One of the great things about living in Baldwin County, AL is that there are several different settings where people can live. You can own a condo on the Gulf, have a fish camp on the river, live in a bustling urban area, or even mark your spot in the rural countryside. Actually, even though Baldwin is the fastest growing county in the state, there is an abundance of opportunity to own property in rural areas. I can say that I've lived in both the city and the country, so putting together a list of pros and cons may be helpful for your next purchase.
Pros of Rural Living
Living in a rural area provides another layer of privacy simply because there are less people around. I know that sounds obvious but, when you don't have to worry about nosy neighbors gossiping about you, traveling salespeople, or people generally getting in your business, you will feel a sense of privacy that an 8- foot fence can't deliver.
Larger home sites
In the city or suburbs, you may be lucky to have a yard that comes anywhere near a 1/2 acre. Rural areas typically offer homes that sit on multiple acres, giving you the ability and freedom to do whatever you want, even if it's nothing.
Distance between neighbors
This goes along with privacy, but living in the country puts a stop to peering eyes since most of the homes are far apart, separated by trees, or aren't even in shouting distance from each other. In many cases you may not even be able to see another house from yours. Yes, you will have fewer neighbors, but they often tend to be better neighbors.
There is something to be said for peace and serenity. You can walk outside at night and actually see the stars. The only noise you may hear is the sound of crickets and frogs. When you can take away light and noise pollution, traffic, stop lights, and everything else the city offers, it really helps one to relax and de-stress. Also, the very backdrop of your surroundings can bring peace. You can actually watch the sunset over a tree line versus a building. Nature alone can bring with it a sense of serenity that is unmatched.
You can have more toys
Living the rural life provides you the opportunity to own things that you couldn't operate in the city like mini-bikes for the kids, guns, ATV's, drones, or whatever your heart's desire. Activities can be endless, as well. For instance, most people can't play paintball in their suburban backyard.
It can be a safer lifestyle
Yes, there is crime in rural areas, as well, but the more people that you can take out of the equation the less chance that you'll have to worry about it.
Cost of living is typically cheaper
This is simply a supply and demand issue. Rural properties tend to be less per square foot due to the fact that the masses of people choose to live in the city, thus driving up costs.
Well, if you have ever wanted to own something other than a dog, cat, bird, or snake, living the "country life" affords you having whatever you want, be it horses, chickens, goats, or even llamas. Most Homeowner's Associations for city and suburban neighborhoods have provisions that disallow owners from having "farm animals". This is usually not the case in rural areas.
I don't believe that anyone has ever complained about having cleaner air, and most people would probably agree that country air is cleaner than city air.
You can have a large garden
City dwellers who have a green thumb often grow herbs or may have a tomato plant or two; however, with more land you can grow as much of your own food as you'd like.
You can be as self-sufficient as you want to be
Whether it's growing your own vegetables, raising your own beef, producing water from a well, or even using solar panels, living in a rural area allows you to rely on yourself as much as you would like. You could even go off the grid altogether!
Cons of Rural Living
You'll have to get used to the quiet
Believe it or not, it took me several days to get use to the isolation of living in the country. Literally, the only thing you will hear is the sound of bugs, wildlife, and the sound of your own voice running off wildlife, in some cases. Even though it may take some time to transition from your "suburb" nervous system to the sounds of the great outdoors, you will eventually settle in.
Distance to important places
Are you good with being an hour away from a hospital? Although distance from humanity may be the pull for moving to a rural area, it may be frustrating if your spouse needs a loaf of bread and the nearest store is 20 miles away.
If you have school-aged children, they may have longer rides on the bus, even more than hour each way.
Most people today rely on their internet on a daily basis, and living in the country will not provide lightning-fast service. More than likely, you'll have internet access provided through a dish, which works, but if you're used to speed, you'll have to get used to it. Also, for all those who are used to a dish for cable or internet, pray it doesn't rain hard during an important moment.
If you are someone who needs constant stimulation in the form of restaurants, movies, Starbucks, Target, etc.., you may feel that living the rural lifestyle will be frustrating. Going anywhere will involve more time, expense, and planning than if you live in town.
While living in a rural area, you will have to be okay with dealing with more bugs. There are absolutely more insects in the country than in the city, and, I swear, they have to be bigger. You know it's bad when you can feel the mosquitoes hitting you through your shirt! I think that, in time, most people can get used to it though.
Dealing with wildlife
Well, there is just a difference in what kind of wildlife you'll find in the city versus the country and, depending on where you live, some people will have more of an issue with wildlife than others. When I lived in the woods for 7 years, I encountered snakes, possums, raccoons, bear, wild turkeys, and lots of deer.
Employment is scarce in rural areas, so a lengthy drive may be necessary. On the other other, some cities are so large and traffic is so bad that the drive may be comparable to what you're used to.
So there you go, all of the pros and cons of living in a rural area that I could come up with, and I'm sure there are more of each. For more information about rural homes for sale and living the country life in the Baldwin County area, please give me a call from the information below.
About the author: The above Real Estate information on Pros and Cons of Rural Living was provided by Jeff Nelson of IXL Real Estate – Eastern Shore. Jeff can be reached via email at email@example.com or by phone at 251-654-2523. Jeff has helped people move in and out of properties for nearly 12 years.
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