Rural road lot with telephone poles/lines in front..bad idea?

farmhousegirlApril 15, 2012

We currently have a deposit a lot. We are working with the builder and architect to come up sketch drawings to get a price for the package before purchasing the lot.

I'm getting cold feet that the lot isn't the right one. We like it overall, great location, beautiful town etc. The only problem is that there are telephone poles running along the road, then the run down the left side of the property to go to a house that's set way back. They didn't bother me before, but now I'm realizing they may be an eyesore. I'm not sure if I'm just over blowing the concerns...I mean, there are telephone poles everywhere and I pay no attention to them. I guess it just seems really 'wirey' with the front and side having lines.

With that said, there are many beautiful homes built on the same road with telephone poles/electrical lines. Most of them have more trees around, so they sort of blend in. Our lot doesn't have trees in front, so they stick out more.

Thoughts? Thanks!!!

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My concern would be what is the easement, for the poles? Chances are, there will be a fairly wide easement across the property, for maintenance and repair...which can impact septic/sewer, well/water lines, electrical, phone, etc. Also, how big is your property? If it's a lot, then your house is probably going to be fairly close to the poles.

Telephone poles are not as much of a negative, as power poles (IMHO) but I wouldn't expect to pay full price for the lot, either. Unless you're getting a great deal on the land AND the poles won't impact your build...I'd keep looking.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 4:41PM
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Thanks Lavender.

The lot is 1.5 acres...rectagular..more deep than wide. So the house can sit back pretty far in the building envelope.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 4:55PM
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I happen to work for a utility and I can tell you the utility will have an easement through your property eventually. They will need to run electric/phone to your house. Most of the time the utility owns the wires/poles to the meter. If the meter is on your house or nearby you will be required to sign an easement to allow them to maintain their property.

I have seen many folks change their service from overhead to underground. There is a cost to do this, but if the location is worthy, it is an option. I'd contact the utility/phone company and find out how much they would charge to bury the service.

Good luck!


    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 5:45PM
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Telephone poles are the norm around here... just like in your area.
You get used to them in no time.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 7:00PM
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Thanks all...I don't think we'd be as bothered if it was just one side of the property, but it's two...front and left side.

Saftgeek, do you have any idea how costly going underground is? $5,000, $10,000, $20,000? I have no idea? They'd have to take out all the poles too. Yikes. I'm going to email the builder to ask if he knows anything about this.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 7:48PM
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There are all types of telephone poles from little ones with single wires to bigger doubles and on up. Why don't you post a few photos, but really it's what matters to you!
We can't see the context of your road, neighborhood and general area.
The gravel road that our new build is on has lines going across and down the lane, but we chose to bury the electric from the poles at the road to the house. It wasn't necessary but was important to us.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 8:41PM
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Thanks gbsim,
Where/who did you start with to get those lines buried? I'm not even sure if these are just electric or if there are phone lines there too?

Also, how costly is this? Thanks very much!!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 10:48PM
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The electric company can tell you the cost and procedures. And your builder has probably dealt with it before. I'm not sure if it's an rule of our electric coop or of the county but all new lines here must be underground now from any existing poles.

Going underground from the nearest pole to the new transformer for the house was "free" meaning that we didn't have to pay for the wire (up to I think about 150' and that's right where we were). The electric coop would have dug the trench but the upcharge for rock was very steep so we had our concrete excavator dig it (there was a bunch of rock in the way and he charge around $400.

It was required that the transformer be a certain nearness to the house.

From the transformer to the house was another 150' or so for us and the electric company handled the digging and charged by the foot for the wire. It was around $400 for that section all paid to the electric coop.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2012 at 11:17PM
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My concern would be the poles going to the house, behind you. The ones along the road, may not be lovely, but probably won't impact your build. The poles on the side of your property...that would be the easement that would concern me. It should be included with the legal description of the property.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2012 at 12:31AM
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Sorry I've not replied sooner. The cost to have an existing line buried will be more expensive than having a new line buried. Most of the time the cost to bury an existing line will be billed at actual cost. New services usually have an allowance for a certain number of poles or feet of underground line... For our coop we will provide 3 poles, then the cost is $750 per pole. For underground it is $2.50/ft and you provide the trench. Again, this is for new service.

Call your local utility and they'll meet with you to address your concerns. There are folks on hand that do nothing but cater to public concerns.

Good luck to you!


    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 8:44PM
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