Tag Archives: would you move to Dickinson North Dakota

Banks Don’t Want To Lend, Or Own Property In Dickinson, And It Is Causing Real Estate Prices To Fall

Banks in Dickinson, North Dakota do not want to loan money on property, and end up owning property in Dickinson, and it is causing real estate prices to fall.  No matter what people in Dickinson say or think about the economy in Dickinson remaining steady or improving, the Banks think the opposite, as demonstrated by their current lending practices.

The Banks don’t want to loan money on property in Dickinson because of the following doubts about Dickinson:

  • The Banks believe that real estate prices in Dickinson will continue to fall.
  • The Banks do not want to have loans on properties that are depreciating, which people would walk away from when they owe the Bank more money than their home is worth.
  • The Banks believe that the economy in Dickinson will continue to decline, with fewer jobs, lay-offs, businesses closing, and wage rates continually decreasing.
  • The Banks do not want to loan money based on people’s income history in Dickinson, because they believe that many people will lose their job, be unable to find another job, and their wage rates will continually decrease.
  • The Banks believe that people in Dickinson will default on their home loans, because they will get laid-off, be unable to find another job, their wage rates will drop, or they will find out that they owe more money on their home than it is worth as its value depreciates.
  • The Banks believe that they will likely end up owning many properties in Dickinson because of people defaulting on their mortgages.  The Banks believe that these properties will be depreciating in value greatly, they will be unable to find qualified replacement buyers, and the Bank will be responsible for paying insurance and high property taxes on these properties for many years.

In order to not have problems, the Banks are trying to not lend money on houses in Dickinson, because they don’t want to end up owning many, many houses in Dickinson.

The Banks don’t care, that the depreciation of home values that they are so worried about, they are perhaps the primary cause of this right now.

I will give two quick examples of home buyers who were willing to pay the seller’s asking price, but the Banks would not loan money to any of the buyers, so the home price dropped 10% to 20% in less than one year.

A friend of mine who has lived in Dickinson for 35 years, currently owns a home with $20,000 remaining on his mortgage.  I believe his current mortgage payments are $300 per month or less.  He is single, and a couple of years ago he no longer had to make child support payments of $700 per month or more on his two children, as they are now grown.  He has worked at the same company for over eight years, and his take home pay after all taxes is at least $3,000 per month. He owns several vehicles, which are paid for.

He agreed to purchase a neighboring house for $134,000, which was less than the current appraised value.  He thought that he would have no problem getting a mortgage for this house, based on his income, his employment history, his large equity in his current home, and having no car payments, credit card debt, or other debt.  But the Banks in Dickinson denied him a home loan.

If you use an on-line mortgage payment calculator, the mortgage payment for the $134,000 house would be less than $900 per month, plus his current mortgage payment is $300 per month.  For a single male with $3,000 per month income after all taxes, with no other debts, why couldn’t he afford $1,200 per month total for home payments?

The Banks did not want to make a home loan to him with payments of less than $900 per month, but for twelve years on his income he had paid nearly this much every month in child support.

Within less than one year, the seller’s asking price for this home that he agreed to buy for $134,000 had dropped to $120,000.

This second story is about my experience.  I own a home in Idaho which is paid for, but I have been working in Dickinson for almost six years.  For about three years, I was a roommate of a home owner in Dickinson, where I paid about $480 per month.  Once the Oil Boom ended, and so many out of state workers returned to where they came from, apartment rents in Dickinson decreased greatly, and I rented an apartment for less than $400 per month.  However, I wanted to get out of this apartment, because I had some bad neighbors.  I saw a very inexpensive manufactured home for sale in Belfield, on its owned land, so this was something that I was interested in buying:

A trucking company in Idaho, that was doing business in North Dakota, wanted to buy housing for three of its truck drivers, so this trucking company purchased a 3-bedroom single-wide manufactured home in Belfield on its owned triple lot, for nearly $50,000 in about 2014.  This trucking company completely furnished this manufactured home with everything from furniture, to appliances, beds, bed linens, cookware, and utensils.

This trucking company in Idaho, no longer does business in North Dakota, so they wanted to get rid of this manufactured home, just like it is, with all of the furnishings.  Six months ago, they were asking $25,000.  I went and looked at it, and it was fine with me.  The property taxes were only about $100 per year.  The mortgage payments, would be much less than I had been paying in rent for the past six years in Dickinson.

I went to or spoke to four or five Banks in Dickinson, and they each had their own excuse for not wanting to lend any money for this manufactured home, such as “We have been instructed to not lend money on any manufactured home whatsoever, no matter how new it is, or how much land is involved.” or “We can not lend money because the land is zoned commercial.”

