I Did It!

My river.

Friday, June 21, 2019

It’s been almost a month since I first saw that little piece of property overlooking the river, and I’ve been thinking about it every day. Every time I compare the positives with the negatives, the positives win. Every. Single. Time.

Negatives: It’s on a busy highway. It’s not as busy as an urban highway or a freeway by any means, but for a rural highway, it’s pretty busy. The two neighbors are pretty close, as well–one on the southern property line, and another directly across the road. The lot is long and narrow, so although it’s almost an acre and a half, the roadside half is probably not more than 100′ wide. And, although rumor has it there’s river access somewhere, I still haven’t found it. Which means half of the lot still isn’t accessible. And lastly, that unsafe zipline.

Positives: It’s affordable waterfront and well within my budget. At an acre and a half, it exceeds my minimum lot size. It’s heavily forested, so while I might have to hear traffic, I would’t necessarily have to see it. And, the speed limit is a relatively low 40 mph, rather than 55 or 60. It’s an easy hour and fifteen minute drive from my home and accessible year round, so I don’t have to worry about not being able to reach it in the winter. The temperate Olympic Peninsula rainforest climate also means the temperature won’t fluctuate much between winter and summer. Bordering thousands of acres of public trust land and logging company land makes it a convenient gateway for hiking opportunities. I would have only two neighbors, and they would help keep an eye on the place when I’m not there. Lastly, it’s within a few minutes driving distance of the Pacific Ocean. While I may never own ocean-front property, I could be close.

Mostly, though, I had fallen in love with the property. I felt a sense of peace when I was there. And although my savings for a downpayment had been depleted by my recent automotive mishaps, my budget had not. I had spent the previous days going over my finances again and again. I could afford the monthly payments. After all, one of the reasons I had chosen to live in my travel trailer instead of renting a place is so I could use the difference to purchase recreational property. That hadn’t changed.

The only thing I lacked was a downpayment. RV had said he was looking for $4,000 down. I had only $1,000. He had said he really wanted to sell the property to me because he liked my plans for it. He wanted to see me own it. Well, what did I have to lose? I called him up and made an appointment for Friday after work.

I laid it out. My downpayment had gone to fix my truck, and when it broke down again–which, incidentally, was the same day we were supposed to meet the first time, causing me to have to reschedule–I had to buy another truck. As proof, Big Red sat in his driveway, the temporary license showing prominently in the rear window, and blank frames from the dealership on the front and back. Pie. Because everybody needs a piece of pie.I also showed him a recent copy of my credit report, my payment history from my house, and a copy of my employment contract. He could see I was reliable and good for the money.

He carefully considered everything and asked me what kind of payment I was thinking about. I told him seven years. I would have it paid off by the time I retired.

He accepted my offer.