Stories of how you came about your property

Ortimber

Platinum Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
783
Location
SW Oregon
Tractor
Kubota and John Deere
I grew up on a 180 acre ranch, and knew from an early age that I wanted the same lifestyle as an adult. Like most places, property really started getting expensive in the early 90's and when I got married and had kids, the thought of owning my own place (other than a house in town) seemed pretty far fetched. After a few years of living in town, I felt like a square peg in a round hole. I talked to my parents and we all agreed that raising my kids in the country was a good idea. So we put a double wide on my parents place and spent 16 years in that little house. As mom and dad have gotten older, the estate planning became a sore subject as I have two siblings that want nothing to do with the place, but they are entitled to their share. I started getting the idea that maybe we should move off and get our own place. We started looking for the right property and never found anything that we really liked. Fortunately, as luck would have it, a neighboring piece of land went up for sale. We immediately got in touch with a real estate agent, and long story short we bought the property the same week. My wife loved the house, I loved the shop and the property, and while we spent more than we were really wanting to, it's been a wonderful adventure so far.

Fast forward to today.. My son graduated from college and came back to our area. Grandma and Grandpa just happened to have a vacant house on their land (our old place) and he now rents that from them. We are all close and really I can't imagine things working out any better. Life is good.
 

Doofy

Elite Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2017
Messages
4,770
Location
Alaska
Tractor
LS XR 3135HC
Moved to Alaska in 1963. Homesteaded 80 acres in 1966. Still alive and kicking and enjoying life.
 

fried1765

Super Star Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2015
Messages
10,195
Tractor
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, 8N Ford, Gravely 12 HP "Professional", 48" SCAG Liberty
In 1932 my mother (single school teacher at the time) bought my 12 acre ocean/bay view property, with house built in 1730, for $875 cash. The house is now 288 years old, and I still use it 6 months each year.
I acquired the property by simply managing to outlive both my mom and dad (they married 7/7/37).
Land development value is now 2500 times original cost.
I put the property in trust for my children. They let me pay the expensive taxes/upkeep, and I have life estate (provision of the trust).
I am 78. The property cannot be sold or developed while I am alive.
I like it that way.
 
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two_bit_score

Super Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2008
Messages
8,778
Location
Texas - from the brush and pear to the piney woods
Tractor
John Deere 110 TLB, Diamond C 19LPX GN trailer
In 1932 my mother (single school teacher at the time) bought my 12 acre water view property, with house built in 1730, for $875 cash. The house is now 288 years old, and I still use it 6 months each year.
I acquired the property by simply managing to outlive both my my mom dad (they married 7/7/37).
Land development value now is worth 2500 times original cost.
I put it in trust for my children. They let me pay the expensive taxes/upkeep, and let me live there (a provision of the trust).
It will never be developed while I am alive.
I like it that way.

I can’t go back to 1730 but my family started acquiring land in Texas in 1828. Some is still in the family. Personally the last I acquired took me 18 months to the day to finalize it. Several stray mineral heirs to get resolved. But it was worth it. One year after finally closing we got an OG&M lease offer in the mail. After almost 6 months negotiating we obtained a very good lease and the lease bonus was 30 times the original offer that came in the mail. We don’t live on it but do have ongoing operations on it which we visit frequently. Purely a serendipitous purchase which worked out very well for us.


TBS
 

STERLING351

Bronze Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2018
Messages
80
Tractor
Mahindra 2555 cab, Mahindra 4500
My fiancé and I bought our first 42 acres 2 years ago when I was 25 and she was 24. Its back in my hometown and only 3 miles from my parents ranch. We spent about 3 months looking for property which was difficult when we lived 400 miles away at the time. It was a great decision for both of us her parent are only about 30 minutes away as well. We still lived 400 miles away for the first year we owned the property building our careers and resumes so we could get excellent jobs when we moved. We both have great jobs, debt free. Its 42 acres with a large pond on it, tons of deer, mature oak trees and mesquite trees. it was raw land when we bought it so I have been redoing fences, built a 30x40 shop, and I just dozed 1.5 acres where the house will be started in March. Its great, im glad we bought it young and were able to pay cash for it. This spring we will be planting some pecan trees and other fruit trees for our kids to enjoy many years down the road along with the deer. Like other mentioned using larger equipment is much better for clearing, I found a local guy to bulldoze my fence line and my house site, $100/hr with his D5 but he did a great job, much faster than a chainsaw and tractor. Once im done with this last section of fence its time to throw some brahmans on.
 
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California

Super Star Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2004
Messages
11,954
Location
Sonoma County
Tractor
Yanmar YM240, and now just one YM186D
Hello all, I've been lurking here awhile. First post. I don't have any land to speak of and thought it would be interesting to hear how some of you got your place.

Another thing i'd like to see some discussion on is the best way to acquire land.
Acquisition of this ranch (orchard) was simple. I bought the other half that I didn't inherit, out of Dad's estate. Grandparents had initially bought it in 1950 for a final retirement home, Dad inherited it and spent summers here (school teacher), now I spend the majority of time here, but still own the house in town where we lived before retirement.

