City slickers who want to buy something

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by prhamell, Mar 5, 2005.

  1. prhamell

    prhamell Well-Known Member

    Oct 11, 2002
    This is about the fourth or fifth time that something like this has happened to us in the four years that we've lived here. This morning a guy "attempts" to drive down our road and driveway with a summer time sports car with summer time no tread tires. We live in northern WI so of course we have a lot of snow. He finally abadons his car and walks the rest of way up to the house to tell my husband that he knows the previous owners of our house and was wondering if he could have (have, not buy) our outside wood burning stove. My husband had to choke on his laughter and told him that we have put a lot of money into the stove and that's primarily how we heat our house, so no he couldn't have it. How brazen are people? We're currently looking for a used suburban, but that doesn't mean we're going to go up to someone's door and ask if we can buy theirs just because we see one sitting in the driveway. Have any of you run into this before? My husband said having the guy stop by was worthwhile just to watch his little sports car spin and fish tail all around. He kept laughing until the guy came back and asked my husband to help push him out of our driveway. Becky
  2. Ole Man Legrand

    Ole Man Legrand Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2003
    I hope you got his Auto License # . You may be missing things at a later date.
    I hate to advertise in the newspaper. The characters that come looking are more interested in what I have than in what I am selling.

  3. buellkat

    buellkat Active Member

    Oct 14, 2004
    West Mid Michigan
    I do not think Becky is/was "selling" anything. This is just a stranger coming around their home. I cannot believe these individuals have the nerve to try such a thing.
    We live 400' back, so it is a long drive, and when a person/vehicle appears, it is rare if it is not expected company. It amazes me that one would drive back "in the woods" if they have no idea or intentional reason for even being there. I always walk out and ask 'if I may help them' and then they proceed to ask 100 questions that I answered in the first question. 'Sorry, I do not know and I can NOT help you'...........etc Have a Nice Day basically
  4. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jul 20, 2004
    I was moving into a house one time and a car pulled up. Couple gets out, guy tells me it's a nice house and wants to know if it's for sale. I tell him it isn't, my dad just bought it and I was in the process of moving in. He says, "Well, you won't mind if we take a look around" and starts in the door. I stop him and tell him I DO mind strangers coming in and looking around MY house and he needs to leave. He says they'll just look around the outside. I call my Dad and as soon as Daddy steps out of his truck with his pistol strapped on his side the idiot and his wife jump in the car and take off. I was SO mad...and kind of nervous too, which is why I called my Daddy (luckily he just lived across the road).

    One day I was out raking leaves at a house in town I was renting. A woman pulls up, gets out and starts peeking in the windows! I ask her what she's doing and she says, "Is this house for rent?" I told her NO and if she didn't leave I was calling the cops. GEESH.

    Since we have moved out to our farm my husband has had one coworker tell him it wouldn't be any trouble for us to raise him a beef cow. The guy said he would buy the cow and we could raise it for him. UMMMM...I don't think so!

    And just recently a coworker asked my husband if we had a lot of horse manure. He said he'd like to come over and get a truckload. I was hot...that's for MY garden! I told hubby the guy can come muck out the stalls and have what he cleans out, but from now on if someone wants manure they can pay for it.
  5. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    This thread reminds me of the joke that was posted here some while back:

    Shepherd and The Yuppie

    A shepherd was herding his flock in a remote pasture when suddenly a
    brand new BMW advanced out of a dust cloud towards him.

    The driver, a young man in an Armani suit, Gucci shoes, Ray Ban
    sunglasses and YSL tie-leans out the window and asks the shepherd, "If I
    tell you exactly how many sheep you have in your flock, will you give me

    The shepherd looks at the man, obviously a yuppie, then looks at his
    peacefully grazing flock and calmly answers, "Sure. Why not?"

    The young man parks his car, whips out his Dell notebook computer,
    connects it to his AT&T cell phone, surfs to a NASA page on the
    Internet, where he calls up a GPS satellite navigation system to get an
    exact fix on his location which he then feeds to another NASA satellite
    that scans the area in an ultra-high-resolution photo.

    The young man then opens the digital photo in Adobe photoshop and
    exports it to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany.

    Within seconds, he receives an email on his Palm Pilot that the image
    has been processed and the data stored. He then accesses a MS-SQL
    database through an ODBC connected Excel spreadsheet with hundreds of
    complex formulas. He uploads all of this data via an email on his
    Blackberry and, after a few minutes, receives a response. Finally, he
    prints out a full-color, 150-page report on his hi-tech, miniaturized HP
    LaserJet printer and finally turns to the shepherd and says, "You have
    exactly 1,586 sheep."

    "That's right. Well, I guess you can take one of my sheep," says the

    He watches the young man select one of the animals and looks on amused
    as the young man stuffs it into the trunk of his car.

