Are you thinking about buying a home in the mountains? Good for you! We absolutely love mountain living, which is why we choose to live and work in the Western North Carolina mountains. The serenity, the scenic landscapes, and the endless outdoor activities are some of the biggest draws to living here. On the other hand, if this is your first time buying a home in the mountains, there are a couple things you’ll want to consider that can make mountain living a bit more difficult than city living:
1. Distance to Town
The peace and seclusion of living in a mountain property can be relaxing, but it also means committing to longer drives when you need to go out. If your job requires daily commuting, take a few trial runs during rush hour to see how long it might take to reach work. Also scope out the nearest necessities like gas stations, grocery stores, and hospitals. If you forget to fill the gas tank or pick up a loaf of bread on your way home, it may be quite the drive to go back out to fulfill forgotten errands.
The seclusion of a mountain home can also mean that cell service is spotty. You might need to install a landline if you find you have zero bars. Power outages are also a more common occurrence, which could knock out the Internet and landlines for a while. To help keep up communication, you might want to invest in a backup power generator to keep you communicating with the rest of the world, especially in emergencies.
3. Weather and Seasonal Issues
By living in a sloped area, weather can affect you more than you are used to. Heavy rains and snow falls could provoke mudslides. The rocks and trees that may get caught up in those falls could cause some serious damage to your home, which means home insurance could be pricey. That type of natural weather disturbance could also make driving impossible and keep you stranded at home until things calm down. Are forest fires common in your area? If so, you may want to take precautions in case they get too close to your home. In the winter, heavy snow or freezing conditions can make the roads quite dangerous and/or keep you snowed in for a few days. If your home is in a private community, the city snowplows might not come to help clear up or salt those private roads. When buying a rural property in the mountains, consider the weather risks that your area is most prone to and ask your real estate agent about preventative measures and/or emergency protocols during extreme weather conditions.
The diverse wildlife is both a pro and a con to mountain living. Watching a family of rabbits from your window or finding deer prints outside can be delightful. However, it’s important to know that there are risks to living so close to wild animals. Bears, Coyotes, foxes, and hawks are all predators. If you have a family pet like a dog that needs to spend time outdoors, you’ll want to consider where and when it would be safe for them to play outside. Would you need to build a covered area or would you have to supervise their time outdoors to help look out for those predators? If the area has black bears, they can get into your garbage cans, along with raccoons. Smaller animals like moles and/or bats can also be a huge nuisance if they find a way into your home.
While mountain living can require some extra considerations, we think it’s worth it! If you’re shopping for a mountain home, or thinking of building your mountain home in Western North Carolina, contact us for more information about what’s available.