the City Manager is still crying how the town is now in the red. Of course we have new police cars and utility trucks and I’d love to know what the City managers’ salary is.

    The new rules that have been put in place have gotten to the point where a lot of the local contractors will not take on projects inside the city limits……I had to explain to more than one that my property is actually county before they would take on the job.


    “………I would have done the same as you, put in your own well and sewer…….”

    When I originally bought the property it was on its own Well and an old cesspool system. About 20 years ago when the septic started going bad I got the permits and hooked up to City sewer and also had City water run to the property as a backup to the well (just in case). When the pump went out on the well a few years later it made sense to just use city water.

    At least for the next couple of years the house will be used as a guest house until Donna and I move in and then it will be considered a mother in law house by the county. The county Planning and zoning requires that a Guest House/Mother in law house share the utilities with the main house. The City refused to do that and eventually told me would require separate water hook up and meter. Of course that would require trenching all the way to the road and then paying the city to cut the pavement (and pay for patching it afterwards) to access the city's waterline. Then there was the monthly minimum charge to have city sewer and water .........$50 a month provided I didn't use a drop of water.

    While that was bad enough the major reason I went with the well and septic is what I suspect is coming down the road. There are several properties like mine adjacent to or surrounded by the town using city sewer and water. Right now we are paying the same rate for water and sewer as the city residents. I see big rate hikes or even discountenance of services unless we agree to incorporate into the City. In my case my 2 1/2 acres is zoned General Business. The first thing that would happen would be the property would be sub-divided into 2 residential lots. Besides cutting the property value by at least half, then would come the requirements to follow City regulations and of course pay the higher City property tax.

    I wasn't wild about writing out the checks for the well and septic but in the long run I didn't feel like there was much a choice to make. On the bright side my utilities now run $40 a month (electric for the well) instead of what would have been over $200 for both houses.

    Sorry about being so long winded in my venting.


    .
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  11. #11
    NTFDAY's Avatar
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    A 'city manager' is nothing more than a bean counter that can't hold a real job.
    53 Chevy5, johnboy and Driver50x like this.
    Ken Thomas
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  12. #12
    johnboy is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    'Sorry about being so long winded in my venting.'

    Crikey mate, don't apologise; I know exactly where you're coming from.
    Several times over the course of the last couple of years we've both felt so down that we've wished we'd never started this project.
    We're now in the New Plymouth District Council zone, the last place we built was in the South Taranaki Council zone. Our Building Inspector in Sth Tki was a practical bloke, at the final walk through for Code of Compliance, he fond several thing that needed some tinkering to comply. He gave us a list, said "I won't have to come out again, do the jobs, send me a photo of the changes, and I'll tick you off."
    So that's what we did. No problems.
    The NP Inspector came out to inspect for CoC, found one fault, told us to rectify it, we did, he has twenty working days in which to come and check that it's done, he would arrive on the twentieth day, tick it off, then carry on his inspection until he found the next fault, which he would tell us to rectify.
    It would take him another twenty working days (four weeks,) to come and recheck.
    Then he would carry on his inspection until he found the next fault...
    And we're paying for every visit and reinspection.
    I was all for thumping the bastard.
    The builder told me to stay away and he'd handle it.
    "You'll be arrested and charged with 'Assaulting an Officer in the Execution of his Duty,' and you'll finish up with a criminal conviction and be unable to travel."
    So I stayed out of it.

    Sometimes I think it would've been worth it.

    Why couldn't he have done just one inspection, found all the faults and given us a list?
    F*****g bureaucrats!

    And I think you've done the right think by being independent with water and sewerage.
    Last edited by johnboy; 10-08-2019 at 08:44 PM.
    Mike P, NTFDAY and 40FordDeluxe like this.
    johnboy
    Mountain man.
    Some mistakes are too much fun to be made only once.

    '47 Ford sedan. 350 -- 350, Jaguar irs + ifs.
    '49 Morris Minor. Datsun 1500cc, 5sp manual, Marina front axle, Nissan rear axle.
    '51 Ford school bus. Chev 400 ci Vortec 5 sp manual + Gearvendors 2sp, 2000 Chev lwb dually chassis and axles.
    '64 A.C. Cobra replica. Ford 429, C6 auto, Torana ifs, Jaguar irs.

  13. #13
    NTFDAY's Avatar
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    Your bean counters must have taken lessons from our bean counters, either that or they're democrats.
    johnboy, cffisher and 40FordDeluxe like this.
    Ken Thomas
    NoT FaDe AwaY and the music didn't die
    The simplest road is usually the last one sought
    Wild Willie & AA/FA's The greatest show in drag racing

  14. #14
    Mike P's Avatar
    Mike P is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    “….A 'city manager' is nothing more than a bean counter that can't hold a real job…..”

    Yeah Ken, too many times people are put into jobs and do things that are simply designed to justify their positions and pay check. They seem to lose (or never had) the sight of what the position was really established for in the first place. The more complicated they can make things the better. The bureaucracy lives to serve the bureaucracy.



    “…..Several times over the course of the last couple of years we've both felt so down that we've wished we'd never started this project……”

    Yeah Johnboy I kind of know that one.

    The "best" one for me was on the next to last inspection where they checked the block skirting, tie downs and water hook up. The inspector informed us that he couldn’t check off on it until an engineer inspected the concrete pad and signed off on it that it could hold the house!!!!

    Before I committed to buying the house the set-up crew had done an initial site survey. I had provided the plans and permit/inspections sign-off from when the pad had originally been poured. Supposedly the County would not issue the permits if the pad had not been approved.

    Keep in mind at this point the house was already set and the block laid along with the septic and water being hooked up and the home wired to the electrical riser! Not to mention that the house was completely paid off.

    The real kicker was when I went back over the estimate and realized I had been charged for the engineer inspection that was never done!!!! Basically they figured they could slide by without the inspection and just pocket the money. To say I was pissed would be a huge understatement

    Anyway the final walk thru is this morning and hopefully all goes well.


    .
    40FordDeluxe likes this.
    I've NEVER seen a car come from the factory that couldn't be improved.....

  15. #15
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    Good luck with the inspection, from a licensed building contractor. There are so many LOOP holes they get you to fall in.
    Charlie
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