I thought that this was ridiculous, I have very good credit, this was less money than a new vehicle costs, and the Bank could place a lien against my paid for home in Idaho if they ever needed to collect their money.  I was seriously considering putting this home purchase on my credit card, which has a credit limit of $35,000.

Many other people looked at this manufactured home in Belfield, and tried to buy it, but none of them could get a loan from a Bank.  A few days ago, the real estate agent sent me a text message, stating that the seller’s asking price is now down to $20,000.  This is a 20% price drop in six months.  I would have been happy to pay $25,000 with a home loan from a Bank.

I know one other person in Dickinson now, whose take home pay after taxes is at least $3,000 per month.  He is single, in his forties, and he has been employed with the same company for several years.  He recently applied for a home loan with a Bank in Dickinson, for a home owned by a relative of his who is willing to sell it to him for less than $200,000, even though the appraised value would be closer to $250,000.

This Bank informed him that they would approve him for a mortgage of up to $70,000.  Which means they don’t trust him to be able to make monthly payments of more than $400 per month.  If a single person’s take home pay after taxes is $3,000 per month, why wouldn’t this person be able to afford mortgage payments closer to $1,000 per month, and a mortgage of up to $180,000?

What I am explaining, is that Banks in Dickinson right now are being very restrictive on home loans, because for one thing, they expect home values to decrease.  The funny thing is, these Banks’ lending policies are the primary cause right now for why home values are decreasing.  They won’t loan money even when buyers are willing to pay the sellers’ asking prices.

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The Best Seven Years For Dickinson, North Dakota

In 1996 I moved to Tampa to work for a company as an engineer.  I rented an apartment on Lake Magdelene in north Tampa.  Up until the 1950s, most of north Tampa was hundreds and hundreds of acres of orange groves.  As Tampa grew continually, it pushed northward into these orange groves.

This area of Tampa was very beautiful, or it had been.  There were probably nearly one hundred small lakes, ranging in size from fifty feet across, to Lake Magdelene which was about one mile in length.  Besides citrus trees like orange, tangerine, kumquat, lime, and grapefruit trees; banana trees, palm trees, oak trees, oleanders, dense hedges, ornamental plants, ferns, and flowers filled these middle class and upper middle class neighborhoods.

By the time that I moved to Tampa in 1996, Hillsborough County had grown to nearly one million people.  At this moment in time, the character of Tampa was about to change significantly.  The area north of Tampa, the orange groves and small lakes, was almost completely developed.  These very traditional, beautiful, comfortable suburban neighborhoods that had been built from the 1960s through the 1990s were done.

An unbelievable and unprecedented amount of new development began in what was called “New Tampa”, to the north west, on the west side of Interstate 75.  On the west side of Interstate 75, there were thousands of acres of cattle pasture and swamp land, this became “New Tampa”.

Every housing development in New Tampa was a “gated community”.  You exited Interstate 75 onto Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, and drove west until you reached the entrance to the gated community in which you lived, turned in, and drove through the entrance past the guard house and gate.  This entrance was the only way in, and the only way out.  Each gated community was surrounded by a combination of walls, earth berms, and tall hedges.

Besides being protected behind the walls, earth berms, and gates, or you could look at it as being a prisoner, which was often the case when you tried to leave in the morning during rush hour, these gated communities featured “McMansion” architecture.  “McMansion” architecture is where cheap construction methods and cheap materials are used to create intentionally tall entry ways and high roof peaks, to make a home look enormous and expensive.

I believed that I had arrived in Tampa about twenty years too late.  On weekends when I was living on Lake Magdalene, I would ride my bicycle through these beautiful thirty year old neighborhoods, with quiet tree lined streets, natural lakes in the backyards, community tennis courts, and small orange groves here and there.

In these thirty year old neighborhoods, everyone knew everyone on that street, and the next streets over.  Husbands and wives bought one of these houses when they were in their thirties, and stayed there even after their kids moved out, they retired, and became old.

Some of these houses were large five bedroom, three bathroom houses, but most of these houses were modest and unpretentious.  Due to the economy and nature of Tampa, with large corporations, an international airport, McDill AFB, international sea port, and professional sports teams, neighbors would have been doctors, lawyers, engineers, airline pilots, military officers, ship captains, or professional athletes.

For adults in these neighborhoods, especially the wives, it would have been very enjoyable to be able to socialize with so many other adults with similar education, professional level, income level, interests, and values.  Parents in these neighborhoods did not have to worry very much about where their kids were, because all of the parents watched all of these kids.

After school, and in the summer, the kids in these neighborhoods, could have gone swimming, fishing, canoeing, water skiing, sailing, or played tennis.  I don’t think there would be any question that each of these kids was expecting and planning on going to college, because that is what all of the other kids did, and that is what everyone’s parents had done.  There would not have been aimless, depressed, self-destructive, drug addict, hoodlum kids around.

So I would have liked to have been either a kid or an adult living in one of these middle class neighborhoods in north Tampa from 1960 to 1990.  I think that I would have been happier as a kid or an adult living among peers with the same interests, values, beliefs, and goals, in this warm, safe, beautiful environment, doing things that I like to do.  But after 1990, no way, Tampa became too huge and overwhelming.

I want to point out, that these middle class adults who lived in Tampa from 1960 through 1990, with their education, professionalism, values, beliefs, interests, and goals, they caused Tampa to thrive, and double in size.  Though these adults created and loved their quiet, peaceful, happy, suburban neighborhoods on the north side of Tampa, the growth that they caused, changed the character of Tampa, to something that they would not have liked, the “gated communities” with the “McMansions”.  However, they would have acknowledged there was no way to be able to stop this, it was inevitable.

I also want to point out, that the kids who grew up in these beautiful, safe, fun, middle class neighborhoods on the north side of Tampa, where everyone’s parents went to college, and everyone was going to go to college, that these kids were so solidly grounded, that I think that they could do O.K. living anywhere.  What I mean is, I think these kids all turned out so well due to the constant positive influence of their peers and the other parents, that I think these kids as adults could cope with living in an unpleasant city or urban area.  ( I base this belief on my experiences attending the University of Florida on a campus with what was then 35,000 students, where some students thrived and some students could not cope, not because of intelligence level, but because of their backgrounds.)

When I was living in Flagstaff, Arizona, which I loved, I also felt that I arrived there twenty to thirty years too late.  To save time, I could say that everything about Flagstaff was wonderful.  However, beginning in about year 2000, real estate prices began to skyrocket.  And from what I have been told, growth has just continued non-stop to this day, making not just the price of real estate a problem, but now over development is a problem too.

The best, most enjoyable years to live in Flagstaff, were probably the 1960s through the 1990s.  The town, the forests, the mountains, the beauty, the lifestyle, the people, the weather were all so enjoyable, that this is what led to real estate skyrocketing, and the over development.  It was just inevitable.

Finally, getting to what this blog post was supposed to be about, “The Best Seven Years For Dickinson, North Dakota.”  From 2007 through 2014, there was an Oil Boom in Dickinson, North Dakota.  Though there was an “Exploration Boom” in North Dakota in the 1950s, and there was a “Gas Price Oil Boom” in North Dakota in the 1970s, this most recent oil boom has had the most significant and greatest impact on Dickinson.

How can I say that 2007 through 2014 was “The Best Seven Years For Dickinson” ?  To begin, prior to 2007, the average hourly wage in Dickinson was probably about $8 per hour, with no opportunity to work overtime.  There were very few job openings, and very few opportunities to get a higher paying job.  There was no way for most Dickinson residents to get ahead financially.  It would have been difficult for most Dickinson residents to even be able to save enough money to get out of Dickinson and try to move some place else.

In addition to there being mostly only low paying jobs, with very few opportunities to get a higher paying job, everything in Dickinson was controlled.  The wealthy families in Dickinson, and the influential families in Dickinson, controlled who got hired, who got fired, who got a promotion, who got demoted, who got recognition, who got blame, who got arrested, who was not prosecuted, who got a home loan, who got a car loan, who was evicted, and so forth.

When the Oil Boom began in 2007, it was almost like the Dickinson residents were released from bondage.  There was such a demand for workers in the oil field, that any able bodied person in Dickinson could get a job immediately for at least $16 per hour, which is about twice the average hourly pay of $8 per hour, plus, they might be allowed to work as much as 40 hours of overtime each week.

Some Dickinson residents, who were in their forties, who had always been kept down in Dickinson, always receiving low pay, never getting a promotion, never being able to get a better job, never being able to get a home loan, all of a sudden went from making $320 per week, to making $2,000 per week.  And for once, there was no wealthy or influential family in Dickinson who could stop them.

When the Oil Boom began, a graduating high school student who would not have been able to find a job in Dickinson, could now get a job earning as much as $1,400 per week working in the oil field.  A graduating high school student who would have had no car, and had to live with his parents, could now get a job working in the oil field, buy a very nice truck, and rent their own apartment.

Once the Oil Boom began in Dickinson, young couples were each able to obtain good employment, get married, and buy their own home.  Older couples were each able to obtain good employment, pay off their credit card debt, pay off their car loans, and pay off their home loans.

Due to families in Dickinson owning farms, or having retained mineral rights, oil well lease signing checks and revenue checks, began earning many families in Dickinson thousands or tens of thousands of dollars each month.  Farmers purchased completely new farm equipment, trucks, and travel trailers.  Some families dispersed this monthly oil revenue money to their children and grandchildren.  Many family members in Dickinson receiving oil revenue money purchased new vehicles, motorcycles, travel trailers, did home remodels, or paid for their kids to go to college.

Due to the amount of oil field work in and around Dickinson, many new large warehouse buildings were built, new office buildings were built, new restaurants were built, a new shopping center was built.  About five new hotels and fifteen new apartment buildings were built.  Local land owners, real estate agents, and construction companies made money on these new building projects.  Some local residents started and grew their own oil field service companies and construction companies.

During this Oil Boom, the City of Dickinson was able to build one of the nicest recreation centers in the World.  It has two indoor swimming pools, one outdoor swimming pool, skateboard park, ice skating rink, two indoor tennis courts, three indoor racketball courts, four indoor basketball courts, one volleyball court, indoor golf simulator, rock climbing wall, indoor track, cardiovascular equipment area, weight lifting gym, aerobics studios, and child day care.

The City of Dickinson was able to build a new Police Department, have a new water tower, pave many roads, widen roads, add stop lights, build a new school, and have a new County Fairground.

Would I have wanted to be in Dickinson from 2007 through 2014?  Yes, I would have, especially if I would have been a resident of Dickinson.  I was in Dickinson on and off from 2011 until now in 2018.

Unlike my story about getting to Tampa too late, where Tampa kept growing and growing, or my story about getting to Flagstaff too late where Flagstaff kept growing and growing, I got to Dickinson too late, because Dickinson is contracting.

In my stories about Tampa and Flagstaff, conditions in these towns were so good, that it was inevitable that they would grow.  In Dickinson, conditions are so bad, that it is seems inevitable that Dickinson will decline.

One of the reasons why I am writing this particular blog post, and the way that I am writing it, is because the people in Dickinson do not know that 2007 to 2014 will likely be the best years that Dickinson has ever had, or will have.  I began with the two stories about Tampa and Flagstaff, to explain the inevitability of places changing, even if you do not want them to go in the direction that they are going in.

In the case of Tampa, there was so much continued growth because of the regional economy, low cost of living, good climate, recreation, entertainment, night life, fine dining, shopping, professional football, professional baseball, professional hockey, international airport, international sea port, U.S. Central Command McDill AFB, and the University of South Florida.

In Flagstaff, the continued growth had nothing to do with the regional economy or cost of living, neither of which are very good, it was the beauty of the town, the Coconino National Forest, the snow skiing, trail hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, the clear blue skies during the winter, the nightlife, friendly downtown, diverse and well educated population, low crime and no riff-raff hoodlums.

In Dickinson, after the Oil Boom ended in 2015, many of the oil field jobs went away, many oil field workers returned to the states where they came from, and subsequently other jobs went away in other areas of the economy.  The amount of oil field jobs continue to decrease, as do other jobs in other areas of the economy in Dickinson.  As there are fewer jobs in Dickinson, and a greater supply of workers than demand for workers, we are seeing the wage rates steadily decrease in Dickinson.

As there are fewer oil field jobs, fewer jobs in other areas, and wage rates are decreasing, the old practices of nepotism, favoritism, discrimination, prejudice, and exclusion in hiring, promotion, lay offs, and home lending are beginning to emerge again in Dickinson.

The people in Dickinson are unfriendly, the Police in Dickinson are encouraging people to leave Dickinson, the Police in Dickinson are discouraging people from going out at night, the restaurants are not very good, the restaurant servers are not very nice, there is shortage of women, there is scarcity of attractive women, the real estate prices are high, the real estate prices are likely to fall, there is too much crime in Dickinson, little entertainment, few recreation activities, and it is cold and grey for about seven months of the year in Dickinson.

The population of Dickinson is decreasing, Dickinson is contracting, and this is just going to continue.  The people in Dickinson refuse to see this or acknowledge this.  Some people believe the Oil Boom will come back.

