Rural Development Projects

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by terriv, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. terriv

    terriv Well-Known Member

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    I am a real estate agent in Mississippi. I've recently gotten involved with a man that built a lake in 2000 and is developing a small rural community around it. This has gotten me very interested in the process of developing organized rural communities from onset to finish. Has anyone ever done this themselves? Want to talk about it?

    (Have to go to work but I'll be back.)
     
  2. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    Do your best to discourage this idea, I have watched Florida go from paradise to exstremely over priced houseing developments. The influx of population ruins everything, traffic becomes nightmares, schools are over crowded, the roads are not able to carry the extra vehicles. Taxes rise, vandals become a big threat followed by gang warfare, pollution becomes rampant, property goes through the roof pricewise.

    Yes, I know, you only want a little progress, but those residents are going to have to have stores, hospitals, dry cleaners, jobs, places to go to church, it never ends after it is started. Along comes regurlations, building inspectors, city governments, more taxes, more police needed, do you really want to lite the fuse that destroys your area?
     

  3. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    i agree with you most people i know are trying to move away from it not trying to hjelp it grow
     
  4. perennial

    perennial Well-Known Member

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  5. antiquestuff

    antiquestuff Well-Known Member

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    Don't do it. Stop bringing the city to the country. It ruins things. It starts small, then it grows. Then you get all the restrictions, the traffic, the stores, etc., and before long the country is gone and the city is there instead. Don't do it! Please!
     
  6. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    i guess it would be nice to have a million in the bank you made on developing but when me and dw is at the farm looking out the window that overlooks the pasture thats our million
     
  7. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    terriv, I think you'll find most people on this website are anti-development.

    A lot of us have moved out to land so that we could have animals and crops and live the way we want to without being bothered. Only to watch as neighboring properties get subdivided and the new neighbors start complaining about the farm smells and sights and sounds they thought were so charming before they moved. A lot of us have fought the county tooth and nail to avoid zoning changes that would mean the end of our farms.

    This isn't a slam on you, personally. I'm just trying to explain where a lot of us are coming from. Homesteaders and farmers are a really stubborn and independant lot - you have to be to make it with this lifestyle.
     
  8. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    A lot of big Farms are being sold,but not for farming anymore.To divide and develope land takes a lot of money up front and a Bank backing.But money can be made having it surveyed,divided,roads put in up to county specs,sold owner finance.

    big rockpile
     
  9. jack_c-ville

    jack_c-ville Well-Known Member

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    There's little enough left in America that's still rural. Why ruin it? I know that you have the best of intentions. But I've watched this kind of thing happen again and again. A few out-of-town developers make some money, all the new devleopment requires new infrastructure and schools and then tax rates and assessments rise for the long-time natives. I've watched this happen all around me here in Virginia. People who have lived here all their lives are being pushed out of their own homes because they can't afford to pay the taxes.

    I know that this sounds like jumping to conclusions. But I've seen this pattern happen again and again and again.

    I grew up in a 'planned rural community' in Maryland until the age of 13. Let me tell you, it isn't rural anymore. It's miles and miles of ugly sprawl with no soul and not a chicken or a songbird left.

    If you want to do something in the way of developing rural communities, how about investing in new manufacturing businesses to create real, lasting jobs for the locals instead of just herding in more 'transplants?' Minimum wage jobs in the stores that will eventually serve the higher-income transplants are not the same thing. There is a lot of good labor out there in Mississippi waiting to be used. Educated, hardworking people. Invest in them.

    -Jack



     
  10. Steve

    Steve Well-Known Member

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    So far that's 7 replies against and 1 neutral. Soon to be 8 against when I finish giving my 2 cents.

    I lived in Mississippi for 12 years and most of the people living there consider it one of the best kept secrets in the nation. They really don't mind the fact that the rest of the country (Alabama and Louisiana excluded) think they're backward hicks. Southerners, especially rural Southerners, are a stubborn lot that value their privacy and way of life.

    Don't make it your mission to spoil what they have. If someone wants to live in the country, I mean really wants to live in the real country, like homesteaders do, they wouldn't have anything to do with a planned and developed rural community. The "transplants" that would move to a planned rural community would be unwelcome neighbors to the folks who want to live in the "real" country.

    Don't do it.
     
  11. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    Everyone already said it better than I could have.