    Then the shepherd says to the young man, "Hey, if I can tell you exactly
    what your business is, will you give him back to me?"

    The young man thinks about it for a second and then says, "Okay, why

    "You're a consultant," says the shepherd.

    "Wow! That's correct," says the young man, "but how did you guess

    "No guessing required," answered the shepherd.

    "You showed up here even though nobody called you; you want to get paid
    for an answer I already knew, to a question I never asked; and you don't
    know crap about my business.

    Now give me back my dog!
  6. milkstoolcowboy

    milkstoolcowboy Farmer

    Sep 13, 2003
    I bought a farm with a building site back in 1988. The owner died and they sold all of his farms to settle his estates. This farm had house, barn and several outbuildings (crib, granary, machine shed, cattle sheds, hog house), but noone had lived in the house for over 40 years.

    Within a couple months of having the place, an anhydrous applicator, rotary hoe and old horse-drawn spreader "disappeared." I got everything else that wasn't nailed down brought home, and I had a couple neighbors who asked for a couple items, so I said no problem.

    I wanted to save as much lumber from the sheds as I could, so I hired a neighbor and his boy to tear down a couple sheds and save the good lumber. Paid them $35/hour and they were real good workers. One afternoon, I went over to help them, and my neighbor said: "Jesse was here this morning, and he got those lightning rods you promised him."

    Jesse was a neighbor who I'd known for 35+ years, but I'd never promised him any lightning rods, so I asked my neighbor what gives. "Yeah, he went down to the cattle shed to get them, but said his back was givin him trouble, so my boy and I got up on the roof and took them off for him." I couldn't believe the crust of someone to come up in broad daylight and take something.

    I few weeks later I saw him on the street in town, so I told him: "It's bad enough you stole from me, but next time hire your own damn help or do it yourself." People seem to think an abandoned farmstead is community property, take whatever you want, and those doin the taking aren't strangers most of the time.
  7. HoosierDeb

    HoosierDeb Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    N. Indiana
    I have a truck I keep intending to get fixed. I need one around here and that one is paid for so I keep meaning to get it fixed... just haven't gotten around to it. Every so often someone comes knocking on the door, wanting to know if the truck is for sale. The truck is way back in my yard, facing the woods, not up near the road or even the house. There is no sign on it. I"m tempted to put a sign on it that says NO! THE TRUCK IS NOT FOR SALE!!!
    Evidentally, someone didn't like the answer or else they just figured that that old truck didn't need a tailgate anyway, because one night I came home from work and the tailgate was gone.
  8. Tonya

    Tonya Guest

    We used to have a lane that was just under a 10th of a mile long. My Dad encouraged the asparagas to grow at the end of the lane and about half way up on one side. He'd then let the last sproutings grow and they'd be little snow fences. All summer long we'd have fresh asparagas-got us through some tough financial times.

    One day a strage car came up the drive and the guy started to get out and pick the asparagas. I took our 100 pound dog and went out to as what he was doing on private property. He said he was getting some asparagas for dinner. I quickly told him it was PRIVATE asparagas, too! He still wasn't budging. I then told him that if he didn't get back in the car I was going to sic the well trained dog on him and then tell the cops that the dog was just protecting me from a rapist. (I was 16 and didn't think about what I was doing until I got to the car! I was scared to death!) Thankfully the guy got back in his car and we never saw him again.

    The opposite stuff has also happened. Folks have dropped stuff off, figuring we'd love to raise another cat/dog/goat whatever.
  9. highlands

    highlands Well-Known Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Mountains of Vermont, Zone 3
    I've worried about that too. My answer is dogs. Big dogs. Big loud dogs. Dogs that guard the livestock and homestead. Dogs that don't take kindly to strangers wandering around. Dogs that don't take no (from a stranger) for an answer. It works. They don't like strangers coming on our property when we're away or when we're here for that matter. I can always command them down - if I want to such as for guests. For random strangers we don't calm the dogs. You never know what the people might do and there have been several strange murders locally - The Darthmouth killings for one.

    We also almost always have one dog riding shotgun in the car. There have been carjackings even up here in Vermont. A big dog in the car makes them think twice and move on.

    Dogs are also good for keeping back the annual pilgrimages of religious evangelists and political canvassers. If I wanted to convert to their god I would already have done so. If I want to vote for them I will of my own accord but I don't want their litter.

    Classic question: "Does that dog bite?" [Asked while one or more of the dogs is speaking to them.]

    Possible answers: "Not yet today." "Maybe." "Well, it's never killed anyone." and my wife's favorite, "It's a dog [dummy]!" She generally don't say the dummy part but claims she wants to say it...

