Bundoran Farm – Preservation Development Near Charlottesville Virginia

Disclosure: my firm, Nest Realty Group, is marketing Bundoran Farm in conjunction with three other firms in the Charlottesville area. I would be posting about them regardless of any affiliation I might have; I was talking about them in 2007, long before I was with Nest. I was then and am now genuinely interested in  and intrigued by the project (it’s hard to call it a "development").

The New York Times says today in Growing With the Crops, Nearby Property Values:

And in more rural areas, developers are buying big tracts of ranchland and selling small lots to buyers. David Hamilton, a principal in Qroe Farm Preservation Development, is pursuing this approach at the sprawling Bundoran Farm subdivision outside Charlottesville, Va. “We go through a mapping process to see functional agricultural units, if they are good for apples or cattle or whatever, then see where they go together.

Qroe (pronounced “crow”) leases some of the land to cattle ranchers and orchard managers. A buyer of a home site hires a builder from a developer-approved list. Qroe is marketing lots of under four acres for less than $400,000, Mr. Hamilton said. “You’re buying two acres but access to 2,000 acres,” he said.

Grady Lewis, a Virginia native who closed on his 2.67-acre lot in 2007 and moved into his 1,800-square-foot house at Bundoran with his wife, Diane, this spring, responded to Qroe’s idea of preserving “rural quality.”

When all the house lots have been sold, the rental income from the farmers, which currently goes to the developer, will go to the homeowners’ association. “Beyond it being great to see 300 head of Angus scattered across the acres,” Mr. Lewis said, “it’s a cash-flow issue.”

Farm-focused developers must juggle financing a few houses at a time with cultivating crops on a yearly cycle, so many rent farmland to professionals.

And those lots for sale under $400,000?

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