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How to sell a Food Forest?

Dana Smith
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I have a 2.5 acre Food Forest with home here in Southwest Florida. It is two years old (the food forest, the home was built in 2003) and I have worked very hard on it and it is flourishing. The time has come for my family to move but now I must sell. The thing is, I don't want to sell to just anyone as I want this Food Forest to continue to flourish. Does anyone have any suggestions on the best way to sell it? It's a 2600 square foot home, barn, 2.5 acres of food forest with over 350 food producing trees. Zone 9b.

Thanks for any ideas!
Dana Food Forest.jpg
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james Apodaca
Posts: 57
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If i were in any position to buy anything other than dreams (hey, they are free) i would definitely be interested in just the information you have provided. I would, at least, have investigated your property listing.

The extent of the diversity available on your property might be good to add in your listing. Not necessarily the exact types or locations (until i bought it.. Then you can provide locations and varietal information) but listing that you have cultivated several banana varieties, Barbados cherries, sugar cane. Definitely your largest producers and maybe your rarer hard to find plants.. Don't forget your favorite features..

Try looking up garden wedding venues and see how they market their "dreams" to young couples with the money.

I would also want to know your experience with the water feature and what is it's source? Does it harbor fish suitable for eating? If so what; Catfish/Breem/Crawdads? or is it a big Agg irigation canal to be avoided at all costs for food purposes?

The first thing I look for, with anything over 0.23 acres, are the features of the land. You definitely have alot there to evaluate.

The last thing i would ask myself I'd what is my time frame? am i in the position to wait and sell my dream to another tree loving permie (ha!) or are there extenuating circumstances where i need to move quick? Ensuring the continuation of what you started Is obviously important but you may not find the quality if buyer if you don't have the time to invest.

Including any perennial blooming/fruiting pictures in your listing might be advantageous as well as the buyer can experience the same with little effort on their part..

My $0.02 as a layman, i hope it helps you find a spark.
Dana Smith
Posts: 3
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Thank you so much for your insight James, I appreciate it! You give a lot to work on. Do you think people who would be interested in a Food Forest like this would find it via normal MLS listings or some other way? I guess my question is, where do I list/advertise it?

For the record, here's the planted trees:

2x Almond - Garden Prince Dwarf
Apple - Anna
2x Apple - Pettingill
2x Apple - Sundowner
Apricot - Gold Kist
Avocado - Bacon
Avocado - Beta
Avocado - Brazos Belle
Avocado - Brogdon
Avocado - Catalina
Avocado - Choquette
Avocado - Doni
Avocado - Expedition
Avocado - Fantastic
Avocado - Florida Hass
Avocado - Haas
Avocado - Hall
Avocado - Joey
Avocado - Lila
Avocado - Marcus Pumpkin
2x Avocado - Mexicola
Avocado - Monroe - DIED
Avocado - Pancho
Avocado - Russel
Avocado - Seedling
2x Avocado - Simmonds
Avocado - Winter Mexican
3x Bamboo
7x Banana - Apple
9x Banana - Dwarf Orinoco
Banana - Dwarf Cavendish
9x Banana - Dwarf Namwah
Banana - Goldfinger
Banana - Hua Moa
Banana - Hua Moa
3x Banana - Ice Cream
2x Banana - Pisang Ceylon
2x Banana - Red
Banana - Saba
Banana - Sweetheart
2x Banana - Vente
Banana - Williams Hybrid
3x Banana - Zan Moreno
Black Pepper
Cacao - Orange
Cacao - Yellow
3x Cherry - Barbados
2x Cherry - Minnie Royal
2x Cherry - Royal Lee
4x Chestnut - Dunstan
3x Chestnut - Malabar
2x Custard Apple - Red
2x Dragon Fruit - Red
2x Dragon Fruit - Yellow
Dragon Fruit - Unknown
2x Egg Fruit
Fig - Brown Turkey
Fig - Ischia
Fig - Osborn Prolific
Fig - Texas Everbearing
Fig - White Kadota
Kinkoji - Grapefruit
2x Grapefruit - Ruby Red
2x Grumichama
Guava - Barbie Pink
Guava - Cattley (Strawberry)
Guava - Cattley (Lemon)
Guava - Ruby Supreme
Guava - Asian White
Hog Plum - Red
6x Jaboticaba
2x Jak Fruit
2x Jujube
5x June Plum
Kumquat - Centennial
Lemon - Meyer
Lemon - Vernia
Lime - Kefir
Longan - Unknown
Longan - Kohala
Longan - Sri Chompoo
5x Loquat
2x Loquat - Ed's Delight
3x Lychee - Brewster
Lychee - Hak Ip
Lychee - Sweetheart
4x Macadamia Nut - Beaumont
Macadamia Nut - Dana White
Mandarin Orange - Mucrott
Mango - Glenn
Mango - Alfonso
Mango - Haden
Mango - Seedling
Monstera Delicioso
50x+ Moringa
2x Mulberry - Everbearing
3x Mulberry - Black
Nectarine - Sunracer
2x Nectarine - Sunhome
Olive - Arbequina
Olive - Chemlali
Olive - Cortina
2x Orange - