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Thread: Planning for 2015 Move

  1. #1
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    Default Planning for 2015 Move

    Hello Everyone..

    Well we have decided to escape the hustle of the lower 48 and move north. Not going into this completely blind as drove for Atlas tours in 87/88 from Skagway to Anchorage and loved the area. We are thinking the Palmer Wasilla outer areas. not more then 30 miles out. Cant get the wife to far from Wal Mart.

    So the plan is a larger parcel that will accommodate 3-4 homes for family as my kids are coming also and we would like to live as a group, We want to grow or own vegetables, chickens,pigs. We are use to doing this so not problem there just need to get use to doing in a new area.

    What i do not know is land information for the area,
    1. Average well depths ?
    2. Requirements for septic ?
    3. Is i worth buying someplace with Natural Gas?
    4. Is it cost effective to do a pole barn house? If not what is most cost effective?

    After all that i need to find someone selling a nice parcel that will take good terms till we can build an refi to pay it off. Our move could be sooner if things fall into place

    Thanks for All your help and information

  2. #2
    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    Sorry to be the one to inform you, but the hustle from down there has arrived up here! The Alaska you think you remember from 1987/88 no longer exists. Do yourself a favor before you start selling off what you have "down there" and fly up here and look around a little.

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    Yea i am sure it has changed, and yes will come up prior. We moved to north Idaho 15 years ago and its been great but its not what it use to be either. I grew up west of Seattle and going over there now is like a different country!!!

  4. #4

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    If your wealthy "AND" can lock-in employment netting $85,000.00+ per year, your plan is workable. Note: Wasilla has massive "Cloverleaf" Overpasses. It is bumper to bumper four lane Hwy. Wasilla to Los Anchorage. Suggest you consider Russia or South-East Alaska, as South Centeral Alaska "SUCKS".

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    Well thats good to know, delta junction and Fairbanks may not be such a bad choice, As for work i drive truck so job should be ok to find as well as some assisted living for special needs. Plan on bringing my Bobcat T190 also its a nice little make some extra cash machine.

  6. #6
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    Well we have decided to escape the hustle of the lower 48 and move north.
    There is plenty of hustle and bustle anywhere there is a road system. As we were less affected by the recession than the lower 48, things are still clicking right along up here.

    I like Fairbanks, but I gotta tell you: When you get there it is like someone took a chunk of any big town in the lower 48 and dropped it in the middle of nowhere. They have big highways (that go nowhere) and all the box stores and big city crime and diversity. The good thing is that you can get out to the middle of nowhere (assuming that is what you want) pretty easy and Fairbanks still has a genuine Alaska flavor about it (unlike Anchorage).

    Delta might be nicer for you.




    Not going into this completely blind as drove for Atlas tours in 87/88 from Skagway to Anchorage and loved the area. We are thinking the Palmer Wasilla outer areas. not more then 30 miles out. Cant get the wife to far from Wal Mart.
    I lived hear from 1979 until 1989. Then I moved back here in 2003. I had to drink for about a year to get over the disappointment of how "normal" Alaska has gotten. The Alaska you knew is long gone. But since Wasilla has a Wal Mart, at least you will have no reason whatsoever to visit Anchorage.


    So the plan is a larger parcel that will accommodate 3-4 homes for family as my kids are coming also and we would like to live as a group, We want to grow or own vegetables, chickens,pigs. We are use to doing this so not problem there just need to get use to doing in a new area.
    Stay away from the Muni of Anchorage, they are anti-livestock. The Valley isn't a terrible idea cause we have less zoning and regulations on that sort of stuff, but because we have roads/fire trucks/hospitals be ready to pay big bucks for the parcel you need if it is the Valley you want. Check out the Alaska MLS and research some property prices. It is a good place to start.

    What i do not know is land information for the area,
    1. Average well depths ?
    2. Requirements for septic ?
    3. Is i worth buying someplace with Natural Gas?
    4. Is it cost effective to do a pole barn house? If not what is most cost effective?
    1) Total depends on the water table where you choose to buy. Some places 110-160 feet is normal and other places less than half that. Other places are full of bedrock, wells can have methane, sulfur, iron.... It's a good idea to find a parcel you like and then start canvasing the neighbors for info about their wells. Also, call around to get the price per foot for putting in a well. Make sure you are sitting down when you talk to them ha,ha.

    2) Standard DEC rules for septic in the Valley.
    3) Natural gas is cheap but buying a place that has it nearby is not. It is only available in the most populated areas. I personally recommend having more than one heat source, but the worst thing about gas is that you pretty much have to be very wealthy or have neighbors in order to have it.
    4) Yes, but traditional wood framed homes are the most cost effective of all. Panelized homes are starting to appear and have high material costs but low labor costs so it may equal out to traditional wood framed prices. That would be the closest two to "cost-effective".

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    Thank you so much for the information, I have been looking more north and east. I used google earth on wasilla and was like WOW what the hell happened. Delta looks nice also glennallen and tok. I remember from my tour days a house on a back road on way to UNAF there was a home built on perma-frost that did not do so well lol, I will have to make sure to avoid that problem.