    Back to the original question, yes, we've had that sort of thing where people ask for, or try to take, stuff - about a dozen times a year. The answer is generally "No." unless I'm looking to sell the item in question in whick case the answer is "How much will you offer me?" When we first got here our first son's bike was on the lawn and someone stopped and took it - We're way out in the sticks and the house was 30' away and highly visible. They knew they were stealing. A similar incident happend with another child's toy. That was before we had dogs - now theives wouldn't get that far.
  10. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

    Feb 24, 2003
    I had one place I would go down pick about a gallon of Mushrooms every day,came home one day neighbors were out there picking them.

    One time move into a place,first night there this girl comes into our bedroom,she was looking for her boyfriend,that had lived there.

    Where I'm at now my neighbors came over picking my Raspberries.

    big rockpile
  11. woodsrunner

    woodsrunner Well-Known Member

    Nov 27, 2003
    It's a secret
    Last summer I caught a nieghbor stealing my cucumbers from the garden. When confronted he asked if I was goung to do anything with all those "beautiful onions". This was on the weds before labor day weekend. I informed him I intended to pull them and eat them over the winter. I went away saturday and sunday intending to harvest the onions on monday. I came home monday night and the garden had been raided again. I've caught this same nieghbor inside my barn "looking for his cat". I've caught him going through my truck.

    Now this spring all the other nieghbors are going to be mad at him, because I'm sick of stuff disapearing . I'm also sick of the other nieghbor sending his dogs into my yard to crap. My cousin owns a fence company. This year the yard gets a nice shiney new chain link fence to surround it.

    I also get the people that want to look through my barn for "stuff they might want to buy". I quietly inform them the only thing anybody will find around here is a load of buckshot. And they won't have to buy it, I'll send it thier way for free. They usually leave pretty quick.
  12. tooltime

    tooltime Border Ruffian

    Nov 16, 2003
    Other than immediate family, there are only a couple long-time close friends I let in my shop and machine shed, because I have lots of expensive tools in there and some valuable old equipment. I don't want to have people traipsing through there, as you never know who is casing the joint to come back and steal.
  13. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    If there is one thing I despise it is people who have a predilection to helping themselves to your property. Tresspassers and thieves I'd just as soon shoot as look at. I wish it were legal to do so. I have zero use for the scum. One day I was coming back from turkey hunting and came across a nice big patch of mushrooms. I didn't have a sack with me and there were probably a good 8 or 10 gallons worth. I came back the next day and the patch had been picked clean. I swear if I could have caught them I'd have skinned them. Back before I moved back to the homestead I had a house and outbuildings here. They were broken into constantly. Once they had stolen everything on the inside including the copper pipes and wiring they moved on to the outside. They stole the metal roof from the barn and the aluminum siding from the shed. The weather vanes and lighting rods were the first to go. The weathered barn siding was stolen and probably ended up at craft shows. I got so mad about it I told the volunteer FD to come burn the buildings down for practice. I also had a pond that people wouldn't stay out of so I brought down a dozer one day and ripped a hole in the dam.

    Now that I live here it isn't nearly as bad but there are more than a few sticky fingered types around. Most of them are deadbeats that live in town and go cruising looking for stuff to steal.

    People use to be worse about stealing nuts and berries but folks are getting to lazy to steal anything that takes actual work to collect these days. They will still steal mushrooms however. I've also found women in my timber stealing wildflowers.

    Like tooltime I am really reluctant to have people I don't know around my place. There was a guy here just a few weeks ago that I know was casing the place. He was brought by a friend of mine to pick up an item but I could tell by the way he was looking at stuff he was looking for stuff to steal. I took him aside before he left and told him Iseen him eyeballing everything and that if anything came up missing I'd come looking for him.
  14. cast iron

    cast iron Well-Known Member

    Oct 4, 2004
    Western WA
    Yup, I agree. Shortly after we bought this place years ago I built my then young son one of those nice wooden swing/play sets. It had the swings, monkey bars, slides, the whole nine yards. I put it in my front yard (vs. the back yard) as we could keep an eye on my son a little better that way.

    Two days after completing this thing I come home from work to find a bunch of mexican kids and two of their moms playing on the play-set. They were from a mexican family that lived in a house across the street. Waaaaaaaay across the street.

    I informed them as best I could (none of them spoke english) that under no circumstance were they to be on my property without my permission, much less using my equipment on my property.

    They couldn't understand how I could be so mean to them.

  15. BDB


    Feb 26, 2005
    CT for now
    when my wife and i first moved into her parents farm after they passed away we had a guy come asked if we wanted to get rid of the stone walls surounding the feilds and property he also said he will remove them i said whats going to keep the animals from leaving the property then he didnt have a answer for that one so we asked him to take a hike we have had other stuff grow legs over the years though hunters seem to make there way through the property to and insist that it is state land i do not mind the hunters so much if they come and ask to hunt there but they just asume they can and do not know the diference between a sheep and a deer they figure if it moves shoot it
  16. Wilbur

    Wilbur Well-Known Member

    May 6, 2004
    We have fortunately never had anything stolen but because we have a nice pond behind our house people assume they can just walk through my yard to get to it (the pond isn't ours). They then proceed to hang out in my backyard to enjoy the pond!!

