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Talk to you later 09.09.2020 14:25

Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
https://i.ibb.co/9qXxs8k/Wood.jpg

If I buy a small house, I will be capable of doing small DIY jobs but I am trying to understand the consequences of owning a house in the mountains (will have road access). Take this house as an example-

1) How does one maintain the wood? You just apply the correct coating every summer? How long can well maintained wood last before losing it's structural strength? Google says maybe150 years? I want it to last my lifetime only. I am in my 40s currently. My remaining life could be anything from 1 second to 60 years.

2) I assume one of the weakest failure point of a house like above would be the roof? How do I maintain it? Repair any damage ASAP before it gets bigger?

3) In case of roof failure, what would a new roof cost for a small house like above?

4) Insurance!!! How much would monthly insurance for a 300k house be roughly? Are acts of nature like landslide, rockfall etc covered?

Quote:

AXA Protect yourself from financial building risks with AXA's various insurance products. Whether fire, water, earthquake, or burglary: Put together your own optimal building insurance with AXA's modules.
Some negative points of living away from larger towns/cities-

a. Distance to Town
b. Communication
c. Weather and Seasonal Issues
d. Wildlife

st2lemans 09.09.2020 14:57

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Talk to you later (Post 3215731)
4) Insurance!!! How much would monthly insurance for a 300k house be roughly?

The insurance depends on the size, not the purchase price.

We paid 90k, insured value based on volume is 140k or so, around CHF 200/year for insurance.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Talk to you later (Post 3215731)
Are acts of nature like landslide, rockfall etc covered?

Depends on what you ask for.

Tom

bowlie 09.09.2020 15:17

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Talk to you later (Post 3215731)

Some negative points of living away from larger towns/cities-

a. Distance to Town
b. Communication
c. Weather and Seasonal Issues
d. Wildlife

Those are also positive points ...

smileygreebins 09.09.2020 15:46

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Here's our checklist for every autumn, again granted that we're at 1100m.
  1. Clear out all water drains and gutters
  2. Restain all timber garden furniture and cover them up
  3. Cover up the concrete garden fireplaces
  4. Tie up all the younger trees where snow weight could snap their branches
  5. Service all the garden tools
  6. Put mulch layers over all the vegetable beds
  7. Move all the potted plants into the greenhouse with its heater on lowest setting and winter's worth of water in the tank that we can access easily
  8. Purchase and store close to the house, a winter's worth of firewood
  9. Drain the motorbikes of fuel and store them on cardboard rather than just the concrete garage floors
  10. Regrout any gaps in the stone stairs/pavers
  11. Relocate a large compost bin for winter foodscraps close to the house
  12. Service the snow clearing machine and store it at the front of the garage doors
  13. Move all our snow clearing shovels, gloves, hats etc right by all doors
  14. Check the heaters and extension cords that get used in the cars
  15. Bleed the garden hoses and let them dry out before storage in the shed
  16. Ensure every painted exterior surface of the house is repaired
  17. Ensure pantry has all the basics for at least a couple of weeks (bad storms resulting in fallen trees have blocked our road historically for days)
  18. Check the garden shed roof and house roof shingles are all in good order
  19. Relocate the BBQ's under the eaves for easy access (love a winter grill!)

Very simply, we might not see our grass or driveway clear of snow for 4-5 months. And its a chore to have to keep clearing access routes through the snow, so we stock up on supplies, keep everything else required close to the exterior doors, or super easy to unload from the car to the house, and then hunker down!

Extreme cold is an enemy of any part of your exterior house that is not in good repair - and you don't want to be trying to patch roofs or fix anything outside in minus degrees with a biting wind!

We had our timber house painted 7 years ago, with an assurance it would last for 10 years before needing to be redone. We've just had to strip back to bare timber and repaint all of the shutters, and really we should have redone them last year - they were showing signs of weather wear much earlier than expected. We are also well past repainting the cladded walls - they are looking very thirsty. And we're in the process of fixing all the rendered concrete walls - they are cracking badly. So either we didn't get the best contractor or paint type with the promise of 10 years, or our weather conditions have been more extreme than usual.....Our slate clad roof however has been on for 45 years and is still looking good, and all our copper drainpipes and copper chimney stack & hood are holding up perfectly. We painted the garden shed ourselves 8 years ago, and it still looks perfect. And happily, our bathroom pipes no longer freeze up every winter, after we went crazy with quadruple insulation in those walls!

smileygreebins 09.09.2020 16:07

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bowlie (Post 3215759)
Those are also positive points ...

Indeed. Very real peace. And so many more stars at night.

We watch the deer grazing alone the treeline and wake up with bird song and get little frogs from time to time, plus the cats get plenty of mice to chase! The foxes are lovely, but they give no mercy if I forget to lock up the garbage bags or leave the BBQ grease trap uncleaned... There is also some kind of rodent that is notorious for eating at electrical cables in cars - maybe another EF'er can elaborate on this, but we finally had this happen to our truck this year which was a bugger.

The air is different, and so very clean.

The local water (here anyway) is better than anything Evian could ever produce.

Everyday is like being on holiday.

People smile more, and always say hello to each other.

We've had no significant issues with communication - either with the locals, the authorities, or reliability of phone and internet (in fact the internet coverage here is better than what I had in London!)

