Our Population has Dropped Again

Thank goodness the wind finally subsided which offered us an absolutely stunning mid-November day. While out this afternoon, I glanced at the outdoor temps and found it near the fifty degree mark. Let’s hope this warming trend continues on thru Thanksgiving weekend.

Early this morning I dropped off a little gift to one of my dear ones and stayed for a short chat before I had to be back at office for an 8:00 am appointment. It was good seeing her, and happy to find her looking fit as a fiddle in both mind and body. I did share a little information on a property I’ve been circling because it’s been one that’s caught my eye for a very many years.

After I finished up with my morning appointment at office, I changed my clothes and headed out to get some pre-winter maintenance done, and of course what we sometimes think to be small jobs, end up being much larger. Oh well, I got it finished and that’s all that mattered. Oh, I did forget to mention something else when talking about winterizing some days ago, and that being the necessary use of rodent poisoning in any garages or storage sheds you may have which allow for entry of rodents because I learned the hard way some years ago after finding mice had made a nest under the hood of my car one winter, along with having also chewed wires in my motorized gardening equipment. God loves all creatures great and small, but when they decide to start chewing wires and making nests where they shouldn’t, that’s when the rodent blocks get distributed in areas where neither cats nor dogs can reach.

By the time Noon arrived, I was back at office working on the last of the four closing files which are scheduled to close this coming week. For whatever reason, those four have caused extra struggles, and mostly because two sets of them are tied with other closings which calls for all the more care in timing. Thus far, I’m remaining confident they’ll close without any last-minute hitches.

While outdoors today, I was so much captivated by how the low-hanging sun was creating spectacular views, I was scolding myself for not having taken my camera with me. In spite of our days being short, some of the daylight hours can offer photogenic shots worthy of a calendar. What I also enjoy, is getting better views of buildings and homes in our area after all the trees have lost their leaves. I find it quite amazing how leafed-out trees can almost completely conceal structures, and especially when there are a great deal of them nearby.

I had every intention to do some Fall tree planting this year, but my workload has kept me from doing it, and when seeing a landscaping company completely re-doing the outside of the Downtown office of First Citizens Bank, I shamed myself even more. As we all know, nearly all tree and shrub planting is best done around this time of year because it allows for them to rest and get acclimated to their new “digs” before Spring arrives.

While reviewing the recent homes that’ve gone under contract, I happened to notice that Robin Anderson’s home out in the country club addition, now has an accepted offer on it which causes me to wonder is she’s retiring from her position as head of the Chamber of Commerce here in Mason City. She’s held that position for so long, I actually can’t remember who was there before her.

Due to the number of hours I was at office this afternoon, I was reminded how busy that tavern is which is two doors down. There sure is a great deal of coming and going out of it which makes me wonder if that’s one of the “go to” places to patronize if you’re into drinking and playing pool. I must confess I’ve never learned how to play pool, and likely never will because I’d rather be out doing something constructive rather than trapped in a dimly-lit bar while circling a pool table. Oh well, everybody’s got their own thing and that’s just fine by me. The next time I see one of my clients, I’ll have to tease him a bit over having noticed him darkening their door late this afternoon.

One of my little chores this morning, was to help a new homeowner get an approximate measurement of where his lot lines are. Unfortunately most young homeowners have no clue as to where their property lines begin, which is normally at the inside of the front sidewalk if there is one there. Unfortunately, today’s measurement had to begin at the center of the street because his home doesn’t have sidewalks, and since his is on a corner, he didn’t have a clue how far his side lot ran. After I carefully took my measurements, I announced to him that the row of trees he thinks is his neighbors, is most certainly on his property. He was happy to know his lot was wider than he thought, but not sure if he was keen on being responsible for those trees should there be any branches coming down during our wicked windstorms.

There were two showings on several of my listings today, so hopefully there’ll be offers coming in on them. With there being so few homes to choose from, I’ll not be surprised if they go under contract before the snow flies. I will have to say, after seeing the homes that are now under contract, there’s still some really big spending going on. I’m not sure if I’d want to own a $500K – $700K home here in Mason City when knowing our population has dropped again and still more businesses closing, not to mention how our real estate taxes seem to get jacked up each and every year. It’s no wonder I’m finding all the more living from paycheck to paycheck. I dare not say how many I know who don’t even have $1K in cash on hand for emergencies. Pretty scary isn’t it?

Tonight’s One-liner is: Progress is humanity’s ability to complicate simplicity.

Joe Chodur

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