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Our final choice:  Homer, Alaska!!!
Bottom Line:        We found a place that met 90%
of all of our criteria

Location Criteria

% met




100 Not too hot - under 85 degrees in summer Avg. summer temps. 60F-75F
  0 Not too cold - over 32 degrees in winter Avg. winter temps. 20F to -20F


80 Near small or mid-size city Homer is a very small, but incredibly diverse town
  100 Significant community involvement regarding the environment, conservation and politics Incredible commitment to the environment
  100 Abundance of natural beauty One of the most beautiful places we have visited
  100 Near to water and/or mountains Magnificent mountains, glaciers and Kachemak Bay off of the Pacific Ocean
  50 Possible for wind and/or solar power There are studies going on currently to determine feasibility of both in the area.
  100 Loads of outdoor activities Sailing, Kayaking, hiking, cross-country skiing, dog-sledding, bicycling, fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing
  100 Airport close by Homer has it's own airport and floatplane lake


80 Access to theater, cinema, art galleries and artistic activities such as festivals Many cultural activities, small cinema with several film festivals

Access to Reputable Health Facilities

30 Would like to be within 100 miles of a major cancer center Small hospital, but no cancer center.  Anchorage is the closest one about 220 miles away

Avg. % of Location Criteria Met


Essential House Characteristics

% met



Interior design 100 Open plan design or can be remodeled to open-plan  
Size 100 1500-200 sq. ft. 2000 sq. ft.
Bedroom 100 3 or more bedrooms or 2 bedrooms and 1 off/den 2 bedrooms and small apt.
Bathrooms 100 1 1/2 or 2 bathrooms or more  
Lot size 100 1/4 -1/2 acre lot with mature trees (if larger, most should be wooded and unimproved) 2 acres with about 1 acre cleared
Surroundings 100 Natural privacy Lots of lovely spruce trees, a small creek and incredibly beautiful fireweed flowers
Cost 80 Low cost but able to add value

Wanted to spend under $300K.  Slightly exceeded cost, but all furniture and appliances were included

Services 100 Cellular phone service  
  100 High speed internet service available

DSL available with phone service

Exterior design 100 Contemporary design  
Optional (but highly desirable) 100 Wood siding  
  100 High pitch roof  
  100 Cathedral ceiling  
  100 South Facing lot and house Faces southeast to southwest
  100 Gas heating  
  100 Garage  
  100 Mountain and/or water view Both mountain and water and also 2 glaciers
  100 Sunny Lot  
  60 Within 1/2 to 3/4 hour to city Short drive, but Homer is not really a city.  It is 200 miles to Anchorage
  60 Within 1/2 hour to university Small college here
  100 Close to small store for items such as bread, milk, newspapers 2 miles away - can easily bike
  80 Flat area for walking and bicycling mostly flat with some small hills
  100 Bike trails Several bike trails in town with one scheduled to be extended out to our location

Near to park

Several small parks in town, beach

 Avg. %  of House Criteria Met


Undesirable Characteristics

100 Low Violent Crime Rate Some petty crime and thefts

No High traffic flow and noise

With a population of about 5,000, and most living in city, virtually no traffic
  100 Houses not close together There is some congestion of houses in the city limits, but most lots are about 1-2 acres
  100 Abundance of mature trees Loads of trees
  100 Not a new House This house was built in 1987

 Avg. %  of Criteria Met