Author Topic: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)  (Read 1318 times)

gaja

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Our oldest child is deaf, and when she starts high school in 1.5 years she can choose from 5 schools nationally: Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim, Stavanger, and Sandefjord. Since we would rather not send a 16 year old off to live alone, the whole family will be moving. I miss living by the ocean, and we have family in Bergen, so that is currently on top of our list. But Oslo would be easy, since I could keep my job.

The property market in Bergen is... quite entertaining. I don't think they have a very strict planning department in the city, because there are a lot of creating solutions. We are looking for a smallish house, preferably a fixer upper. Sitting on two houses will not be a very large drain on our finances, and it will give us time to make the new house livable before moving. So I think we will be buying within the next 12 months. I will be sharing finds here, and would highly appreciate any types of comments.

House #1: This one hit a lot of boxes, but was sold before we had time to look at it. Ocean view, fixer upper, not too large, possibilities for a kitchen garden, and outhouses for DH's hobbies. It sold today for 3,96 million NOK (~396 000 USD) without the boat house. https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=200982479

House #2: This is just beautiful, and located right in the middle of the city. Downside: no place for parking. Nothing, not even curbside. And it might be a bit too pretty for us. https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=201144986

House #3: This is too expensive and a bit small for us, but a good example of the weird houses available in central Bergen: https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=182491212

House #4: This is my dream, but completely unrealistic as long as the kids live at home since the closest high school is across the fjord. A small farm in Hardanger (the fruit district just south east of Bergen). Tiny village with 220 inhabitants, a lot of cultural activities and historical sites, possibilities for renting out the cottage or mountain cottage to tourists, good hunting and fishing rights, making apple cider is legal in this fjord, and due to water rights the property has passive income of ~6000 USD/year. If we moved here, we could FIRE. https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=179707610 and the village web page: https://www.herand.no/

Dicey

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Following along for the international house porn. I viewed the first three using Google Translate and the captions were pretty hilarious.

Watchmaker

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Mostly just posting to follow the international real estate. I don't know your country well--I've only spent a few days in Oslo and Sandefjord and really enjoyed both of them.

The farmhouse sounds really neat and looks fascinating. What is the barrel/well/silo shaped thing on the side of the building?

theoverlook

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It's really cool to me to look at houses on the other side of the world.

I noticed they do ceiling light fixtures differently there. It looks like they put a junction box on the wall then run a wire across the ceiling to the light location. Here in the US we pretty much always put all the wiring inside the walls, even to the point of ripping up walls and patching them to add or move light fixtures. I got a good laugh at house #3 where there was actually a box in the ceiling then they moved the light over to the wall and so had a wire running from the ceiling to the wall. Opposite day!

gaja

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@Dicey The cations are rather hilarious in Norwegian too. I think real estate agents have their own language.

@Watchmaker The yellow house is the house for living, that red one is a combined barn/sheephouse/toolshed/whatever. The round thing is a silo for hay. If you look at photo #7 you can drive into the upper levels of the barn from the other side, and dump the hay in from the top. Since the sheep house was in the basement, this layout kind of makes sense.  It has not been in use for years, and if we bought it we would rather use the old sheep house for making alcohol.

@theoverlook Some newer houses have wires inside the walls, but DH is adamant that everything should be out in the open. The types of houses we buy often have old and "creative" wiring, and he usually ends up rewiring most of the house before we move again. That is much easier when you can see everything. But I agree that it is not always very pretty.

Another farm, this one with fantastic fjord views, but no passive income. A lot of possibilities for AirBnB, but I'm a bit sceptical about what will happen here when the sea level rises. https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=121930838

Watchmaker

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@Watchmaker The yellow house is the house for living, that red one is a combined barn/sheephouse/toolshed/whatever. The round thing is a silo for hay. If you look at photo #7 you can drive into the upper levels of the barn from the other side, and dump the hay in from the top. Since the sheep house was in the basement, this layout kind of makes sense.  It has not been in use for years, and if we bought it we would rather use the old sheep house for making alcohol.

@theoverlook Some newer houses have wires inside the walls, but DH is adamant that everything should be out in the open. The types of houses we buy often have old and "creative" wiring, and he usually ends up rewiring most of the house before we move again. That is much easier when you can see everything. But I agree that it is not always very pretty.