In order for Dickinson to not contract, Dickinson would have to be a place where people would want to move, and stay.  Here are some changes that would be needed:

  • The Police in Dickinson need to find a way to stop the crime and drug dealing in Dickinson, without following, surveilling, and stopping non-criminal, law abiding people.
  • The Police in Dickinson need to find a way to allow adults to go out to restaurants and sports bars at night to socialize, without following, surveilling, and stopping them on their way home.
  • The people in Dickinson need to stop being mean and nasty to other people in general, and to cease nepotism, favoritism, prejudice, discrimination, and exclusion in hiring, firing, promotion, and bank lending.
  • The people in Dickinson need to stop being out-of-their minds as far as real estate prices in Dickinson.
  • The banks in Dickinson need to grant home loans to people who demonstrate that they can make the mortgage payments.
  • The restaurants in Dickinson need to stop using jaded, rough, mean drug addict women as servers, especially the ones from Spokane, Seattle, and Coeur D’Alene.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that promotes health, such as hygiene, exercise, and fitness, and discourages smoking, tobacco, illegal drugs, over use of alcohol, and over eating.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that promotes education, awareness, and spirituality, and discourages ignorance, hate, and Catholicism.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that encourages women to be beautiful and friendly, and discourages women from being ugly, glaring, and scowling.
  • Dickinson might need to have a strip bar, just so men can see what women are supposed to look like, maybe they have never seen one, or they have forgotten what they look like.
  • Dickinson needs to have a good Italian restaurant.

I Wouldn’t Go Out In Dickinson On A Dare, Or If You Paid Me

I wouldn’t go out in Dickinson, North Dakota at night, on a dare, or if you paid me.  My experiences living in Dickinson for nearly six years have taught me that you do not go out at night in Dickinson.

I have had so many bad experiences going out in Dickinson at night, even just to get something to eat, go to the grocery store or WalMart, that I know not to do it.  From what I see, 95% of everyone else in Dickinson feels the same way, they won’t go out at night in Dickinson.

The number one reason or cause for people not wanting to go out at night in Dickinson, is the City of Dickinson Police.  The City of Dickinson Police have been so aggressive in scrutinizing, surveilling, stalking, following, tail gaiting, stopping, and questioning people at night in Dickinson, even when they are just going to the grocery store or WalMart, that people don’t even want to leave their homes at night.

If you aren’t doing anything wrong, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about?  No, that’s not how it works.  The City of Dickinson Police want to find something to charge you with, so they will ask you questions about what you are doing, where you are going, have you had any alcohol to drink, do you have any weapons in your vehicle, and more.  You are going to have to explain yourself to their satisfaction, while they try to find something wrong with your driver’s license, registration, proof of insurance, vehicle, vehicle contents, your activities, your attitude, and other things.

The City of Dickinson Police have gotten people so conditioned to being scrutinized, followed, and stopped at night, that fewer, and fewer, and fewer people go out at night, to the point that Villard Street, the main thoroughfare through town, is just about completely vacant.

Because the streets in Dickinson are so completely vacant at night, when a vehicle does enter a street at night, the Dickinson Police automatically assume that this person must be a law-breaker and up to no good, because no one is supposed to be out at night, no one is allowed out at night.

The second most common reason why people do not go out in Dickinson at night, is why would you?  If you went to the drive through of Arby’s, Wendy’s, or Taco Bell in Dickinson, the food and the service that you get, would be equal to what you would find anywhere else in the United States.  And this is about as good as it gets for dining in Dickinson.  For something better than fast food, you could order take-out from Upin Thai.

But going inside a fast food restaurant in Dickinson at night, or any restaurant in Dickinson at night, you are most likely going to find blue collar male workers from the oil field or construction.  If you have worked in Dickinson for two years, three years, six years, all day, every day with blue collar male workers, do you want to spend any more time with them?

I will say, that at the fast food restaurants in Dickinson, there are some young girls who work there, who are nice, cute, attractive, silly, funny, and entertaining, but you can’t or shouldn’t bother them too much while they are working.

If you go to a sit down restaurant in Dickinson with waitresses, if you are a normal adult who has lived in Dickinson for a few years, you know from experience that these waitresses are from Coeur D’Alene, Seattle, or Spokane.  They and their boyfriend were drug addicts who could not get a job or keep a job where they were living, so they came to Dickinson.  They are shitty, callous, jaded human beings, who just want to get high on meth or heroin.  Knowing this, would you want to go out to eat at restaurant in Dickinson, or would you rather stay home?

I Am Again Recommending That Men Go Look At The “Escort of Italy” Website

Almost one year ago, I wrote a blog post article about the “Escort of Italy” website.  This website, and this escort service, is one of the most amazing, fascinating, and impressive things that I have ever seen in my life.