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    Fed-up, hey when you are looking on Google Earth,you see those extensive trail systems around Glennallen? Now imagine hunting season and anytime there is enough snow to ride the snowgo. Glennallen's population increases by like 500% during those times with the roadside pull outs and gravel pits having RV villages spring up in them. They are close enough to the road that all us Valley Trash and city slicker Anchoragite weekend warriors will be your unwelcome neighbors, especially ruining the time of year you specifically moved out there to enjoy.

    If you are considering moving out that way, try looking at Kenny Lake (it's off a spur road that noone goes on unless they are going to Chitna) and is an agricultural community. The hunting out there is kinda tough cause the Atnea own most of the land but there is a nice farm charm to the place. Delta is a nice farm town, too. Some of the communities around Fairbanks like Fox, Chena, and Salsha are pretty nice and out-of-the-way but unless you like living around left-wingers stay out of Ester. Up the road from here is Trapper Creek, Talkeetna (expensive but authentic), etc. A lot of this might depend on where you and your kids expect to work. Work tends to be closer to settlements.

    Have fun planning your move but don't take too long to do it!

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    Thanks this is the kind of information i was looking for it gets me headed in the right direction. As for work we are looking into what the state pays and its requirments for a assisted living/ reshab type home as we do that here, My daughter is looking to work medical office or home health, son is going for his certs in welding and i drive truck and run heavy equipment. I have some equipment i will bring along to do side work

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Just thoroughly look into the cost of living before taking the plunge. You'll likely find that everything is quite a bit more expensive up here, with a shorter growing season and higher fuel bills to heat your homestead. The Matsu has really become the Northern most sub-burb of Anchorage.

    The reality of a more back to basics life style in Alaska is those people pulling it off fall into three catagories, those that take a vow of poverty, those that are independently wealthy, and those that are on wellfare. Many of those starting in the first group find themselves in the third group. The farther North and out you head, the shorter the growing season and the more expensive it is to heat your house.

    Assisted living homes can be quite profitable, but definately look into the requirements. As I recall from what my buddy said you'll need to have 3 months cash in the bank for all the expenses of running the home, not to mention all the other requirements, certs etc.

    One thing I learned a few years after moving to Alaska is if you are unhappy with your life in your location, you'll likely be just as unhappy in Alaska, perhaps more so. It can be a very tough place to live, and also very rewarding.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

  11. #11
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Default Planning for 2015 Move

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post

    One thing I learned a few years after moving to Alaska is if you are unhappy with your life in your location, you'll likely be just as unhappy in Alaska, perhaps more so. It can be a very tough place to live, and also very rewarding.
    I strongly agree with this. AK is expensive and I find that I spend more time working to maintain the same lifestyle I had in the south. More time working equals less time to enjoy the outdoors. There is also a much shorter season for doing house and yard maintenance. Replacing windows, building sheds, and all matters of similar work can really only be done for a few months each year and if you need dry weather then you are even more time restricted. In Palmer I think we had a total of 5 weekend days that were sunny this summer. Most folks I run into living remote at all work 2x2 schedules on the slope and have extraordinarily hardy spouses.

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    Thats more to think about for sure. We for sure are not wealthy and not on welfare so i guess in the middle, Not really into keeping up with the jones just having a happy home and family and i had hoped for more time to spend together which seems to not be so up there anymore.

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    A smart guy once said to me that in Alaska buildings are always going up or coming down. It's more work to live here (and I say this as someone who was on a farm back east). For a lot of us it's worth it, but you really do have to be realistic about the tradeoffs and if what you're looking for is more time to do <xxx>, you might want to work that one through to make sure that you will have more time if you move here. Here in the interior, we're right now looking at the end of the season for anything that needs the ground not to be frozen.

    The other thing is that you need to want to move to Alaska, not away from where you are. Really think this one through.

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    Quote mlshore "The other thing is that you need to want to move to Alaska, not away from where you are. Really think this one through."

    +1 on this. My best friend lived in a cabin on the Kuskokwim out McGrath way from 96 - 99, helped to have Friends and Neighbors check up on him to be sure he was prepared, especially for his first winter out there. I wanted to do it, our friend even had a cabin I could have used but I busted up my neck/back and couldn't go. They've moved to Kenai now that their kids are grown up.

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    I have wanted to move back there since 88 lol, but with small children and things the wife was not so into that idea. Now that the youngest is 20 and brought up thats where he would like to live we decided as a family it would be a great thing, call it a adventure or what ever you will. I have the employment skills i can work most anywhere. I do think after seeing the sun mentioned on weekends this summer we may try closer to delta. I am tired of the 90+ we have had for weeks here. I figure if its meant to be it will happen if not the good lord will put up enough road blocks. I do have to wonder if some of the information is on the basis of ( OH god not another one moving here) We do that a lot in Idaho when the californians come

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    I just tried to condense what I've experienced, observed and learned in the 15 years I've been up here with both great joys and some frustration along the way, but no regrets. All I can say is thoroughly research both the cost of living and realistic employment opportunities. Asside from lower cost for bare land, everything else in a remote location is more expensive and harder to obtain.

    You might be able to work most anywhere, but that doesn't mean there are jobs most anywhere. Plan at least for the first couple years up here to locate yourself within commute distance of the job hubs in the state: Anchorage, Fairbanks, Mat-su.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    Thanks yes its nice to be older and wiser now and know i am not invincible lol. Wife has stipulations lol MUST have walmart no more then a hour must have some form of medic around volunteer fire works for her. So we are not going OUT in the bush more like the woods

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