Expensive land - still worth it?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by jcarroll42, Jun 6, 2006.

  1. jcarroll42

    jcarroll42 New Member

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    I’ve been lurking, but could now use some advice. My wife and I are considering moving out of the city into a more rural situation. The area we want to move to is very (very) expensive – i.e. $100K/acre. The ‘good’ news is that real estate values in our city have gone nuts over the ten years we’ve owned our place – so we could probably afford the ~4-5 acres that we’d like. But then we’d be out of cash.

    I’m wondering if it would be possible to have a sustainable home-based life in an expensive market, if you factor out the cost of land. Do you all think that the biggest hurdle to a given area is the cost of the land, or do other expenses scale up with land price making this impossible?

    Thanks for your thoughts,
    jeff
     
  2. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    My first thought is that expensive land equals expensive taxes. That is an expense that will continue.

    Jena
     

  3. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Some people have an abiding craving to own land, and others do not.

    I have always had the land bug, and if paying that much money for land was the ONLY way that I could buy then I would. But, we have never had that kind of money so instead we moved to a place where land was cheaper.

    I think that the answer is going to depend on how much you desire this land. I WILL say that ANY job that will cover that kind of land payment will be demanding and cut into your outside work time. Some people work overtime and homestead and some cannot manage it, it all depends on you!
    :hobbyhors
     
  4. sancraft

    sancraft Well-Known Member

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    I;m thinking not only expensive taxes, but lots and lots of restictions as to building types, sizes, livestock, etc. I don't think people paying that kind of money for property are going to want to see your clothes on a line, hear your rooster crowing in the morning or smell your chicken coup. JMHO. Why move somewhere that expensive, if you don't mind me asking? I'm just being nosey, so it won't hurt my feelings if you chose not to answer.
     
  5. cfabe

    cfabe Well-Known Member

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    Expensive land also bring with it yuppies that will push to enact strict building and zoning laws to turn the area into just sprawling residential mansions and strip centers.
     
  6. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    Where are you looking at land for 100K/acre? Is it close to a metro area, or in FL or CA?

    Heck I'd sell you all you'd ever want for half that!, and you could actually grow something!

    The millionaires next to my property are only paying 70K/acre, for their .5 to 2.5M homes :baby04:
     
  7. jcarroll42

    jcarroll42 New Member

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    Hi All,



    Thanks for your thoughts. I realize that taxes are going to be a big issue. As far as zoning goes, I think that the community is very supportive of agriculture - in fact if you can demonstrate that a certain % of your income is derived from agriculture there are large tax breaks.

    Basically, we'd like to live on an island between Vancouver and Victoria, BC. There are more remote islands, which would be difficult with a young family - as well as harder to access markets for produce etc. The more accessible islands are expensive, as I mentioned.

    I looked for an example property to satisfy peoples curiosity - and it's more like $75K/acre (not 100K). Still lots. If you're curious:

    http://www.mls.ca/PropertyDetails.a...URL=%3fAreaID%3d750&Mode=0&PropertyID=4559788


    Hope that works. Basically, we're a couple years away from this (babies on the way), but I want to have realistic expectations of what's livable. I appreciate your input.



    - jeff
     
  8. suitcase_sally

    suitcase_sally Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Just a quick note on pricing. Asking price is not necessarily selling price. In 1999 I purchased a 113 acre piece with frontage on two roads. Almost a square piece. Asking price : $149,900. Selling price: $80,000. In 1994 I purchased an 80 acre/100% wooded piece. Asking price: $105,000. Selling price: $60,000.

    Granted, it took some time to find these places. I could either find something in my price range that I didn't like (flat bean field) or it was something I loved but couldn't afford. I didn't give up. FINALLY, after 4 years I found these two places. Lucky me!
     
  9. Jim-mi

    Jim-mi Well-Known Member

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    I know of two people who have gotten out of the realestate biz. Both have some very interesting thoughts on this totally insane market. Both agree that the bubble is not bursting but starting to leak badly.
    Both have sold Very pricy *land* and they know that if the economy tanks that these buyers with the new funny loans (forgot what they call them) will lose what they think they have bought.
    One of these friendships started with the realestate woman who had the listing for some acreage next to mine. The *listing* time had expired so she could speak her mind.
    The seller (next to me) had paid way to much for this acreage and now that they needed the cash (and to bail out) their asking price was WAY out of line. In the 4-5 months...?? that it was listed I was the only person who made an offer.----(refused)

    When will the bubble burst/deflate---how much---how fast---economy tanking.....????
    Anyone who can answer that is................probably full of BS.

    Suggest you sit and watch the market for awhile before commiting that kind (100k) of money for *land*
     
  10. suitcase_sally

    suitcase_sally Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I agree with Jim-Mi. I remember back in the 80's when the economy was in the slump. You could buy property for nothing down. I remember a farm that had a big sign out front that said "For Sale. Nothing down. Just take over Payments." I don't know if he had over-paid or just couldn't keep the payments going.

    The best time to buy is when the economy tanks. Bargains everywhere.

    I think right now people are buying with the idea of "flipping" for a profit. It ends up becoming a pyramid when the price gets so high that no one can afford to buy and the whole scheme collapses.
     
  11. swollen tongue

    swollen tongue Well-Known Member

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    the bottom line is: sell high and buy low!!
     
  12. jessimeredith

    jessimeredith That's relativity. Supporter

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    I'd say look somewhere else, but if there is where you want to be....then definately wait and watch for a bit.
     
  13. Tracy Rimmer

    Tracy Rimmer CF, Classroom & Books Mod Supporter

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    Jeff -- we, too, looked at lower mainland and inside passage islands in our quest for land. In all honesty, we decided that the rich folks from Vancouver are welcome to it. Go inland and north a ways and you get a much better bang-per-buck ratio. We are now looking in the Terrace area, inland from Prince Rupert. Beautiful country, fewer people, and few restrictions. Land there, too, is rising in price -- so we'd like to get in sooner rather than later, but it's not in terms of what we'd eventually get for it, as we never intend to leave!

    The interior/ Kootenays, etc., is dry -- and you couldn't pay me enough to live near Kamloops -- it's far too dry for me -- but if you want interior -- the area from Quesnel to Bella Coola has some amazing (inexpensive) acreages available. If you want that coastal climate, I'd be looking north (Prince Rupert/Terrace) or even north Vancouver island. There are places around Port Hardy going for still reasonable prices.

    Lower mainland or lower islands is just stupidly expensive, and should global warming actually be something to worry about, I wouldn't want to be on an island. JMHO.

    Tracy
     
  14. jcarroll42

    jcarroll42 New Member

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    Hi All,




    I agree with the up-thread views on the real-estate market. I believe that long-term, there's a serious correction happening. I also think that destination/vacation type property like the gulf islands I mentioned will probably decrease faster than our condo in the city. But at the same time, you have to move when it makes sense for your family - and we're looking at about a 3-5 year time frame.

    As always, market timing is everything. We need to maximize the return on our city place while minimizing the cost of our land. If anyone has a crystal ball that works, I'd love to borrow it.



    Thanks for your thoughts.....
    - jeff