I have lived in Dickinson, North Dakota for about six years, where there is a shortage of women, a scarcity of attractive women, the women who are here are mean and nasty, and prostitution is not allowed.  When I look at the “Escort of Italy” website, I can’t believe that such a thing exists, but it’s true.

Before I go any further, and provide any links to this website, I need to caution everyone, that you will see nudity on this website.  Because of the cultural difference, and acceptance of prostitution in Italy, when you are on this escort website, if you click on any of the women’s photographs, it will give you the age, height, weight, and nationality of each woman, and what she is willing to do sexually.

To save you some time, if you want to see the largest number of escorts at once, click on the tab for “Travel Girls”.  Click on the escort named “Rozy Model”, for instance.  She might be the girl that I would ask for.  That’s what you do, you pick and ask for the girl that you want.  The “Travel Girls” are more expensive, I think that you have to pre-pay for a large amount of time and pay travel expenses.  The other escorts in the towns of Milan, Rome, and Florence are almost as pretty, and they cost about $250 per hour.

Here is a short excerpt from the “Escort of Italy” website.  If you click on any of the differently colored text in this excerpt, it takes you to this website:

“You are welcome to our high class escort agency Italy, offering you the best female escorts Italy for hotel or private dating, exclusive girlfriend experience, travel and vacation escort with charming Italia girls, VIP escort girls Italy for business occasions and many more. If you are looking for pleasure and comfort, then you have come to the right place. Our elegant Italy escorts will meet the most subtle expectations of a lonely man who is eager to find love and companionship in Italia. We offer our clients the finest attractive escorts in Milan, escort girls Rome, and Turin escorts. Our Italy escort agency provide both incall and outcall services for the guests and residents of the country.”

It kills me, that rather than suffering through living in Dickinson, like being in prison, for only $250 each week, I could look forward to being with “Rozy Model” or “Fiona”.  I suppose it could be worse, I could be living in North Korea.

I Get Asked, “Do You Like Living In Dickinson?”

Today I was asked, “Do you like living in Dickinson?”  In order to not be mean and unfriendly, I usually say, “I can make more money in Dickinson right now, than I can back in Idaho, but it has been difficult.”

Usually, I will give one or two examples of how it has been difficult.  Today I said, “In the apartment building where I live in downtown Dickinson, there is a lot of noise, fighting, drug dealing, and theft.  I wish that I was back a my own house, where I didn’t have to deal with neighbors like this.”

If I were to tell the truth, it would be something like this, “With the shortage of women, lack of attractive women, unfriendly women in restaurants and bars, and the Police trying to stop everyone they can, living in Dickinson has been like being in prison.”

Most of the time, when local people ask me how I like living in Dickinson, from the way that they act when they ask me, it appears that they are expecting me to say how nice it is, or how great it is.  This is one of the reasons why I sometimes write that the people in Dickinson are not even aware that Dickinson is any different from anywhere else.

I have tried to come up with a way, at least in my mind, to quickly sum up how Dickinson, North Dakota is different than the area of Idaho where I had been living.  The most important thing that I could say about the area of Idaho where I had been living, was that it was very “Progress” oriented.

What I mean by “Progress” oriented, is that anything that was accomplished that was good, it was appreciated, celebrated, or valued.  For instance, a new house being built, a new barn being built, a road being paved, a new Doctor moving to town, a new Dentist moving to town, someone’s kid graduating from college, someone’s kid becoming an engineer, someone’s kid becoming a lawyer, all of these types of things were appreciated, celebrated, and valued.

The reason why, was because the people believed that when these things happened, everyone was making progress, things were improving, things were getting better, these were signs of success, people are prospering.

Another reason why accomplishments, especially other people’s accomplishments, were appreciated, celebrated, and valued, was the belief that surely these things will help and benefit all of us.

The area of Idaho where I had been living, was about 60% to 70% Mormon.  Idaho has more Mormons in total, and more Mormons per-capita, than Utah does.  The Mormons are very “Progress” and “Results” oriented.  What this is like, is that Mormons want other people to do well and prosper, and together everyone can do well and prosper.

Just like in every religion or culture, there are some members that don’t do what they are supposed to be practicing, but in general, the Mormon idea that everyone can do well together, is something that you can see working when you live in a Mormon community.

If you don’t want to believe what I am writing, you can read the book by Blaine Lee titled, “The Power Principle, How To Influence With Honor.”  Blaine Lee was a Mormon, and an associate of another Mormon named Stephen Covey who wrote the very famous book titled “The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People”.