    I'd be beyond horrified to see something like this coming to my county. If it moved in next door, family land or not, I'd have to sell out and head further west. That and I'd do everything possible to make life a absolute living hell for those that wrecked my farm.
     
  12. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    If done right with the appropriate guidlines, a rural comunity can work well, however the subdivision bylaws need to establish the ground rules not just for 10 years, but for the entire future. I have done some that required no less then 15 acres, and also was geared towards the small homesteader, such as no commercial farming with a set size for barns, number of range animals for the acreage etc......... a well planned rural community can work, if it is thought through. If it were mine to do we would put a buffer around a very large area of land, say 2500 acres and then make the buffer a common green area for the community members. A small association fee would cover needed maintenance, and or things like stray dogs etc...............a 2500 acre development would only provide aprox 100 homesites depending on lay of land.



    That said I do not support the development of the countryside for pure profit sake. However there is a need for these size lots and home areas, as some people cant aford the 40 acre plots and all that goes with them. There is a large amount of people who want to live a country life but dont have the ability to just jump in.

    _Neal
     
  13. Hoop

    Hoop Well-Known Member

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    The developement of rural lands throughout the country IS going to take place. The only thing in question is "at what rate of developement will things proceed".

    I can fully understand people living in rural areas being dead set against any further developement. I see it around here in the Northwoods all the time.
    Chicago people buy a parcel of property on one of the numerous lakes in the area, build a huge place, .......and then seek to keep ALL OTHER developement out.

    A major employer wanted to open a light manufacturing company in the area 15 years ago, saying it would be good for the area. Today, the owners of the company are dead set against any further developement (in reality, they don't want to have to compete for the available labor pool).

    My house borders a 220 acre parcel of forested, undeveloped property. It is not MY property. It belongs to others. There is little doubt that one day it will be subdivided and developed. Do I want to see it happen? Of course not. However, with prices jumping through the stratosphere for raw land ($10000 - $15000 per acre), it is inevitable that sometime in the future the adjoining property will be another developement.

    Fortunately, I live in an area with zoning regulations in place. Minimum lot sizes are 1 1/2 acres. The area is zoned single family residential. I'll never have to worry about a trailer park being built next to me. There will never be a dog kennel built next to me. There will never be a hog rendering works built next to me.

    If you can make a dollar developing property, I say go for it. If you don't do it, somebody else will.
     
  14. prhamell

    prhamell Well-Known Member

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    I cringe whenever I see a sign "Willow Springs" or "Glen Harbor" or some other cute name that they've given a new development. Individuals want the country life, but they don't want to drive half hour to go shopping or to the bank. Soon, the cute smells and sights become an eyesore or a nuisance. My road is 1/2 mile long with two houses on it. At the end of the road is a rented corn field. The property is owned by a couple who live an hour away in a semi big city. She wants a million dollar mansion built on the land. They can't get the loan approved. (You'd think that would wake them up right there?!) Apparently she says it's that house or no house. We're all hoping the land will sit there until she gets bored. We've already had city slickers put up a huge house down on another road. They think our lifestyle is "cute." Becky
     
  15. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Here in the Midwest, it's the zoning office that prevents the area from getting crowded. For example, where I bought my land the minimum lot size is 5 acres. They mean it, too. The owner had split off an acre by mistake, and the zoning office told them that none of the already-sold 5 acre parcels would be allowed to build until the problem was taken care of.

    I suppose that a rural planned community is possible but I have never seen one. The people who live in planned communities out here are mostly concerned that their neighbors do not own hoses and do not park in their driveways. I think that sort of mindset would struggle with skunks and snapping turtles and other hazards. (A large snapping turtle can bite off a toddlers finger).

    Also, the biggest perk of having a bit of land is the ability to use it. If I buy 5 acres I want to do more with it than mow it. I would avoid restrictions on, say, keeping chickens.

    Developement is unavoidable because the population of the USA is growing. This puts rural areas under more and more pressure. I do not know the ins and outs of a planned community, but I DO know that people WILL want a corner store and gas station, perhaps a place to buy clothes, a park, and at least 3 food joints. People just do.
     
