I totally agree with you gentlemen on looking into the neighbor's before jumping to close to purchase. Being in Oregon right now here's how I've been attacking the situation:
1) find appropriate properties for sale in my size and price range.
2) get all of the ariel and street view mapping possible for the property and surrounding neighbors
3) research crime rate, taxes and all the basic must do when moving into a new area
4) contact Mike Otto to inspect the property and have soil sampled
5) if they pass steps 1 through 4, I'm on a plane and in a rental car to check things out. I'm trying to line up at least two properties before I get on a plane.
I will definitely have to look into Sabine County. I like that price point! Running into a lot of properties with existing pawns but they all look like they have been neglected for some time. I'm waiting to hear back from Mike Otto regarding cost difference is to rehabilitate an existing hole in the ground or dig a proper pond. Thank you all for your continued support and information in are scary but exhilarating experience of moving and being a pond owner!
Crime is a biggie. One promising place we looked was in a sketchy neighborhood, but we figured we could tolerate it...until we found out that three women had been murdered there the last five years.
Also, sometimes people have fished in neighborhood ponds for years, so they figure they'll keep doing it when you own the property. This can lead to serious issues, another reason why we chose to build a pond rather than buy an existing one.
Dear Lord, murder! Beyond looking online at crime statistics, I also contact local and county law enforcement agencies for current crime statistics. I will fly down and spend at least 3 or 4 days in an area before getting serious about making an offer.
Trespassers, poachers, stunted bass planters, dangerous critters and all other undesirable guests....BEWARE! I started another thread in the construction forum regarding outbuildings and fencing. My fencing will be a force to be reckoned with, for sure. A tall and strong woven wire fence with deep-set posts and a horse hotwire on top and bottom for digging..... decorated with appropriate yet friendly signage. Something like, "I don't pee in your pool so don't fish in my pond.". Our pack of Siberian huskies will have full run of the property so that will be another deterrent. They're the sweetest dogs ever but if you cross Mama and Papa, watch out!
I would much rather build my own pond to ensure I get everything that we want. You never know though, I could find the perfect property with a Pondtacular body of water already on it. We plan to make friends of our neighbors and the community. If there were any discrepancies over pond ownership, I'm sure the kids fishing program we plan to implement would help clear that up. If not, I can always show up at the trespassers house every night for dinner, since it would seem like we share everything!
What's that boy? Unauthorize Pond access you say!
Don't let the size of Stewie fool you, he's the pack leader
As long as your placing signs, since you'll be in Texas you might as well put one of these up that helps protect Texas landowners. Pretty much all of our properties can fit under this relatively new law.
Screw tail bulldog, love it! I did some poking around and it varies on acreage between counties for Ag exemptions. It all depends on what type of property we settle on. If there's enough Timber or pasture for cattle.... although Timber does require less poop extraction.
Thank you for the heads up on the Texas signage! Definitely put on the list of things to do. Contacted Lamar Electric Co-op yesterday regarding one of the properties were interested in. It turns out there would be a 900 foot shot of roadside that I would need to pay to install poles and hang wire. Then they would graciously give me 300 feet of aerial into the property! scratch that property off the list
If it turns out we're not able to get an Ag exemption, that's ok. I'm sure we'll be able to get a little relief from the fishing and horse programs.
It sounds like timber in Texas is becoming like marijuana in Oregon. Everyone's growing it and it's almost dirt cheap.
UShawn, as far as I know, the timber exemption is the same as the old ag exemption. We had to update our info, but nothing here changed. Leased pastures and hay production are what we use. There is also a wildlife exemption, and I think that's what Dave Davidson uses. Maybe he can chime in about that, and what the requirements are.
The actual tax benefits aren't a game changer, but if you have one of the exemptions, several of the places we shop at don't charge taxes on farm or ranch materials, and that can add up to a big savings. In the past, the big orange box store would accept it, and it really added up on building materials. TSC is the best at it. If I buy 400# of goat and chicken food, and a pair of boots, I pay taxes on the boots only. Also, they send you an nice itemized list of all your exempt purchases for the year.
Last edited by FireIsHot; 02/18/2004:43 PM. Reason: ADD
"Yes ma'am. That 200 lbs of goat chow, 100 lbs of chicken feed and 25 gallons of Milestone...and yes, the boots are for my horse. Put it on my Visa."
I'm interested to hear back on the wildlife exemption and guidelines. They run a lot of hay on my family farm but I never got involved in that operation. I think I'd much rather have steaks first, then maybe hay.
Get a timber exemption first , minimum of 10 acres, not hard to get and the write offs are great, much easier than ag . Wildlife exemption only after timber exemption is at least a year old. No tax benefits other than property taxes
All said, you want an Agricultural/Timber Registration exemption Period! Made a big difference on my property/school board taxes, not to mention sales tax reductions. We have two different ones. One was done by the tax assuror. We had and do have timber but because we bought two different properties at different times and even though we bought adjacent properties and then tying it to one, it seems that the tax man wanted for us to use our commercial bee business over timber at the new place. We had a legitimate timber acreage in the newer purchase. It all reminds me of the song TAX MAN by the Beatles
Last edited by TGW1; 02/19/2008:41 AM.
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
I use the wildlife exemption. When it became available, I promptly sold the cows and quit worrying about keeping up my fences. I have to file a yearly report of my activities. There are 7 things that I can do but only have to select and report on 3. I provide a lot of pictures and do about a 4+ page report including pics. I like to provide pics of grandkids fishing and wandering around. Actually, I question whether they even read it.
When it first became available, you could only use wildlife if you were coming from grazing(cows, sheep, goats, etc.). Check with the County about this part. The Counties don't like this one because they are more attuned to ranching and they really enjoy collecting taxes.
The ones I do/report are:
1. Provide cover for small animals. Those are brush piles from cutting firewood.
2. Provide water for wildlife. My ponds and occasional water holes when it actually rains. I take pics of ponds and print them.
3. Do a census of deer sightings. I count print pics from game cams. This year has been challenging due to a massive acorn drop when deer ignored corn feeders. But, I can do that from tracks. I actually say in the report that I can't tell one deer track from another.
Kill predators is also available. I don't do that because I'm not mad at coyotes. Heck, they have to eat and, I believe that they take 80+ of the fawns born. That's just Mama Nature at work and she can be a mean bitch.
Another is provide supplemental feed for wildlife. Plant some wheat or maybe a protein feeder or 2. I have heard that corn feeders for deer hunting don't work. I'll probably plant a couple of wheat patches this year if it rains enough to get a crop. But I do provide pics of us on tractors plowing and/or working the land. I say in the report that due to either drought or beetles, the crop was a failure but I tried. I take pics of wheat seed that I plant(or not). I buy some bags of protein feed and take pics of the bags. It's expensive but without an exemption of some kind, taxes would be ruinous.
BTW, we have a lot of hogs and they are an invasive species. Not sure what their status is regarding wildlife exemptions but I include pics of hogs killed.
There are a couple more.
Last edited by Dave Davidson1; 02/20/2007:04 AM.
It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.
Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.
Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP