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Hot Rods Considering living in an old service station....

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by BigO, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. Truck64
    Joined: Oct 18, 2015
    Posts: 4,117

    from Ioway

    I know a real estate agent who lives in one, corner lot, it was built back when small stations were sprinkled around town, they were in residential neighborhoods. Budget concerns or consolidation shut them down. Has a single really long garage/bay, and a fallout shelter in the basement too, he said the cops used that as an informal pistol range or somesuch. A "bell tower" sticks up above the roof, to dry hoses I guess.
    BigO and loudbang like this.
  2. brasscarguy
    Joined: Jun 12, 2010
    Posts: 183

    from seattle

    We bought a small 1939 house on acreage out in the country. The property slopes down front to back . The drop is about 60 feet.

    Before I remodeled the house, I built my shop. A 5000 sq ft pole building. After I got bids for the shop building, I asked how much to build a 2nd story. After some engineering and consultation the bid was about 1/3 the coast of the original bid.

    Now I decided go for it. I had some extra pinning and larger floor joists added for strength. Got the engineer to sign off on weight per sq feet. So no I know how much I can put upstairs weight wise. Parked correctly and spaced out I can park 10 cars on the 2nd floor

    So I ended up with a drive down to the lower floor. Then a nearly level drive up to the 2nd floor. I park my cars upstairs and on the lower level is my machine shop, paint booth and general parts storage. Also my restoration shop is on the the lower level.

    Being in the automotive service business we generate a lot of used motor oil annually which I use to to heat the entire shop with a hi efficient used motor oil furnace. I use about 1500 gallons per year and leave the furnace on from October thru May. The temperature is set at 69 degrees. I added lots of insulation and in the summer it never gets above 70 degrees.

    Some day when I am no longer restoring cars I will move all the rolling stock down to the lower level. When we built the building I planned on making an apartment on the upper level so we framed future windows, also roughed in plumbing and wiring stubbed in. Just have to frame the walls, cut the windows and finish it off. Also added a sprinkler system for both floors at the time of construction.

    The best of all worlds. Because the property slopes down my 2 story metal pole building can not be seen from the road in front of my house. The privacy is perfect and with a 7' fence and gates surrounding the house and around the back of the building its works out perfectly.

    Because I am out in the country we classified the building as an agriculture building, our local PUD is required to run 3 phase power at no charge which i took advantage of. They even installed a vault and run the power underground.

    That is how we took a conventional pole building and made it suit our current and future needs.

    just sayin'


    I often pass by an old fire house with lust in my eyes. 2 bays living quarters up stairs, empty and in some disrepair, and NOT for sale., Damn.
  3. Backage
    Joined: Sep 9, 2009
    Posts: 55

    from New York

    loudbang likes this.
  4. albertaboy
    Joined: Jul 19, 2013
    Posts: 131


    El Camino Kid and BigO like this.
  5. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,084

    Hot Rods Ta Hell

    A few years ago my neighborhood Fire Station was replaced by a new mega million dollar replacement a couple miles away. The old 1950's Station about 1/2 mile from me was rezoned residential and auctioned off by the City. I recall it sold far cheaper than what I thought it would. I remember telling my Wife, if this had been 30 years ago and I was single w/o kids...
    Large rollups with tall garage=plenty of space for lifts. Office, lobby, large family room. Industrial style kitchen, large bunkroom and large restroom/shower area. On about 1/2 acre. Small gated parking lot and concreted 360 around building. Large side lot (to park RV, trailer, etc.


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018
    El Camino Kid and BigO like this.

  6. This sounds really interesting and cool.
    How about some pictures?
  7. RacingRoger
    Joined: Sep 11, 2017
    Posts: 196


    Great post! I've been through the entire post, and I never saw a good explanation for the rent only, don't buy opinion. That really has my curiosity piqued; what's the rationale behind renting (most of us assume that's throwing your money away) as opposed to buying (most of us assume that's investing with a chance to get your money back). Just curious, and thanks!
    El Camino Kid and lothiandon1940 like this.
  8. Karrera
    Joined: Jan 19, 2008
    Posts: 170


