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Residents Association of Greater Lake Mathews

RAGLM Board > Announcements > Security
3/13/2013 2:12:59 AM
LOVE this area!Reply: Tonette
We found the Gavilan/Lake Mathews area in 1986 when a friend invited us to a potluck here. We fell in love. Five years of searching later, we found a quiet corner of heaven. We've rarely worried about theft or safety. Thieves mainly are interested in your mailbox, especially if it's in a row with others and not monitored by a neighbor. We just never mail anything from it, and we pick up incoming mail promptly. Security is not a problem. Strangers stick out like a sore thumb. Coyotes generally stay out if you have big dogs. We haven't had a mountain lion in these parts (above Cajalco) since 1992. Rattlesnakes avoid properties with dogs, too. We have had 2 horses, but our water doesn't go over $40. Because we use drought-tolerant plants and don't use sprinklers. Propane isn't bad for us, since we use our fireplace and don't use our central heat. We did when the kids were small, and had to fill our tank 3 to four times a year at $300 a fill. Now we only fill one or twice a year. We use space heaters in the bathrooms and electric blankets. The house isn't even what you would call chilly. I can have guests over and not feel the need to turn on the heat. Our house is 2700 sq.ft. Electricity can be pricey, people around us say, but we don't pay much because we sheltered the south- and west-facing parts of our home with shade, we take advantage of SCE's summer savings program, and we only use the air in the a.m. til noon, then again after 5pm til 7pm or so. We love most of our neighbors, and we take care of each other. We enjoy the stars, the quiet, and the clean air. We hope to welcome you to the neighborhood! Just don't tell everybody about it, so it doesn't get too crowded! Haha. Toni
3/12/2013 7:01:07 PM
Amen, Hugh!Reply: Gayle Geer
Thank you for taking the time to share this with Sean. It blessed me, too.
3/12/2013 6:11:17 PM
Hugh said it perfectly.Reply: percheronpattie
Hugh, You couldn't have said it any better.  You have summed up Gavilan Hills area perfectly for a lot of us here feel the same way about our home and our animals and the wild life.  My family and I feel that way for sure. 

Jenny and family
3/12/2013 2:52:16 PM
Security, Seclusion, PrivacyReply: Hugh
A lot can be said for security, seclusion and privacy. Most everyone wants security and some level of privacy. It's the seclusion thing that is many times the kicker. My wife and I moved here from a lakefront home on Sunnymead Ranch Lake. Track home, neighbor eight feet away, street lights, sidewalks and the dreaded HOA that wanted to rule your life.

When we first looked at this property (we made an offer on the spot) we'ed never been out this way. Come on. Dirt road most of the way up to the house. Dirt everywhere, and a whole bunch of it. As I stood in front of the home looking out over the property (3.8 ac) I could not believe it. All I had was a lawnmower - and this place had no grass. What the heck was I going to do with all this?

My wife had a goal to have horses. We've had as many as 11 and now have six. Plus a bunch of dogs, cats, more rabbits and squirrels than we know what to do with. But, we have hundreds of finches, quail, dove and many beautiful hummingbirds and butterflies that please us to no end. And don't forget the absolutely wonderful hawks that troll the area.

The closest house to ours is over 75 yards away, others over a 100. No one peeking over the fence to see what we're up to. We do lock our gate at night. We have a video surveillance camera watching the entrance - but that's only because of a problematic part-time neighbor across the street. Have never had anything stolen or broken into. 

Yes, our water bill is a bit high - six horses drink a lot of water and our pool get's it's share as well. The house is all electric with the exception of the heater (it's propane) and the cost is sometimes painful. But that is simply part of loving where you live.

I'm 69 and my wife is 70 (Oh Lord, she'll kill me for that) and Obama would have to find a way to totally bankrupt or bomb us with his drones before we would move. Peace, quiet, privacy and safety. Our horses, dogs, cats and all the wonderful wild critters make for something very, very special.