But you are asking how to get started. My experience with urban real estate might give you some ideas you can apply to rural land. I finished college then worked as a Journeyman Carpenter for a few years. I asked a realtor to find us a first house, he found us a $15k duplex where rent income paid 100% of our housing cost in the other side. So at that point we continued to live modest and bank at least 25% of gross income into a fund to buy a future nice family home. That realtor came back soon and said You're a Carpenter, how would you like a repo 5 unit rental for no money down that needs Carpenter work (really, handyman work) to get it back to income producing? Great. Days I wasn't employed I worked on the rental. The first 2-3 units, when cleaned up and occupied, paid for the second mortgage (carried by the seller) and the first, bank, mortgage he had been desperate to out from under. By the time I had all five units rentable it had some positive cash flow. But the real value to me was its resale value was appreciating, along with general inflation, as fast as the nice home I hoped to buy some day, and it was costing me net nothing to ride that appreciation up. That actually worked out, after a few years I sold the 5-unit and the original duplex and put so much down on the nice house that I've never had high payments since. Eventually I refinanced our home for the last cash I needed to buy this orchard out of Dad's estate. Now after a few more years I have clear title on both the city house and the orchard, no mortgages. At California (astronomical) land prices.

What I hope to share is that getting a toe-hold on property that is too large to buy outright but which generates income to pay the seller, can leverage a small down payment into eventually owning expensive land through the magic of owning income property that appreciates over time. I think its not sufficiently recognized that appreciation in value of income property over time creates big value that you can then cash out to go buy your dream property.

Also a minor point: you generally have to go with seller financing for farm and for much income-producing property. Lenders don't like to make loans on anything beyond conventional homes because behind the scenes they re-sell your loan as part a bulk package that is all home loans.
 

fried1765

Super Star Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2015
Messages
10,195
Tractor
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, 8N Ford, Gravely 12 HP "Professional", 48" SCAG Liberty
My fiancé and I bought our first 42 acres 2 years ago when I was 25 and she was 24. Its back in my hometown and only 3 miles from my parents ranch. We spent about 3 months looking for property which was difficult when we lived 400 miles away at the time. It was a great decision for both of us her parent are only about 30 minutes away as well. We still lived 400 miles away for the first year we owned the property building our careers and resumes so we could get excellent jobs when we moved. We both have great jobs, debt free. Its 42 acres with a large pond on it, tons of deer, mature oak trees and mesquite trees. it was raw land when we bought it so I have been redoing fences, built a 30x40 shop, and I just dozed 1.5 acres where the house will be started in March. Its great, im glad we bought it young and were able to pay cash for it. This spring we will be planting some pecan trees and other fruit trees for our kids to enjoy many years down the road along with the deer. Like other mentioned using larger equipment is much better for clearing, I found a local guy to bulldoze my fence line and my house site, $100/hr with his D5 but he did a great job, much faster than a chainsaw and tractor. Once im done with this last section of fence its time to throw some brahmans on.

WHAT A GREAT PLAN !!!
 
  
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03 shaker

New member
Joined
Nov 13, 2018
Messages
12
Location
North Alabama
Tractor
None
What I hope to share is that getting a toe-hold on property that is too large to buy outright but which generates income to pay the seller, can leverage a small down payment into eventually owning expensive land through the magic of owning income property that appreciates over time. I think its not sufficiently recognized that appreciation in value of income property over time creates big value that you can then cash out to go buy your dream property.

I think I understand what you're saying. Something I've thought about is if I found a farm I could afford with a livable house on it (or a fixer upper), move to the farm and keep my current house as a rental. Or vice versa. But I have no idea if I want to be a landlord. Or like someone else said, sell off the house and an acre or whatever for some cash to go towards other things.
 
  
  • Thread Starter
#39  
OP
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03 shaker

New member
Joined
Nov 13, 2018
Messages
12
Location
North Alabama
Tractor
None
I really want to thank everyone so far for the great stories and ideas! I'm ready to get serious about looking. Just have to wait and save more.
 

plowhog

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2015
Messages
2,098
Location
Northern NV, Northern CA
Tractor
Massey GC1710, Massey 1758 w/cab, Ventrac 4500Y, Internat. TD9 dozer Ford F-800 dump GMC 3500 dump GMC 2500 Duramax Chevy 1500HD Polaris 800 RZR-SxS Ditch Witch 2100
When shopping for property, information is your friend. You might consider engaging a local realtor that can set up an automatic search for you in the local MLS system. You can specify number of acres, area, price range, etc. Then when a new listing pops up-- it goes *immediately* to your email inbox. That's just one way to stay on top of things.

Auctions are another route but you need cash. You can spot the savvy investors at auctions. They have cashier's checks in the amount of ten cents or so. And one for $100k, $50k, $25k, and so on. Think of it for a minute. A property at auction has been bid up to, say, $90k. Since you have a cashier's check for ten cents, you bid $90 thousand dollars and ten cents and be the high bidder. Those who only brought cashier's checks in increments of $10,000 has to up your bid by $10k-- while you can up their bid by ten cents. LOL.

My wife and I knew we wanted to retire in Northern Nevada. But we wanted to thoroughly know and understand the local market before buying. We tried making weekend trips to look at property, but that wasn't enough. We bought a small, brand new home in the area. We started living there, slowly migrating away from California, and learning. We spent four years learning the Northern Nevada market.

We began to focus on two very small rural "ranchette" developments that had everything we wanted. Finally, the right deal came along, but was overpriced. I knew it was overpriced and would not sell. So we waited. The price dropped $50k but was still over priced. We waited. When it dropped $50k again, I made an offer over $100k below what they were asking. I presented a detailed analysis of why the price we offered was fair and appropriate. Our offer was accepted, which was an *excellent* deal on a fantastic piece of property just exactly what we wanted.

We sold the small home that was our "base of operations" for four years-- for $125k more than we paid for it. Looking back, the most important thing we did in order to find the best possible property was to take our time and thoroughly understand the local market before purchasing. Based on doing that, we knew where to focus our shopping, and we had the knowledge that the property we wanted was overpriced at first.
 
 
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