When I read Blaine Lee’s book “The Power Principle, How To Influence With Honor” when I was about 27 years old, it changed the way I thought and behaved.  At first, I had a hard time believing what Blaine Lee was teaching, that one of the best and most important ways that you can be successful, was to get out of other people’s way and help other people to be successful.

I am not going to dwell on this principle right now, but this really works.  Especially in the work place, you would be amazed to see how much “Progress” and “Results” can be made by getting out of co-workers or subordinates way, and helping them to be successful.

For instance, this is a really good example, when I was a construction superintendent and a construction project manager at a very young age, I would talk to the foremen to see how they wanted to handle something, and then say O.K., that’s a good idea.  When I asked them what they thought, and what they wanted to do, and they came up with solutions, and I said that’s a good idea go ahead, most of the time, everybody started coming up with their own solutions to problems.

The big change that occurred, was soon, there weren’t really any problems on any of my construction projects, the work moved right along.  The laborers saw a problem or difficulty approaching, and they thought of their own solution, because they were allowed to, they were encouraged to, they felt empowered, they felt like they were freed to do their work.  The same thing happened for the foremen, and the superintendents.  They were allowed to come up with their own solutions and implement them, so they did.

Who would have thought, that just getting out of people’s way, and helping them to be successful, would help me?  My projects went so well, that I was promoted to project manager, received higher pay, received large bonuses, got a new company Jeep Cherokee to drive, and I was specifically requested by company owners for difficult projects.

To reiterate, the Mormons, the culture of Idaho where I had been living, was very “Progress” and “Results” oriented.  Where achievement and accomplishments, especially other people’s accomplishments, were appreciated, valued, and celebrated, because there was the belief that these things improved life for everyone.

In contrast, in Dickinson, and western North Dakota, people act like they hate each other, people act like if someone else fails, that this helps them succeed.  And, if someone else succeeds, this makes them fail.

This is why in Dickinson and western North Dakota, people do not cooperate with each other, co-workers do not cooperate with each other, co-workers undermine each other, co-workers withhold information, workers try to find something about their co-workers to fault them for or use against them.

Just recently, which I wrote about in a previous blog post, another contractor got one of their work trucks stuck on a job site.  I let them borrow my personal tow strap and tow rope, helped them hook up the trucks, got them to try a different way when it didn’t work, and was ready to get the site owner to come down with their front end loader.  When I realized that I was the only other person left at the site that day, I was figuring on having to use the front end loader myself.  However, I was informed the following day, that if I had used the loader, I would have been fired immediately.

I am repeating this story, because in the past, I saw that work got accomplished much better when people came up with their own solutions to problems, and were allowed to solve work site problems.  When you start being nasty to people who dare to come up with solutions to problems that arise on the work site, people will revert back to standing around, waiting, not doing anything, not offering information, not offering solutions that they know of, because they are scared of getting in trouble.

So, in Dickinson, this is not a culture of “Progress” or “Results”, it is a culture of trying to keep other people down, keep other people in their place, and someone else accomplishing something or succeeding, is seen as being detrimental.  This is one of the reasons why people in Dickinson hate people with a college education so much, they see someone else’s accomplishments, as being detrimental to them.

Would I Buy A House In Dickinson, North Dakota At This Time?

Would I buy a house in Dickinson, North Dakota at this time?  My answer is that I personally would only buy a house in Dickinson at this time, if it were less than $80,000.  There are several reasons for this, and I will explain these reasons.

First reason, though the housing prices in Dickinson, North Dakota have come down some since the oil boom ended in 2015, most houses are still priced too high.  I believe that in the next several years, house prices in Dickinson will drop by about 20%.  It would not be a very good idea to buy an expensive, over-priced home in Dickinson at this time, because house prices are going to continue to decrease.

Second reason, this happened before in Dickinson during the second oil boom that occurred from approximately 1978 to 1983, that housing prices shot up, then fell once the oil boom ended.  However, the assessed property values determined by the tax assessor remained at their peak values for years following the end of the second oil boom, in order for the City and the County to cover the amount of money they had spent on infrastructure improvements during the oil boom.

In other words, if you buy an expensive, over-priced home in Dickinson at this time, you can expect your assessed property value for property taxes to remain at its peak value for years and years to come.  Who wants to pay high property taxes?

