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Update #35 How long did it take you to find a farm? (warning--I'm whinning a bit)

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  • #61
    Originally posted by TouchstoneAcres View Post
    Our commutes are 38 and 65 miles one way. You have to give something up to get a nice farm while you're young enough to work it. We looked 18 months and saw the tradeoffs and picked one.
    We did about the same. We looked casually for a few years, then seriously for a year. DH and I could never agree. I would love the house, but he would find fault. He'd love the house and I was absolutely refuse it. Finally we found something we could both live with though both of us were looking at 30 and 50 minute drives to work and those are the good days with no bad traffic.

    Three years later I am still doing the 50 minute drive, he got transfered closer to the house(20 minutes). We love it though. 5 acres, exactly five neighbors all really nice and helpful.(The first month we moved in our older neighbor bushed hogged half our property and helped do the last 1/4 of fence posts we needed for the pasture. )

    So if you can put up with the drive, there a lot of benefits.
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    • #62
      Originally posted by StGermain View Post
      I saw a flyer for a farm auction with antiques. There was a picture of a beuatiful antique trunk, the kind that would make a great coffee table. The farm was nearly 500 acres, owned by the same family since the land was settled in the early-mid 1800's. The old lady outlived her husband and all her children, and when she died at 99 years old, the grandchildren put the farm and contents up for auction in tracts of 10-40 acres. The tract with the home also included the old cookhouse and the barn. (I talked to the old lady's granddaughter who said she remembered her grandma still cooking on the woodstove in the cookhouse while the grandpa and hands moved it on rollers with mules pulling it away from the house. She wanted to be able to serve them lunch after them moved the cookhouse.)

      I got to the auction late, because there were some loose ostriches (!) in the road to the sale and I stopped with several others to help corral the birds into a trailer. When they bidding on the property came up, I watched with interest, because I had sort-of been looking for a small farm. The BM at the barn I was boarding at had gotten into drugs, and had pretty much stopped doing barn chores. The boarders pitched in to make sure animals were fed and troughs filled, but it was going downhill. The last straw was when one of the BM's horses died out in the gelding's pasture. He wasn't going to bother disposing of the body and couldn't understand why we were upset witht he vultures on it and our horses still out there. I was interested in a new place, but in no place to buy it, because I already owned a home and as a single, pink-collar worker didn't make enough for two mortgages.

      In the end, I fell in love with the house (built in 1849, 10 and 12 ft ceilings, 4 fireplaces) and the house and 13 acres went for $60K. I bought it without having the 10% down in my checking account. Normally I'd go to my mother to cover something like that until I could pull money from my 401K, but she was out of town. I drove to my aunt and uncle;s house and said, "I just bought this house (plops down the flyer) and I need to borrow $6000." He pulled out his checkbook and said, "Are you sure you don't need $10,000?". (I love my family) I paid him back in 2 weeks, of course. Thankfully found financing for the balance, sold my out house and moved to the middle of nowhere. No, the house hadn't been touched since 1961 when they added electricity and indoor plumbing, and doesn't have central heat and air, but it's affordable and will be paid of in 6.5 years.

      All I can say is WOW. That is an awesome story.
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      • #63
        I hear you, sister. Mr. Justice and I have been looking for about three years. We can't find anyplace that's just right. There are a couple lovely farms in the area with indoors, but there are owned by people in their 60s who aren't ready to sell. I am pushing 40, and Mr. Justice has pointed out that it is now or never. We have come to the conclusion that we may need get a little more flexible in terms of what we can live with. Or a lot more flexible. It seems silly to build when the market is so soft here in the Midwest. And, we can't find land worth building on in the area we want anyway. I am going off to look to see how much it costs to build an indoor arena, which is why I wandered into this forum in the first place
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        • #64
          All I can say is that I hope cash buyers find our farm that will be listed on Friday.
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          • #65
            I would like a cash buyer also. I hate banks. They are afraid of their own shadows.


            • #66
              I don't get it... some friends sold a house in 2 days after going on the market. Those people backed out, another contract was signed less than 2 hours after the first ones backed out, 6 others wanted to make offers but the house was under contract by that point.

              it was a VA/FHA loan. It appraised at 11,000 under the sales price. The appraiser used a comp from may 2012 (more than 6 months back) Also, VA/FHA loans stick to your house for 6 months. It's not in your favor to accept one of these loans since the appraisal stays with your house for so long. Conventional is different...