Thanks for explaining. I've always actually liked the look of the wiring running along the walls/ceiling.

Linea_Norway

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About house nr 2.
There looks to be a parking space at the end of the street. Can't you rent a p-place there? A bit inconvenient not to be able to park at your place when you want to pack for a vacation. We often camp and need a fully packed car.

Alternative, are you willing to and allowed to, to turn the front yard into a p-place?

Another alternative, do you need a car fulltime if you live in a city? Could you manage with an (electrical) cargo bicycle? (google bakfiets). And join nabobil or another car share service.

About the farm in Hardanger, I guess that kind of houses will pop up from time to time, also in a couple of years.

gaja

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About house nr 2.
There looks to be a parking space at the end of the street. Can't you rent a p-place there? A bit inconvenient not to be able to park at your place when you want to pack for a vacation. We often camp and need a fully packed car.

Alternative, are you willing to and allowed to, to turn the front yard into a p-place?

Another alternative, do you need a car fulltime if you live in a city? Could you manage with an (electrical) cargo bicycle? (google bakfiets). And join nabobil or another car share service.

About the farm in Hardanger, I guess that kind of houses will pop up from time to time, also in a couple of years.

I think the large parking place belongs to the shop, so I doubt it will be easy to get to use it. They neighbors have dug out garages below the gardens, but since this now seems to be a historically protected area it might not be possible anyone. But if we were very interested we could of course ask. The house is very central, so it would be possible to be car free. We do a lot of camping during the summer, but renting a van for a few months would be cheaper than owning a car year round. I think the main reason I don't love house #2 is that it is to "pretty" - we are more happy in fixer uppers.

The farm: I have already seen a few small farms/homesteads pop up and disappear already, so I'm sure you're right. I just really liked that one - with all its mismatched chairs...

How are your househunt going? Will you be renting for a while where you are, or are you considering moving and/or buying something in 2021?

SunnyDays

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The settings are all stunning.  I quite like house #2, which you think is too "pretty."  But isn't that the point of buying a fixer-upper - to make it prettier?  If it's already been done for you, all the better!  The total lack of parking would be a problem though, unless you can create a space in the yard off the street beside the steps?

Show us some houses in Oslo!

Linea_Norway

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Sorry, quoting a question in a part of a post is a bit of a hassle on a smallish phone.

We are still in the rental and we have a moral, but not legal contract for minimum a year. You might know, a contract either needs to be time bound, or not and ours is only time bound for the first year, so not a legal construction. But never mind. We started renting in June.
We are still most interested in finding a house on Inderøy. But there is still a big doubt whether that is the best place to live. I don't know anymore. I have been trying out the NRK future climate calculator for different places, in case that would be an argument. ;-). Inderøy isn't going to be that bad, apart from storm floods. But already now has only 44 skiing days. We just spent two weeks on Lofoten without any snow and quite a bit of rain. Also some beautiful days with the sun just under the horizon. When we drove back, most of Trøndelag was very green. Is that just this winter or is it an example of the future? Now we are at our cabin with a good amount of snow and had our first skiing trip yesterday. But I would also like to live in a place with decent CC skiing conditions near home. And not too far driving from the cabin in the Røros region. (max 7 hours)
So, we check what comes for sale on Inderøy, which isn't so many houses. So far, we haven't been too enthusuastic about anything yet. Maybe we should widen our search to more areas. And we should spend spring/summer to investigate other areas.
I must says that places like Lofoten give a much more dramatic view to look at. And the dark time isn' t that bad if you manage to get outside during daylight. But I fear that the sea climate gives generally rainy winters with frozen ice on the ground, which we also experienced a lot. And it is so very far from everything, like the cabin.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2020, 12:35:38 AM by Linea_Norway »

Linea_Norway

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2020, 12:26:13 AM »
I wouldn't really worry about a house being too nice. If you own it, you can change what you don't like.
I liked the garden in that house, or at least the options of what you could do with it. I personally would like to live more remote, as cities generally generate noise.

gaja

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2020, 05:35:20 AM »
Sorry, quoting a question in a part of a post is a bit of a hassle on a smallish phone.

