How much is that 'sorry' mountain land going for now?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by hillsidedigger, Oct 27, 2006.

  1. hillsidedigger

    hillsidedigger Well-Known Member

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    Excerpt from the Smoky Mountain News about Jackson County, NC which features such places as Wolf Creek and Panthertown Valley because this was the heart of the last really wild place in the Southern Mountains:

    "the full-time residents of Jackson County and its neighboring counties will be looking at a grim picture whereas the future is concerned. Land along this bottom where I farm was selling not long ago for $300 to $500 an acre but is now selling for as much as $100,000 an acre. Flat bottom land is choice real estate here in the mountains, and the prices are only going to rise as out-of-state developers come in here looking for choice sites for their gated communities, retirement and second homes. Why, they’re selling property up in Tuckasegee from helicopters, with buyers not even setting foot on the ground! $300,000 for one-third acre lots."

    http://www.smokymountainnews.com/issues/10_06/10_25_06/op_using_development.html

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Where are all these buyers coming from? Somebody must be really worried about the nearterm future, of course a lot of good 1/3 acre would do a family without roads, stocked stores and electricty.

    Note: From 1900 to 1960 you couldn't pay people to take land around there from you. (talking about the Tuckaseegee community which is the land 5 to 10 miles up the valley from Culowhee).
     
  2. Fire-Man

    Fire-Man Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yea--My Great Grandfather rode his mule and buggy to Myrtle Beach SC in the 30's---Land was 17 cents a acre-----He said he Kicked the sandy dirt and said "this want grow nothing" got back in his buggy and went home----such a wasted trip. LOL-------He rode over to that same spot with my father and I in the late 60's---------it was selling for $70,000 per acre lot---------Have no Idea on todays market--------But I bet it didn't come down---LOL. Randy
     

  3. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    it's just starting here. :grump: :Bawling:

    if anyone has any information about how another small mountain town stopped it, please pm me asap? we are working hard to stop it, but could use some good examples of alternatives other places have used successfully.
     
  4. Chuck

    Chuck Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Stop what? Land prices from going up?
     
  5. fernando

    fernando Well-Known Member

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    The "choice" property in my neck of the woods is waterfront along the banks of the Cumberland river. Some going for $40K per 1/3 acre lot. It wasn't all that long ago that such property couldn't be given away because of fear of flooding. People would farm such bottom land but wouldn't think of building a home there.

    You can't help but wonder where all that cash comes from to dump on previously "cheap" real estate.
     
  6. homebirtha

    homebirtha Well-Known Member

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    I wonder if the cooling off of the real estate market will slow things down there. My aunt and uncle had a big plot of land in Whittier, gorgeous spot. They ran a nursery, built their own house, it was heaven. After my uncle died, my aunt couldn't hardly give it away. And this was only 5 or 6 years ago. If she'd hung on to it a few more years... oh well. .... I think it's not so much people worrying about the nearterm future. It's a gorgeous area, and people are starting to appreciate that.

     
  7. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    There is no stopping it, they aren't making any more land but there are more people and more people with money.

    This article can be a little misleading, it fails to mention the high dollar growth in this area that the people wanted. If I remember correctly Jackson County includes Sylva,Dillsboro, and Cashiers along with WNC University in Cullowhee. Dillsboro is the starting point for the GSM railway the scenic train. Cashiers is an incredible high dollar area filled with country clubs and high end homes right down the road from Highlands another incredibly rich community.

    I don't remember anyone refusing the money they were offered for this useless land either when I lived there.
     
  8. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Oh, I dont know, a nice radioactive spill might cool prices for a while. Just remember this all you out there believing in immigration as some sort of economic necessity. Yep the economy will expand, yep some will get rich, but everybody ends up living squeezed closer and closer together. Especially as the wealthy buy up whats left of any wilderness. The USA birthrate is at replacement level, the big increase in numbers is from politicians bribed to leave the border open so their benefactors can get even richer from cheap labor. Its funny to see the politico commercials now of how many incumbants are suddendly against illegal immigration. Guess they were taking a siesta the past few years, huh?
     