    There is a 60' x 85' hanger for sale at a local private airport (grass strip) with a 1200 sq ft living area built into one corner. It sits on a 3 acre flat lot with plenty of room to build a small two bedroom Craftsman style bungalow off to the left side if we wanted something more homey. Try as a I might I can't get the wife even remotely interested in the idea - because it would make me happy is what my friends say.
    swade41, BigO and lothiandon1940 like this.
  9. ...............Read my post #13 and you'll begin to understand why I say rent don't buy. I like your thought process (buy don't rent) for a conventional house, but not necessarily for an abandoned gas station. The costs involved in removing old buried (often leaking) tanks and soil can be astronomical, never mind the fact that used oil may have been summarily dumped or buried on the site as well. The potential liabilities and health hazards can't be discounted.
    BigO and loudbang like this.
  10. Joe McGlynn
    Joined: Jul 14, 2016
    Posts: 80

    Joe McGlynn

    If I was single I'd definitely be into a converted space -- most gas stations are too small for me though. I've seen some firehouses that would be way cooler. Bigger shop space, generally already have living areas.

    I've got a pretty nice set up where I am - four car garage for my metalworking tools and Studebaker custom project (I'm resisting the urge to slip another car project in there), and a two car garage for my wood working shop. It's not ideal but there is enough shop for me and enough house for my family.

    But yeah, I can totally see having a cool live/work (live/play) space.
    BigO and loudbang like this.
  11. Dave mcbride
    Joined: Feb 27, 2017
    Posts: 1

    Dave mcbride

    Usually seller is responsible for remediation....

    Sent from my SM-G930V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  12. ...................Yes, legally that's the case, but how many old station owners just walked away never to be found when they heard what it would cost to remediate their property:eek:
  13. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 3,006


    I could be wrong, but I thought the law had changed somewhat on that. If you never used the tanks it wasn't your problem. It falls back to the last owner or whoever used them last.
  14. Thanks for the info.
    dana barlow likes this.
  15. rjones35
    Joined: May 12, 2008
    Posts: 865


    I know when I start my car up in the garage under the house, it totally stinks up the place. I have to open windows and turn fans on. The co detector won't shut up for a while. There is a garage down the road from me that was for sale a while back, not a service station but a radiator repair place. I thought it would be cool, have the garage below, and it looked like it had a living area above it. Then I thought about all the stink, and fumes from repairing radiators....
  16. That 2nd Gulf station would be great. I love Art Deco.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  17. Hahaha. :)
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  18. I beat cancer going on 2 years, part of the reason for thinking about doing this, only go around once.
    OahuEli likes this.
  19. Rick & Jan
    Joined: Apr 9, 2008
    Posts: 422

    Rick & Jan

    I agree with ramblin dan, always thought it would kool to have an old barn, live up stairs and have all that room down below for your "stuff". Everything under one roof!
    BigO likes this.
  20. I've got a vacation week come up, might just have to go hangout at the local government building find out some info, and see if any of those people are "car guys, or gals". ;):D
    dana barlow likes this.
  21. Rick & Jan
    Joined: Apr 9, 2008
    Posts: 422

    Rick & Jan

    Go for it Big!!
    BigO likes this.
  22. dirty old man
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 8,624

    dirty old man

    Great idea, and being in NC, I find it hard to believe there aren't some "car people" in city gov. positions Check around your local cruise ins and car clubs also.
    Not a bad idea to nose around quietly a bit before you walk up to a counter and formally ask questions, as you are in small town South like me, lots of time there are people to ask for help and others to avoid if at all possible. Although my town is a lot smaller than yours, LOL.
    BigO likes this.
  23. Sounds like what I'm after. Thanks
  24. My I be so lucky to find a deal like that.
  25. Just looking and researching things at the moment, I'll post pics as things become avaliable.:)
    El Camino Kid and lothiandon1940 like this.
  26. Metaltwister
    Joined: Jul 10, 2007
    Posts: 891


    Kinda far fetched but double check the wiring in that old place. Remember years ago reading about an electriction that leaned up against the metal building at a gas station and was killed due to an electric short... Like I said far fetched but it did happen. Gotta live man... Still say o for it.
    BigO and lothiandon1940 like this.
  27. Don't forget asbestos abatement.:(
    lothianwilly71 and BigO like this.
  28. I'll soon be 60 and have no one to leave it to, renting would be ok with me as long the place makes me happy.
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  29. 2bubbas
    Joined: Mar 19, 2011
    Posts: 605


    I lived in my garage for several months- lack of heat more of a problem than lack of plumbing- could have fixed both easy enough- but was only living there while remodeling the house- better than living in the construction mess-
  30. That's a question I want to get an answer to when go to see the "boys" at city office.

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