I hope your family can find a way to put aside the concerns you've mentioned. The bonuses that await you, if you do decide to move, will outweigh any negativity. But, you'll just have to trust me on that...
3/12/2013 2:17:34 PM
Security measuresReply: Lisa
My husband drives a "work truck" filled with tools, it is not parked in the garage. The bins are never locked when we are home only when we plan to be away for any length of time. We are fully fenced with a gate BUT the gate is not yet electric. This means when I come home at night I have to get out, open the gate, pull in and then go back out and close it. I have never felt unsafe. I do have dogs. I desperately want an electric/solar powered gate but not for safety as much as convenience. Also my husband leaves very early in the morning and I am here alone, we too have guns and I would not be afraid to use one if need be. I do think you are a bit more vulnerable at the end of the street but there was nothing behind us when we moved in and I wish it were still that way. I think the electric fence on top of the existing fence on the back and side would be an inexpensive deterrent. I also forgot to mention for you to check out www.gavilangirls.com it is a great resource for local companies and people offering to work. But again, Nathan is correct living out here is not for everyone.
3/12/2013 12:59:20 PM
Securiity??Reply: Nathan
Let me try to help with some of the concern. First, I will say living out in a rural community and being the last house is not for everyone and will (no matter where you came from) take a little getting used to. Our biggest issue out here is property theft and I believe 95+% of it is petty metal theft. The sounds of the coyotes walking through your yard at night is enough to give you the chills, but you get used to that. Your best line of defense is your neighbors, get to know them. I honestly would not worry about theft to much as most thieves do not live up in this area and hardly travel up here to steal something they can steal close to home. That being said, it happens ocassionally. Most people that live rural own some sort of fire arm for protection simply for the reasons you state. We are the first and really only line of defense.

This is really something you will have to decide on your own, I am not sure where your house is located but I do know that our area has very little crime, and all the neighbors watch out for each other. It took me a good month or so to let go of some of the fear of being out in the middle of no where, but the benefits greatly out way the fear of something that may never happen.

Dogs, Alarm, and a gun and you should be fine. I have two small children and I never worry about them at the house, we feel safer living out here than we ever did living in the city. Hope this helps.
3/12/2013 9:25:17 AM
SecurityPost: sean k

Well last night was an eye opener and has presented morequestions that I really did not see when visiting the property during the day.

Some may quickly be able to figure where the house is but thelocation has presented its own issues to me. It is in the Santa Rosa Ranches atthe end of the road, with the us being the last house on the street. I broughta friend that is a “ranch hand” of sorts that can use heavy equipment and has alove for land. We got there in the evening and spent the last bits of daylightdiscussing the back yard and its potential and how much work there will bemaintaining it. He really quelled my concerns and begin to spark much moreinterest in owning that much land and the possibilities. And before I go intodetailed land issues I thought I would face I want to bring up the real concernthat is making me shy away from the property but not the area.


Being the last house on the block, I am the FIRST house in defense.Not just from critters and snakes and fires, but from the people out cruisingaround in the hills, or using the dirt road to connect back over to Santa RosaMine Rd. In our evening stroll I felt a strong sense of insecurity beingexposed to watchful eyes that may or may not be in those fields/hills/roads.The property does not have any tall fencing keeping eyes OUT and OFF of theproperty. Being in the HOA, and being my first home, putting up a 6-8’ fencewould be an expense and most likely not fly with the HOA. With some of theexpensive toys and tools I have compiled over the years, I fear leaving mystuff in a work shop in the middle of the property open to prying eyes. As soonas we started thinking about our possessions our minds quickly raced to ourcompanions, and their safety. He wasrecently married and I am soon to be, and besides providing happiness and arelationship to our mates, safety is FIRST priority! She can be happy 2ndto me knowing she is safe when she comes home late one night and there are "people" just taking that dirt road that see a pretty female getting inand out of her car or garage. She thinks I am paranoid, but sitting in theshadows last night on the edge of the property where foot traffic wouldtraverse, I realized it would be impossible to notice who is out in that fieldand where.


I am distraught over this, and thought I was going there toconvince myself I could handle the land, but now have other worries. Dogs, spotlights, a security fence running 2/3s of the property line, a front gate andgarage attached to the house would really help settle my fears. If I could movejust 1 house inward, I would not have had ANY of these ideas or fears pop up.The area out there is remote, we like that, we understand that and look forwardto it; but this wide open space leave me and my family vulnerable I feel, andthat must be why this jewel of aproperty has been on the market for so long.


When I spoke with the neighbor across the street, she didn’tseem to mind that they were on the edge of the “wilderness”, but at the sametime she tells me about the gas theft problem and how they went to greatlengths to even drop the gas tank toget to it. If thieves, prying eyes, and who know what can be in the front yardof a house long enough to do things like that: what worse could we encounterhaving more desirable items and an attractive young family.


I don’t mean to write a novel, but home buying is a HUGEstep in my life and we don’t want to move from house to house to work our wayup into that community/area and want to stay put where we buy. The housesfurther in towards Cajalco just go up in price, and or the land is un-useable.I don’t want to give up on this property yet, but security is now my concernand fencing in, putting up shrubs, and protecting what is mine is going to be 1ston the list if we do buy.

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