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Thread: First Place

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    Default First Place

    Where did you first stay when you first arrived in Alaska to stay? Did you stay at a motel, hotel, rental apartment, new home?

    How long did it take you to get settled?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowchaser View Post
    Where did you first stay when you first arrived in Alaska to stay? Did you stay at a motel, hotel, rental apartment, new home?

    How long did it take you to get settled?
    We spent the first night in a co-workers house. Her husband picked me up and took us shopping. Next day we were off to the village.

    Now I would recommend someone to stay at the sockeye Inn if you need somewhere affordable for a few weeks.

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    We spent 2 weeks at the Microtel in Eagle River.

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    Well, we just did this a few months ago. We stayed in a furnished apartment (Highlands Apartments) for about 6 weeks until we found what we were looking for. First couple nights in town were at the Embassy Suites, but hotels get old fast. Also, we have two small kids so a hotel was not ideal for more than a few days. Take your time to be sure you are happy with where you settle. We were certain that we would end up living in a nice neighborhood in Anchorage (where I work) but ended up in a beautiful home/neighborhood in Wasilla and couldn't be happier. Happy house hunting!

    Scott

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    Quote Originally Posted by AaronP View Post
    We spent 2 weeks at the Microtel in Eagle River.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fin Chaser View Post
    Well, we just did this a few months ago. We stayed in a furnished apartment (Highlands Apartments) for about 6 weeks until we found what we were looking for. First couple nights in town were at the Embassy Suites, but hotels get old fast. Also, we have two small kids so a hotel was not ideal for more than a few days. Take your time to be sure you are happy with where you settle. We were certain that we would end up living in a nice neighborhood in Anchorage (where I work) but ended up in a beautiful home/neighborhood in Wasilla and couldn't be happier. Happy house hunting!

    Scott
    may I ask what these places cost per week? We always look for a place at Christmas time and possibly in summer. Hard to find safe short term rentL places.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowchaser View Post
    Where did you first stay when you first arrived in Alaska to stay? Did you stay at a motel, hotel, rental apartment, new home?

    How long did it take you to get settled?
    US Army barracks Ft. Wainwright. Settled in right away.

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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    The back of my truck worked for a summer before I acquired real accommodation (an old slide in camper).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yukon Cornelius View Post
    may I ask what these places cost per week? We always look for a place at Christmas time and possibly in summer. Hard to find safe short term rentL places.
    My apt was rented for two months at just shy of $3k per month. Most apartments do not operate on a weekly basis, though there are likely a few corporate apartments out there that do.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    We stayed with friends for about a week until we found a duplex to rent. The rental market is tight, but people are always moving so apartments and housing are always coming on the market to rent. If you arrive in the middle of the month you should be able to find something to rent by the first of the following month.

    I'd advise against buying a house right off the bat because you should get a feel for town and neighborhoods before plunking down on a house. Also if a house has been on the market for any amount of time, odds are it's either got issues and/or over priced. Good houses are literally being sold the day they list.
    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.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    We stayed with friends for about a week until we found a duplex to rent. The rental market is tight, but people are always moving so apartments and housing are always coming on the market to rent. If you arrive in the middle of the month you should be able to find something to rent by the first of the following month.

    I'd advise against buying a house right off the bat because you should get a feel for town and neighborhoods before plunking down on a house. Also if a house has been on the market for any amount of time, odds are it's either got issues and/or over priced. Good houses are literally being sold the day they list.
    I learned to take time and look around. Many years ago, we rented a place where when it rained the water would pour through
    the foundation like little waterfalls (flat stone wall) and run out the back door. There were also snakes that would stick their heads out from the basement wall while we were doing laundry. We moved in during the winter while there was snow and no snakes. Now I have a much better
    idea what to watch out for when buying a place. Although things will be different in AK. Now I would be looking for something with more sun
    exposure. South facing mountains or hills. Along with other things. That would be another good thread. What to look for or look out for when buying in AK.

  11. #11
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowchaser View Post
    Where did you first stay when you first arrived in Alaska to stay? Did you stay at a motel, hotel, rental apartment, new home?

    How long did it take you to get settled?
    Drove up with my kit in dead of winter. Saw -63 in the dog yard that winter. Had a dog handling gig for room and board that winter, and settled into a cabin in the woods thereafter.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
    #Resist

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowchaser View Post
    I learned to take time and look around. Many years ago, we rented a place where when it rained the water would pour through
    the foundation like little waterfalls (flat stone wall) and run out the back door. There were also snakes that would stick their heads out from the basement wall while we were doing laundry. We moved in during the winter while there was snow and no snakes. Now I have a much better
    idea what to watch out for when buying a place. Although things will be different in AK. Now I would be looking for something with more sun
    exposure. South facing mountains or hills. Along with other things. That would be another good thread. What to look for or look out for when buying in AK.
    Where did you live in Alaska that had snakes?
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
    #Resist

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I stayed in the Providence maternity ward. At only a few hours old, my credentials for renting an apartment were a little sparse.

    OK, not helpful, I know...

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    Where did you live in Alaska that had snakes?
    No, that was in Pa. and it happened about 20 years ago.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Things I've learned to look out in regards to homes in AK is while South facing is good, make sure there isn't a mountain range or neighbors trees to the South or you could be in the shade for a couple months during the darkest part of the winter. The sun gets very low on the horizon from Thanksgiving through mid January. Many houses I thought would be sunny in the dead of winter were shaded by neighbors trees.

    When that winters worth of snow finally melts, that water has to go somewhere and that somewhere could be your basement or your garage depending on how the lot and driveway slope. Drains in driveways can be blocked by snow or ice, so keep them clear all winter long. We can get rain in January and if you have a driveway that slopes towards your garage and your driveway drain is covered with snow, that water will end up in your garage. I would avoid a steep driveway as we get ice from either a thaw followed by a freeze, or freezing rain, and you don't want your vehicle or you sliding up or down the driveway.

    I don't recall exactly when it happened, maybe late 90's but homes went from 2X4 exterior wall construction to 2X6 which is a significant increase in insulation in the walls, and the insulation in the attics also increased. Hence newer homes can be quite a bit less expensive to heat. Also there was a building boom in the early 80's and having owned one of those houses for 17 years I can say they really slapped them together and you can expect to have to do quite a bit of remodeling if the previous owner(s) haven't kept it up. Even if you're a DIY kinda guy, you can drop a lot of money into an older home doing upgrades and repairs. We've basically remodeled the entire inside of our house, replaced the windows, doors, garage door, roof and now are needing to replace the decks as they're starting to rot out.

    Ideally you should visit areas in the dead of winter and breakup to see what issues the area has with sun, snow and spring melt. A good honest realtor that has been working here for decades and knows all the neighborhoods can give you that information, but my experience has been such realtors are few and far between and many if not most are just there to collect their sales commission.
    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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    Stayed a few days at the Grand View. Internet wasn't quite what we needed so switched to the Best Western on Lake Lucille while finding a house to rent. Ended up in the last great wilderness living in a townhome more modern than the house we sold down south! Great area though. Found one of the best Realtors for newbies helping settle in up here. I used to be a Realtor so it's not easy to impress me on that issue. She kept us out of the places you'd see on the AST show or what you read about in the news.

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