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Thread: This guy was a brilliant land developer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    The Heart of Dixie

    This guy was a brilliant land developer

    Appraising several pieces of property for a client. Went to a large waterfront development today to see a couple of pieces of property. First one was the lower end property. Nice lot in the 'public' part of the development. Most of the lots are level or gentle slopes. Nice area.

    Then I drove around the point to see the other lot. It is in the exclusive area, gated and very limited access. I was stunned (to say the least) to see how steep, hilly and just undesirable most of the lots where. The one I was appraising would have a very steep driveway down to the house. Rather large lot but it had one building spot and it dropped off rather steeply on both sides. So you would have a small yard and you were up pretty high off the water. But you would have a very nice view of the lake.

    Walking to the back of the lot it was VERY steep down the water. But it had excellent deep water and you could build a dock along the bank and keep your mega yacht there. But you going to have one heck of a set of stairs to climb to get to it. Or your looking at an elevator of sometype.

    Seriously I would not take this lot if you gave it to me and told me that I had to build on. On the way back it hit me, the developer was a stinking genius!

    Knowing the flat level lots would sell he left them in the public areas and he took the worst, least desirable lots and put them behind a gate. Put up a club house, built a bunch of boat slips for the lot located off the water and made the area look and sound 'exclusive'. And of course you can't see any or the area from the entrance. And people with more money than sense go in and pay premium prices for less desirable lots. I want to hire this guy to market for me!
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Outside the beltway
    Jeff that the way it's done around the lakes being developed in Va. But one thing nice about them back lots. Abundant Turkey for the hunters. LOL
    I dream a lot. I do more painting when I'm not painting. It's in the subconscious.
    ::: Andrew Wyeth :::

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Santa Claus, In
    It amazes me what a gate does for property valve and peoples attitude.

    We have Christmas Lake Village around here. High and mighty people living in houses on hill sides, full of termites. When you talk to one of them, it's "I LIVE in the VILLAGE". What they don't know is I framed a lot of those houses. I know how they were built.
    If you don't take pride in your work, life get's pretty boring.

    Rule of thumb is if you donít know what tool to buy next, then you probably donít need it yet.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Northern Lower Michigan/Troll
    The desire to be one of the elite is strong......

    They are falling like flies up here however, hundreds and hundreds of over 1 mill homes in forclosure. I just looked at one for a customer as he wanted a rough estimate of what it would cost to build. A very tasteful house, very, very well built, 4 stories, built in a tough spot on a sand dune overlooking Lake Michigan, 8000 ft plus finished walkout basement. I estimated an aprox. cost of 1.9 mil to build it, and that may be on the conservative side. My estimate did not include the cost of the land.

    The bank that had it threw in three lots that surround it, and my customer bought it for 435K. Not hard to figure out why no one is building new homes up here.........

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Salt Spring Island, BC Canada
    Yea we have something similar here Jeff. It's called bear Mtn Golf course. Every square inch of development being used on the top of a mountain. Of course everyone wants to live near a golf course. don't they? You couldn't pay me enough to live in an area where your neighbor's house is almost right on top of the next house all crammed in nice and tight. Got to hand it to Len Barrie that if you build it they will come and they did.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    New Springfield OH
    I've never understood why people want to live like that.

    I'll stay in my trailer before I would live in of those so called exclusive communities. Why would I want someone else deciding what can and can not do?.

    But Jeff's right the guy is a marketing genius
    Throw Apples out the Windows, but make sure not to hit the Penguin.

    If the world should blow itself up, the last audible voice would be that of an expert saying it canít be done.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Vancouver Island, Courtenay/Comox Valley, British Columbia
    Re: the golf course
    yeah, funny, it's usually very desirable (and expensive). You couldn't pay me to live on one (and I play golf). My mom used to live on one, with her backyard facing the fairway. There was continually damage from balls hitting the deck, the windows, etc. Plus every jerk in town felt totally within his rights to climb into your yard to search for his ball.

    Re: marketing
    often the clientele have more money than brains. when we looked at houses here before moving here (Vancouver Island), we looked at one "5 acre" property with a magnificent view. Unfortunately 1/10 of one acre was flat and 4.9 acres was a steep drop off. Great it you're a mountain goat. useless if you want to garden or have a yard. We looked at one big property on the ocean. "Walk-on waterfront" is what they all say. Usually it's "stumble on" waterfront with boulders the size of cars to climb over to get to the water. Not to mention the steep drop off to get down there. You'd have to rappel down to get there. We looked at one $$$$ property on the ocean, and when I got out of the car, I could see the house was 1 foot from the property line. I said, "don't bother". It was an old home, so the present day zoning and set backs didn't apply. You really wonder what some people are thinking when they price these things. The newer homes were all on teeny tiny lots with a fantastic view of your neighbor. Nope, I'm done with looking at my neighbor. Been there, done that, for all of my adult life. No more. Now my view is of the deer destroying my plantings , but at least I don't have to watch my neighbor. And we settled for something for a lot less $$ and only 2 acres, so we could still afford to make it our own.
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    DSM, IA
    There are quite a few gated and/or exclusive communities around here too...I remember a friend who was looking for a site to build a new house that told me, "They want $150,000, FOR THE DIRT!" I'll never understand that at all.

    I was also at a friends house that lives on a golf course last summer when his 6 year old daughter yelled from outside, "Dad, there's another guy peeing on our bushes again!" No, that wouldn't be for me either, and golf paid for my first 2 years of college!
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    I don't know what draws folks into building on hillsides, but there seems to be no shortage of people like that out here. Having been in a few very nice hillside homes, I've concluded that you'd better like having a lot of stairs in your daily routine to live in a place like that.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Lakeport NY and/or the nearest hotel
    I too could never live in a development situation like that, thankfully I won't have to for the next few years. Still, there are folks who see 'new house' or 'exclusive' as being desirable. I hope to make a fair living off of the process of marketing to them, so I hope they don't change any time soon!

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