              So tell me... when does supply and demand start driving home prices? Those people could have had a bidding war and it would have meant nothing due to the appraiser.
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              • #67
                Originally posted by FreshAir View Post
                I would like a cash buyer also. I hate banks. They are afraid of their own shadows.
                It depends on the type of loan. Medium sized properties that aren't sized to be full-time working farms but are still "jumbo" mortgages can really send underwriters running for the 'burbs. After making bad loans for years, residential lenders have zero tolerance for risk so they stick to the easiest transactions only. Having a big chunk of cash to put down helps but won't solve all problems.

                If financing is part of the issue, I suggest you call local banks and see what they'll offer for a portfolio loan. While residential mortgage divisions were nervous about the my wife's income (she runs 3 businesses) and the fact we'd supplement our income with a few boarders, the portfolio dept of a local bank saw her experience running the business as a strength.

                As I speak of my situation - we're not yet settled on either our sale or our purchase, but I can say that until we made many phone calls including portfolio lenders we didn't find what we considered to be good options.

                Where I am located, people are not selling houses in hours/days. Inventory is a little low on the whole but it's extremely local in nature. My brother sold his townhome in NoVa in 2 days, and the only reason is that townhomes in that price range in that location were scarce. With few builders active now, these pockets of undersupply can be very favorable to a seller. But it's not average.

                it was a VA/FHA loan. It appraised at 11,000 under the sales price. The appraiser used a comp from may 2012 (more than 6 months back) Also, VA/FHA loans stick to your house for 6 months. It's not in your favor to accept one of these loans since the appraisal stays with your house for so long. Conventional is different...

                So tell me... when does supply and demand start driving home prices? Those people could have had a bidding war and it would have meant nothing due to the appraiser.
                I couldn't agree more. The current appraisal situation and number of contracts contingent on appraised values is artificially braking the recovery of home prices.

                A cash buyer would be a dream now - our home sale took over a year and we still got dinged at the very end by a slightly low appraisal. (technically it's nonsense to make a contract contingent on a raw appraised value, as appraisals are intended to be a market average, accurate to +/-3% - so a raw appraised price screws the seller exactly 50% of the time). My advice to a seller is to never agree to a pure appraised price unless the buyer's lender absolutely requires it - at least permit a few percent off the appraised value before contingency kicks in. When the appraisal is high, the seller gains nothing and the buyer is happy; when the appraisal is low, the buyer is in a very strong position to force the seller to take the lower value. In the new regs, the appraiser is random and has no knowledge of your contracts' agreed value, so even if they're very accurate, they will blindly lower the price of half of all contracts. Worse yet, in a market of recovering prices it slows recovery because current contract values get compared to months old sale prices, putting constant downward pressure recovering home prices. While none of this is big news, even experienced realtors will agree that the new appraisal process changes the dynamic of many transactions and puts a seller in a very difficult position to get a sale at the supposedly-increasing market value. Enough of my ranting - good luck.


                • #68
                  pick an area you like and start mailing offers of interest to the addresses; we get any where from none to eight offers of interest a year from mostly private individuals.... the higher the gas prices get the more often we receive a letter stating if you are interested in selling any time soon they would be interested in buying.... in the thirty years we have lived in this area nearly 100% of the places around us never get listed being sold as a private sale; the average time on the market is a few days.


                  • #69
                    We are closing on our beautiful farm next month. we looked casually for a couple of years and just over this past winter decided we were going to start seriously looking at places. I found out about it through a student - he is friends with the seller who did not have it listed but was preparing to list it. We actually weren't quite ready to buy as we needed to sell our current home. But the second we set foot on the property we knew it was the one. We listed our house immediately and it sold in 24 hours for asking price, so we were able to put in an offer quickly.

                    Seems like it was meant to be for us. I do have to say that searching had been frustrating, it seemed like anything worth buying at all was out of our price range. We got lucky with our place as it is a bit unusual but perfect for us.


                    • #70
                      wow, i sure hope we have that kind of luck selling. ours has been on the market since the first of march and we've had two showings.
                      sadly the folks who love it and made a full price offer need owner financing and we are not able to offer it.
                      we all are praying they find a lender---guess jingles wouldn't hurt if there are any lying around lately...


                      • Original Poster

                        I saw this post was back up and was like "huh?" We bought a farm last year. ZOMBIE THREAD!

                        Good luck to all the current buyers and sellers out there!
                        DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                        • #72
                          One thing to mention about cash buyers is that many of them tend to make very low cash offers. The exception to this would be someone so wealthy they'd offer you the asking price in cash! The seller has to decide if he or she want to take the low cash offer, or wait for a better offer to come along, even if the people offering more have to screw around with finding financing, getting the place appraised, etc.
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