Third reason, it is possible that there could continue to be job losses in Dickinson, decreasing wage rates, and people moving away.  More home vacancies, fewer jobs, and lower paying jobs, mean housing prices will continue to fall.  Also, who will be able to buy a house, and how much money will they be able to afford?  You would have a much better chance of being able to sell your house at the low price range, or rent out your house at the low price range, which is why you do not want to buy an expensive house in Dickinson.

The other thing that I need to say about buying an $80,000 house in Dickinson, is that the immediate area of the house would have to meet certain conditions.  In Dickinson on the north side of Villard Street and the south side of Villard Street, and on the south side of the railroad tracks, there are old residential blue collar neighborhoods, where some of the older smaller wood frame houses are in the $80,000 price range.

On some city blocks in Dickinson, though the houses are older and smaller, the residents all take pride in their homes and their yards.  If you were to purchase an old small inexpensive home on this city block, you might not have to worry too much about noise, theft, and illegal drug activity.

However, on some city blocks in Dickinson, the battle has already been lost.  A few neglected houses have become rental houses, or subdivided rental units.  You would likely have a constant turnover of low income neighbors.  People who do not have good sense, or know or care about right and wrong.  Loud ghetto music at all hours, yelling, fighting, illegal drug activity, traffic at all hours, and theft and vandalism to your home and your property.

Another way to say it, you would be looking in a nice neighborhood, for the absolutely least expensive house, maybe the house that doesn’t even look like it belongs with the other houses.

Because I expect readers to disagree with me, that there are no $80,000 houses for sale in Dickinson, North Dakota, here is a listing for a 2br/2ba house for $65,000:

DCIM101MEDIA

It Seems Like Reckless Drivers Never Get Caught In Dickinson, North Dakota

On Thursday of this week, I was at a stop sign in downtown Dickinson getting ready to make a right turn onto Villard Street and drive west, when two motorcycles went by going 80 mph to 100 mph travelling east.

I came to a complete stop, as did one westbound car on Villard Street, one eastbound car on Villard Street, one truck that was just entering Villard Street from the south, and one woman walking her dog.  We all couldn’t believe it, and we all stopped expecting there to be some kind of a crash.

I could see that the two motorcycles slowed down some when they got to the intersection at 10th Avenue East.  There was no crash, this time.

I don’t see how people who ride motorcycles like this, live for even one week, or how they even still exist.  I sincerely believe that they don’t need to exist, and that the World would be a much better place without them.

The 25 mph to 35 mph section of Villard Street through downtown Dickinson is probably the most dangerous place to drive 80 mph to 100 mph.  Vehicles driving on Villard Street or entering Villard Street do not expect anyone to be driving this fast, and they couldn’t see or react to a motorcycle going this fast anyway.

It’s not a very good thing to have someone who is suicidal driving around Dickinson, but it is much worse that they could likely kill, cripple, or severely injure someone else who was just merely going to the grocery store or driving home from work to be with their family.

The Police in Dickinson would be able to do very little in the moment of watching a motorcycle go this fast past them, they would be unable to catch up to them.  All they could do would be to try to identify the helmet of the rider, his jacket, the color of the motorcycle, and anything unusual about the faring, gas tank, or something else.  Then, contact other Dickinson Police and Highway Patrol to see where the motorcycle goes or turns off.

In the neighborhood where I live downtown, there is a house down the street where some of these reckless drivers originate.  Sometimes they take four wheelers out and drive about 50 mph on the 25 mph streets.  Again, they never seem to get caught by the Dickinson Police.  I don’t even know how the Dickinson Police could catch up to them in this residential area.

Tonight, at the apartment building where I live in downtown Dickinson, there was something like a small red Nissan, Mitsubishi, or Hyundai that has been lowered and has a belled-out exhaust, that went for a high speed drive around the neighborhood.  It drove about 60 mph for four blocks going north, then four or five blocks west, then five blocks south, then back here.  This took about three minutes, and I could hear this car the whole time.

I didn’t know that this car was coming back here, but when they got back into the apartment building parking lot and revved the car engine, I was very angry.  I didn’t like listening to this car that was way too loud, and I didn’t like them driving recklessly in this neighborhood.  Many of the four way intersections in this neighborhood do not have stop signs because they expect people to be driving slowly and to yield.

If I would have gone down there, because these people are already stupid assholes who I don’t even think should exist or live here, the situation would have escalated to where I was the one who would be arrested by the Police and subsequently be evicted.  The Dickinson Police will never ever catch these people driving recklessly through Dickinson, but if I were to do something to them, I would be arrested, be evicted, and lose my job.

In order to not be in a situation like this, I shouldn’t live in a town with so many white trash and criminals, it is certain there will be conflicts.