We are still in the rental and we have a moral, but not legal contract for minimum a year. You might know, a contract either needs to be time bound, or not and ours is only time bound for the first year, so not a legal construction. But never mind. We started renting in June.
We are still most interested in finding a house on Inderøy. But there is still a big doubt whether that is the best place to live. I don't know anymore. I have been trying out the NRK future climate calculator for different places, in case that would be an argument. ;-). Inderøy isn't going to be that bad, apart from storm floods. But already now has only 44 skiing days. We just spent two weeks on Lofoten without any snow and quite a bit of rain. Also some beautiful days with the sun just under the horizon. When we drove back, most of Trøndelag was very green. Is that just this winter or is it an example of the future? Now we are at our cabin with a good amount of snow and had our first skiing trip yesterday. But I would also like to live in a place with decent CC skiing conditions near home. And not too far driving from the cabin in the Røros region. (max 7 hours)
So, we check what comes for sale on Inderøy, which isn't so many houses. So far, we haven't been too enthusuastic about anything yet. Maybe we should widen our search to more areas. And we should spend spring/summer to investigate other areas.
I must says that places like Lofoten give a much more dramatic view to look at. And the dark time isn' t that bad if you manage to get outside during daylight. But I fear that the sea climate gives generally rainy winters with frozen ice on the ground, which we also experienced a lot. And it is so very far from everything, like the cabin.

We are looking for very different things: I've shoveled enough snow for a lifetime, so we are avoiding all properties where snow could be an issue.

Both Inderøy and Lofoten are beautiful, but there has never been much snow that close to the coast. I've got a friend from Inderøya, and he mentioned the other day that when he was a child it was colder, more ice, and less green, but normally not snow in December. I think you need to get closer to the mountains to be sure to have snow. Have you considered areas further into the fjords? Snåsa, for instance? Or Sunndal? I've been looking a bit at this farm, due to the passive income from hydropower, hunting, and sale of mountain cabins, plus the bonus of having a mountain property with an old mountain farm house (sæter) and boat house. But the location is completely wrong for us: https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=193964883 It looks very remote, but Sunndalsøra is close by, and it doesn't take much more than an hour to drive to an airport. The municipality is very rich due to hydropower and industry, so it is well run and the property taxes are low.

Here is a map of the mountain part of the property - this area has guaranteed snow. It is owned together with other local farmers, and gives hunting and fishing rights: https://norgeskart.no/#!?project=seeiendom&zoom=10&lat=6969973.37&lon=157510.87&markerLat=6970429.105837374&markerLon=157931.87500393856&panel=Seeiendom&showSelection=true&layers=1002,1013,1014,1015&sok=Dansarhaugvegen


This one, closer to Bergen, also fell out of our list due to too much snow: https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=201362516
« Last Edit: December 18, 2020, 05:51:27 AM by gaja »

gaja

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2020, 05:46:23 AM »
The settings are all stunning.  I quite like house #2, which you think is too "pretty."  But isn't that the point of buying a fixer-upper - to make it prettier?  If it's already been done for you, all the better!  The total lack of parking would be a problem though, unless you can create a space in the yard off the street beside the steps?

Show us some houses in Oslo!

Houses in Oslo are boring. The prices are crazy, so we can only afford smallish apartments outside the city center, like this: https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=199120039

SunnyDays

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2020, 10:37:11 AM »
I love that last one in Bergen.  Rustic and rambly outside, but modern inside.  I hear you on the snow issue though.

The Oslo apartment is nice but has no character.  And expensive!  How does anyone afford to live even more centrally?

Linea_Norway

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2020, 11:31:33 AM »
I love that last one in Bergen.  Rustic and rambly outside, but modern inside.  I hear you on the snow issue though.

The Oslo apartment is nice but has no character.  And expensive!  How does anyone afford to live even more centrally?

This is not expensive for Oslo at all. A friend of mine and his SO have bought a more central, new apartment at the sea side of Oslo (Bjørvika). The price was 16 or 18 mil NOK, I don't remember exactly. But that is what we call expensive. Even I got a shock. This is a person I tipped about the concept of early retirement a few years ago, but he obviously didn't read the details about not buying a clown house.