For sure it took me a while to get used to Swiss mountain ways, but I don't miss city life one jot. The weather can change on the turn of a dime BUT depending on where you're planning to live, there's something about living at altitude, and being above the fog line, or above the clouds, or above the town fireworks or level with the lightening that makes the occasional mountain storms and the work associated with snowfall worth it!

And sitting in an armchair, made out of snow, drinking a cold beer in warm sunshine....that's just a hoot!

AbFab 09.09.2020 18:21

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Be aware that "living in lower mountains" (assumed about 1200 metres) means that you will have snow on the ground from November to late April. Summers, though beautiful are short and nights can be cold - so no sitting out on balmy evenings.

A great place for a holiday, but for me not an ideal place to live...

bowlie 09.09.2020 18:34

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AbFab (Post 3215850)
Be aware that "living in lower mountains" (assumed about 1200 metres) means that you will have snow on the ground from November to late April. Summers, though beautiful are short and nights can be cold - so no sitting out on balmy evenings.

A great place for a holiday, but for me not an ideal place to live...

Well there is the (solar powered) hot tub ...

3Wishes 09.09.2020 19:16

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by smileygreebins (Post 3215781)
...There is also some kind of rodent that is notorious for eating at electrical cables in cars - maybe another EF'er can elaborate on this, but we finally had this happen to our truck this year which was a bugger.

It's a common problem mentioned on EF. The little beasts are called martens, apparently:
https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...ating-car.html

BasP72 09.09.2020 19:34

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 3Wishes (Post 3215867)
It's a common problem mentioned on EF. The little beasts are called martens, apparently:
https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...ating-car.html

And if you have teilcasco damage from these animals is typically covered.

amogles 09.09.2020 20:30

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 3Wishes (Post 3215867)
It's a common problem mentioned on EF. The little beasts are called martens, apparently:
https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...ating-car.html

Shouldn't a garage suffice to keep them away?

st2lemans 09.09.2020 20:42

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by amogles (Post 3215892)
Shouldn't a garage suffice to keep them away?

Only if underground and on the neighbor's property.

Tom

Talk to you later 09.09.2020 23:48

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AbFab (Post 3215850)
Be aware that "living in lower mountains" (assumed about 1200 metres) means that you will have snow on the ground from November to late April. Summers, though beautiful are short and nights can be cold - so no sitting out on balmy evenings.

A great place for a holiday, but for me not an ideal place to live...


The areas I am interested in are situated between 1300m and 1600m. I think I will survive as long as the property survives :msnblush:

BasP72 09.09.2020 23:56

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Did you check your area on meteoblue.com ? There you can get climate information... i dont know where you have in mind but I think the Jura is the coldest with strong winds high in the mountains. Check your desired location to make sure it doesnt get too bad in winter.

Or reserve 80k and get a second place on Lanzarote...

Talk to you later 10.09.2020 00:05

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BasP72 (Post 3215950)
Did you check your area on meteoblue.com ? There you can get climate information... i dont know where you have in mind but I think the Jura is the coldest with strong winds high in the mountains. Check your desired location to make sure it doesnt get too bad in winter.

Or reserve 80k and get a second place on Lanzarote...


Not Jura but Valais region.





https://i.ibb.co/wNkt5cf/temp.jpg

smileygreebins 10.09.2020 03:51

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 3Wishes (Post 3215867)
It's a common problem mentioned on EF. The little beasts are called martens, apparently:
https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...ating-car.html

Our Swiss friends tell us that the critters don't like the smell of dogs, and stay away from driveways/cars where dogs have been present.

Could be an urban myth. However it is an odd coincidence that we've had zero issues for 7 years whilst our doggie was alive, and then, 6 months after her passing, the martens made a dinner party with the electrics in our truck...

Talk to you later 10.09.2020 09:19

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Damit!!! This wire chewing animal thing sounds like lot of trouble!!!! Do they like taste of Suzuki Jimny or Fiat Panda Cross 4x4 cables too?
What if they eat the brake lines? :o Will getting garden cats help?

Talk to you later 10.09.2020 09:36

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bowlie (Post 3215759)
Those are also positive points ...


For me yes and no. I got that list from online research. Let me break them down from my point of view


a. Distance to Town- Positive overall, unless some major emergency.
b. Communication- Neutral, I need good internet. If I have that, then I don't care.
c. Weather and Seasonal Issues- Positive, it is what it is and part of living in beautiful nature.
d. Wildlife- Positive, as long as it is not a bear that comes daily to my garden :)

st2lemans 10.09.2020 09:43

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Talk to you later (Post 3215982)
Will getting garden cats help?

Yes.

They will also take care of rats and snakes.

Tom

smileygreebins 10.09.2020 10:59

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Talk to you later (Post 3215982)
Damit!!! This wire chewing animal thing sounds like lot of trouble!!!! Do they like taste of Suzuki Jimny or Fiat Panda Cross 4x4 cables too?
What if they eat the brake lines? :o Will getting garden cats help?

After fixing the martens leftovers, our local garage chaps advised us to keep an oily rag stuffed in a nook of the engine bay. The critters don't like those apparently, and so far, all has been good.... There is also the option to put additional sheathing on the cable lines....

Talk to you later 11.09.2020 20:12

Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions
 
The power of nature is another thing to think about!




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