  16. Helena

    Helena Well-Known Member

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    In our small town I can also see something like this coming in the very near future. The town..3 miles from us...is now in the process of getting sewers. When one person complaings to the EPA about a neighbors septic..well the snowball begins to roll..if you get my meaning. But..there are several old farm that have been sold in the past few years and the word is that the one that I can see from my deck on the beautiful mountainside is just waiting for the sewer project to they can put a trailer park. I understand people have to live somewhere but as mentioned before this makes for busier roads..more teachers..etc. I know things can't stay the way they have always been..but sometime progress isn't the best for everyone. I'll be keeping up with the local town meetings to see what is happening in our community for sure. I think we all should attend a township meeting at least a few times a year to keep ahead of things.
     
  17. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My dad owns a cabin on a dirt road in a remote mountain community -- his neighbors are one extremely rich guy with 80 acres and a helipad and paid staff to maintain it, about twenty people with small to medium sized cabins, and another moderately rich guy with forty acres. This place is SO remote it only got power five years ago.

    The moderately rich guy managed to get the property split into 40 parcels without the community noticing -- supposedly, the community was notified, but ... no one knew about it.

    Issue in this area is that 1, the water table is shallow and wells go dry every summer anyway, and 2, the road is dirt and maintained by the residents (with help from the ultra-rich guy who sends someone down the road with a snowplow when it snows or a dozer if it washes out) -- and you're responsible for the road in front of your house. Plus, this area (Rim Country) tends to have explosive wildfires (one went to 450,000 acres in 3 days and 70,000 acres in about three hours two years ago! -- it was moving at about 70-80mph) and there is only one road in or out that follows a ridgeline ...

    the guy trying to sell 40 parcels is fighting the idea of upgrading the road (meaning we'll need to eat the increased maintenance costs), and the water table problem isn't solvable period.

    Plus, if there's a fire ... well, you can try to flee by the road. But we're all very concerned that if there's a fire, and someone panicks and wrecks their vehicle, we'll be trapped on a narrow mountain road with no way out. The more people in there, the more chance of someone wrecking -- or just simply getting a bottleneck and getting stuck. Evacuation could be very problematic if there were forty more cars trying to go down that road ... it's a rutted, narrow road that has a top speed of 20mph on a good day.

    Sigh. Development in rural areas has so many problems that need to be addressed, and people often don't want to admit they ARE problems ...

    Leva
     
  18. terriv

    terriv Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure most of you understood the idea here. I am anti-development also but in this case it can't be stopped. I live only 25 miles from the state capitol (with a 700% murder rate btw) in what was a small town rural community. People are fleeing the city and development is raging and unavoidable.

    Here's where I'm going with this however....

    One cow pasture up the road becomes 1000 mid to low income houses.

    Another cow pasture down the road becomes 4-14 acre small homesteading tracts.

    Which would you prefer?

    The guy I am working with had 200+ family acres. He built a nice big new home on it, then his mother needed 24 hour medical care so he had to sell. Rather than sell to a 1000 house cow-pasture developer, he developed it himself to protect his property.

    First he built a couple of lakes, then multiple private roads in to them. There is an ordinance (fire) that limits 5 houses per private road. So then he divided the land on each road into tracts ranging from 4 to 14 acres (most on the larger end) each with lake frontage. He makes the "road" a "part of each lot" so it can never become a public road. Owners own and share upkeep of the road. By doing this he is limiting the number of houses to 5 per dead end road (lots can NEVER again be subdivided). Now it's a "small acreage rural development". He has done that on almost all 200 acres around his property, writing coventants that allow for animals, farming, etc. but limit other development (no businesses, no subdivide, no signage).

    In other words, this is PROTECTIVE DEVELOPMENT. Otherwise it will all end up 1000 1/2 acre-per-house cowpastures. I prefer 14 acre indivisable small homesteads and lakes.

    I thought it an ingenious idea, thus my interest. I'm selling his "homesteads" and I'm happy to be involved in this type "protective" project. If I have to be a realtor, I want to do what's best for people and the environment in the face of a dimmer reality. In this case, I think this is best.

    Understand?
     
  19. terriv

    terriv Well-Known Member

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    As a side note, I own 11 acres, part pasture, part reforested. The first project when we moved here was to plant 3000 trees to block views of the highway and preserve wildlife habitat. If I must have neighbors, I want more neighbors like myself. Unfortunately, I can't afford 500 acres.
     
  20. DaleK

    DaleK Well-Known Member

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    I'll bet you 10 years from now not one of those "homestead" lots will have anything but weeds, maybe a putting green, and a million dollar home growing on them. This is just a fancy way of creating "estate" lots, so instead of a half acre footprint per house, you tie up 14 acres.