If Gaja wants to live in the vicinity of Oslo, there are other options around the train connections with Oslo. A bit cheaper, but not very cheap. I think I would rather live close to the parents, therefore Bergen.

gaja

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2020, 03:41:14 PM »
Got a few tips for the Sandefjord area. Especially this house on Veierland is very interesting: the island is car free, and the transport to Sandefjord takes 15 minutes by boat + 15 minutes by car/bus.

https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=184019812

Green_Tea

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2020, 03:46:28 PM »
thinking a bit outside the box here - do the schools offer boardinghouses? If they do, it could be an option for your daughter - if she would like to - to live there during the week and you could live a bit further away. It could be a great experience.
(When I was 14 and 16 I spent a year and part of a year in a boarding school (abroad) and I absolutely loved it. The second boarding school I went to was just like that for kids with parents living a bit remotely (mostly up in the mountains in that case) so they went home for the weekends.)
« Last Edit: December 19, 2020, 03:52:39 PM by Green_Tea »

gaja

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2020, 04:36:55 PM »
thinking a bit outside the box here - do the schools offer boardinghouses? If they do, it could be an option for your daughter - if she would like to - to live there during the week and you could live a bit further away. It could be a great experience.
(When I was 14 and 16 I spent a year and part of a year in a boarding school (abroad) and I absolutely loved it. The second boarding school I went to was just like that for kids with parents living a bit remotely (mostly up in the mountains in that case) so they went home for the weekends.)

The deaf kid can live in a border house with staff who know sign language, paid by the state. She claims she wants to do that, I think she could manage, but the father doesn't like the idea. He had to move from home to go to school at 16, and did not like it, although he managed to get through it. I had some class mates in high school from rural areas who quit school because they couldn't manage living alone. They all had to rent rooms on the private market. Thank you for the input about the boardinghouse - it sounds like that is a different and safer experience?

There are no such options for the hearing child, but she has a larger number of schools to choose between. So even if we lived in a rural area, she should be able to find a school within bus distance.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #18 on: December 20, 2020, 06:27:54 AM »
Got a few tips for the Sandefjord area. Especially this house on Veierland is very interesting: the island is car free, and the transport to Sandefjord takes 15 minutes by boat + 15 minutes by car/bus.

https://www.finn.no/realestate/homes/ad.html?finnkode=184019812

Looks nice and quiet, idyllic. How do you get there? By public ferry or by private boat? There might be a few weeks a year where you could have trouble with a (small) boat and ice, although this is south coast and sea. Maybe such problems are only in inland lakes.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2020, 11:56:23 AM by Linea_Norway »

norajean

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #19 on: December 20, 2020, 10:00:57 AM »
Bergen is too rainy and isolated.  If you can keep your job (as a bonus), I would stay in Oslo.

lhamo

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #20 on: December 20, 2020, 03:02:54 PM »
There's this:

https://uwcrcn.no/

I attended the original UWC in South Wales and it literally changed my life.

No idea how competitive entry is in Norway these days, or how much scholarship funding there is. 

Green_Tea

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Re: Which house/farm should we buy? (With photos of beautiful Norwegian nature)
« Reply #21 on: December 20, 2020, 03:20:48 PM »
thinking a bit outside the box here - do the schools offer boardinghouses? If they do, it could be an option for your daughter - if she would like to - to live there during the week and you could live a bit further away. It could be a great experience.
(When I was 14 and 16 I spent a year and part of a year in a boarding school (abroad) and I absolutely loved it. The second boarding school I went to was just like that for kids with parents living a bit remotely (mostly up in the mountains in that case) so they went home for the weekends.)

The deaf kid can live in a border house with staff who know sign language, paid by the state. She claims she wants to do that, I think she could manage, but the father doesn't like the idea. He had to move from home to go to school at 16, and did not like it, although he managed to get through it. I had some class mates in high school from rural areas who quit school because they couldn't manage living alone. They all had to rent rooms on the private market. Thank you for the input about the boardinghouse - it sounds like that is a different and safer experience?

There are no such options for the hearing child, but she has a larger number of schools to choose between. So even if we lived in a rural area, she should be able to find a school within bus distance.

Oh YES! A boarding school is a very different experience than living on one's own - if you wish, I can tell you or your daughter more about my experience, which was in Europe as well. For me, at least, those years are among the best of my life! I think if your daughter likes the idea, she might just love the experience.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2020, 03:33:55 PM by Green_Tea »