    One day I looked out and there were 5 kids on our swingset and a woman sitting in one of our lawn chairs. I asked her if I could help her and she said "Oh no thanks the kids are just playing!" I couldn't *bleeping* believe it!!!!

    I am betting our new Shepherd will curb some of this behavior this year! :haha:
  17. cchapman84

    cchapman84 Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 2003
    We had a grill stolen from our old camp one time. Funny thing was, it wasn't a nice grill by any means. It was about 20 years old and getting ready to fall apart, but someone stole it anyway.

    There was another time when a guy broke out of prison and broke into our first hunting camp. He had been in prison for arson--for burning down hunting camps. But he took great care of ours, did the dishes and everything. Only damage was the window pane he broke to get in. My parents still think that it was because he saw all the baby stuff (I was only about 1 at the time). The cops got really upset when mom & dad refused to press charges. They said he didn't do any damage, so what was the problem?

    Cameron in VT
  18. Kenneth in NC

    Kenneth in NC Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2002
    :eek: OK let's look at it from the other side.

    I yearned to buy a golf cart that I saw at a neighbors house. For over 2 months every time I rode by I thought how nice it'd be to own that golf cart to go down to the creek. Finally one day it was gone so I stoped to ask about it. The guy said he gave it away just to get it out of the yard. OUCH that hurt :waa:

    So since then if it's in the yard and I think I want it I might stop by ask "how much for it?" I'd hate to miss out because I didn't ask.

    Now as to THIEVES Cut Off Their Hands first offense their HEADS the second offense.

  19. reluctantpatriot

    reluctantpatriot I am good without god.

    Mar 8, 2003
    Terra Planet, Sol System, Milky Way Galaxy
    When I moved to my grandfather's property here near Gravois Mills, my parents and I began by living in his summer place which was an old 1950's model moble home. This place is near a creek and we had all kinds of trespassers that wanted to fish on the land, some from the town and others who were city folks. Some of those were very violent in reaction, others were more passive and just left.

    Had some trespassers doing a picnic in our driveway there and others doing barbecue. Still others blocked our driveway having a family reunion there.

    When we moved to the back 40 acres of the 80 acres, we had people come up the 3/10th of a mile driveway and ask what we did to the road that went through there. Even when it was explained that the driveway was dozed out of the timber and was a driveway, not a gravel road, they still didn't understand. Others have wondered where the trout farm was. We are on top of a ridgeline, about 160 feet above the creek and downstream of the farm property.

    Had some city folks think it was ok to dump their trash all along our driveway on their way down from telling them that this wasn't the trout farm.

    When I see a strange vehicle at first I was scared, when I was younger, but now I am reaching the point where I am about to come out of the house with a shotgun pointed at the vehicle because some of the visitors are getting a bit stuck on stupid. A month or so ago we had someone come up at 8 p.m. at night and ask permission to raccoon hunt, and had his dogs and gun in the car. What kind of moron asks permission to hunt on land at night he has never been on in the daylight? Let alone that they are driving up a long driveway that at the mouth has two heavy gates, one of which is open unless we are gone, that have "No Trespassing" signs on them...and also say "No Hunting" "No Fishing" on them too.

    While the problems with trespassers are less in number than when I was younger, the incidents, in my opinion, seem to be getting more serious and make me more concerned. If one person I don't know wants to come up here at night asking to hunt, who else might think it is ok to come up here later in the night?

    I think I just need to get out and do more paper target practice to keep my shooting skills up. In the process, the noise should provide sufficient deterent I hope.

    I do agree that some people are simply stuck on stupid. Too many people are willing to steal or trespass because they think they can get away with it and have no respect for the property of others.
  20. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2002
    When we bought the house/land, we stipulated that the prior owners had to remove 2 large broken down trucks from the field (one an old septic truck, the other some type of utility truck) before closing, which they did. Nine months pass and the man is back in town from retiring in Florida, parked in the middle of the driveway and looking at an old hay rake in the field. I never had met him, only dealt with the realtor. He said he was arranging to get the hayrake he promised his son. I said no, sir, it isn't yours any more and in fact, it belongs to the man who agreed to cut our field in trade. He didn't give me too hard a time, but he said the contract allowed him to come back and get the machines from the field.....I had to remind him it was the two dead ones before closing. Glad I was here that day!

    Now, the other side of the coin is that if there is a road right-of-way even unpaved or not used by cars currently, the public is allowed to traverse it. We had to remove a gate that blocked such a right-of-way through a tiny corner of our property. But I have since realized that this ends up working in our favor, as we can now walk the woods through some property I find pretty since that is the right-of-way....and I don't have to ask permission since I remain on that right-of-way.