Happy New Year! 2016 was a great year that started us on this journey and we're sad to see it go, but excited to see what 2017 will bring for our Wildernest.
The last time I blogged, we were battling with my insurance company to get some sort of insurance for our land while it sat vacant, potentially as a liability. After talking to other vacant land owners (it's a thing), my insurance agent, and a few legal professionals, we concluded that the driveway barricade was all we needed to do to cover our ass for the time being.
But our work doesn't end there! Over the past few months, we have been weighing potential options for getting power to the property. Because of that 900' driveway, it's a little more complicated than just having Eversource (the power company for those who are non-local) run a few wires to the house - there's a lot we're responsible for ourselves (and by that I mean our wallets).
Currently in 2017, there are two traditional ways to get power to a house: underground wires via trenching, or telephone poles. Underground is the preferred method for most, since the wires are less susceptible to damage caused by winds, falling trees, ice and those pesky hurricanes we get here in MA. However, Acushnet is basically one giant rock and our land has a lot of ledge:
It was also evident based on the giant boulders the seller's excavating company had set aside after doing the perc test:
Needless to say, our General Contractor was concerned that the excavating costs to go underground were going to be outrageous because of said ledge.
So we looked into telephone poles. After surveying the driveway and staking out where the poles would go, Eversource said they would cover the cost of 2 poles. Great, right? Except we need 5-6 of them to properly get the wiring to the house - fantastic.
At this point, we had two options for poles: buy them via Eversource for the cost of our arms, legs and first born, or buy them via a private contractor that does them to Eversource standards for slightly less. Our GC went out and got numerous quotes, most around the $9,000 range and not all included the wiring. I wasn't aware telephone poles were made of solid gold, carefully encrusted with only the finest diamonds from rare, exotic mines.
Just as we were starting to warm up to the sticker shock, Eversource mailed us a bill for $7,400. I was able to regain consciousness enough to give them a call, in which they assured me this was a). not a bill that had to be paid and b.) would not suddenly damage the credit I worked so hard for if it remained unpaid. It was a bill that outlined the expense we would take on if we purchased poles via a private contractor because even though they'll be made and installed by someone else, Eversource is required to inspect and take them over for life when they're finished. This is a one time charge of $7,400.
Currently, we've decided to explore a third and final option - taking the 2 free poles from Eversource, which would bring us 1/4 up the driveway, and go underground from there. The second pole would be installed somewhere around this area, right where our new neighbor has a shed that encroaches on to our property (nothing like telling someone they have to remove their shed to start a relationship).
Assuming our future neighbor doesn't set all 6 acres on fire, this would get us passed the first area of ledge. From there, we would trench for the underground wires and hope to god we don't have to dig through Mount Everest II to get them where they need to go. As of now, it's just a waiting game to hear back from excavators and electricians before we can move forward with power.
Eversource continues to remain high up on my shit list next to spiders and Hitler, but I have no doubt we'll figure out the best way to go about this without them taking all of our dignity.