  9. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    i would like to know where such a large volume of people get that much money to live on over-priced land. within 20 miles of my home, there have been many thousands of homes sold for well over $300,000. 1.5 miles away the homes START at $400,000. the scenic ridge properties are insanely priced. i saw one lot sell for $159,000...the lot alone.
     
  10. kenuchelover

    kenuchelover Well-Known Member

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    You also can't help but wonder why insurance companies are stupid enough to insure high priced houses there.... especially when all indicators agree that the weather is going to keep getting worse, with more storms & flooding & such....

    ....and where the insurance companies pass the cost onto (everybody living in safer areas, perchance?).

    All it'll take is one little economic downturn or period of flooding for them to start screaming "govt bailout".
     
  11. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    stop the insane land grab, that gobbles up every inch of diverse and sensitive mountain land then digs roads up and down every hillside so it all washes into the creek which kills not only the fish but ruins any chance of the land being used recreationally in the foreseeable future while systematically destroying our local culture and economy leading to the local populace basically being enalaved to the new owners. i guess it's the american way. seems to be happening every where.

    ya might be sorry ya asked. :rolleyes: i'm quite passionate about this issue. :help:

    do you have any ideas what we can do? our prime and unique farm land is currently having an interstate sized 5 lane highway built on top of it, that doesn't connect to anything, even potentially in the future. our once thriving local economy is dying it's last gasps after the arrival of walmart, lowe's, walgreens and every fast food place you can imagine. we have 5 exits off I-40, but only one is developed. plans are underway to build a 6th that will service one strip mall then put visitors right back on the interstate to ship them out of here as fast as they can, lest they actually spend money on a locally owned business. these are also the only places of employment.

    our leaders are selling our souls for a sour bowl of pottage.

    and we are desperate for creative ideas or examples. anyone??
     
  12. hillsidedigger

    hillsidedigger Well-Known Member

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    Most of Jackson County was included in the original plans for the great Southern Appalachians national park, but the park was scaled back to only the Smoky Mountains

    with much of the rest of the Southen Appalachians included within national forest purchase units of which much land was acquired for the national forests.

    Floods in that area early in the 20th. Century were largely blamed on the extent to which mountain sides there had been cleared for pasture, so the public effort to acquire these lands for reforestation.

    Now, the patchwork of national forest lands leaves the surrounding and inholding private lands as very attractive to developers. The pastures of a century ago did contribute to the floods

    and you can bet, the explosive increase in impervious surfaces (roofs, roads, driveways, commercial buildings/parking lots, etc.) there lately will result in some unimaginable flooding at some point in time.
     
  13. cast iron

    cast iron Well-Known Member

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    1. They take responsibility for their future.
    2. They get an education.
    3. They secure a profession or trade.
    4. They get a good solid job in said profession or trade.

    At least that's what is happening around here. We have the same type of situation you listed above. High density developments ( 6' between houses, no yard etc) with houses starting at 450K for the most basic one, and they are sold very quickly. While the market has slowed slightly in my immediate area, it seems to have "slowed" from outrageously insane to just insane.

    There is no mystery as to why people are buying these homes... they have good jobs. This area seems to be constantly advertising for bio-tech jobs, manufacturing jobs, health care, software, the trades etc.

    Yes, some of the buyers are dual income, but not as much as people seem to assume. There is also the lack of people having children these days. Notice how few children are standing at the bus stop in the development? You may have a 12 house development and there will be 3 children standing at the school bus stop each morning.

    Are there some people who are over extended, and will be in trouble if/when the economy cools off more? Of course there are, there always have been, and there always will be. But it will be very few people compared to the overall home ownership population. These people have made some bad decisions, most will weather the storm and realign finance's, and a few will actually loose their home. But those that loose their home will be a relative handful in the grand scheme of things.

    Reading this board one sometimes gets the feeling that the evil housing market crash is going to rain doom and gloom down on the majority of the populous. That's just not so. The housing market goes up, the housing market levels out, the housing market goes down. Some people make poor decisions, most make halfway decent decisions. And life continues on. Heck, I saw a stat the other day that said 1/3 of Americans own their homes outright, they have no mortgage at all... so much for "everyone will be in financial doom" when the markets fluctuated.
     
  14. Ramblin Wreck

    Ramblin Wreck Well-Known Member Supporter

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    First the high ground in NC, Tennessee, and Georiga skyrocketed in price. Then the upcountry in SC escalated. I finally wised up and bought a few acres on Lookout Mountain in NE Alabama. The tax appraisal has tripled in the last three years. It's not the best laying land, but it does have a view.
     
  15. MELOC

    MELOC Master Of My Domain

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    5. they buy their dreams all at once and are slaves to the banks and insurance companies for the next 30 years.

    the municipalities love playing with the huge amount of tax money these fools tender. all it will take is a year or three of hardship to ruin it all. it is hard for me to fathom paying $2000+ per month mortgage and $4000+ per year in taxes.

    the job market is a bit different here. most of these folks commute 60-90+ miles to DC or Baltimore. there is really not a surplus of high tech jobs in my immediate area.

    i guess some of them "rode the wave" of escalating real estate value from DC northward. maybe many of them have a decent chunk-o-change to pay down on these homes. :shrug:
     
  16. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    The great Smokey mountains National Park was not exactly a popular thing with locals in WNC and TN. The gov't pretty much seized the land and threw the people out to create a park for the east coast to enjoy. The quaint little towns in the park were actually people's homes that they displaced. The park now creates some the the worst pollution in the SE from tourist travel.

    Fortunate or unfortunate our economy has created large numbers of wealthy people. These people are able to buy what they want where they want it. And then do what they want with it.
     
  17. Ramblin Wreck

    Ramblin Wreck Well-Known Member Supporter

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    When you visit Cades Cove, your understand why the native Americans first and the European settlers second hated being booted out of the place. It is special.
     
  18. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    The park now creates some the the worst pollution in the SE from tourist travel.


    this is incorrect. the park is more the victim of the pollution, certainly not the cause.

    it is well documented (please google the topic) that tva admits (beginning in the 90's)they are responsible for at least 75% of the air quality problems in the smokies. US411, that crosses some of the highest peaks, does contribute to the problem, but far less than tva.

    the worst days are when the temps are high. everyone cranks up the ac (afraid to sweat i reckon.) tva uses coal fired generators, which are the most polluting of any kind of energy production.

    the great smoky mountains national park has the second worst air quality in the country, after LA.

    rambler, cades cove would be OK if it weren't bumper to bumper traffic 9 months of the year. cherokee recently began a biodiesel bus route between cherokee and gatlinburg. hopefully something similar will soon be put in place in cades cove.

    back to the original topic.... i don't know where all these people are coming from either. i just wish they wouldn't mess the mountains up so bad while they are here.
     
  19. spam4einstein

    spam4einstein Well-Known Member

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    Thats just stupid! Lots of people own their expensive homes cash. They work hard, make good choices and have the money to buy the place they want. There are some folks who overextend. But there are lots who own outright, most of my family members do. I also rode the rise in home prices and because, was able to buy our place cash.
     
  20. hillsidedigger

    hillsidedigger Well-Known Member

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    Storms are often most intense right before they fizzle.

    I think this is the case now with the real estate market in the remote parts of the Southern Appalachians.

    Last Saturday, while working outdoors here on the place, I saw at least 200 helicopters flights (I think there were 4 helicopters, 2 coming and 2 going, all day, with a rapid turnaround) right overhead to shuttle buyers out to a new low hill, not mountains at all subdivision. It was a clear Saturday during leaf season, a lot of buyers showed up and the choppers flew the 10 miles from the sales office at the Interstate out to circle over the development and back, and right over me working outside. (They had to fly them in because, the roads are only promised to be built).

    Acre lots for $300k. I wonder how many bought without setting foot on the ground. I also wonder, if, 3 years from now, they would be able to get $5,000 (about the actual current raw land value) for their $300k investment.

    The night is darkest, right before the dawn, and I am hoping the Sun comes up soon and reveals the folly of spending such sums for worthless land (not truly worthless, if in fairly large tracts, unless you are surrounded by the likes of the sort of people who buy such places).

    Funny, a couple of years ago, a wild-eyed developer told me the county right up the way, about 18,000 now, would have a population of a million in 20 years with Western North Carolina having 20 million people. He thought it was 'great'. If that even starts to come true, I am moving.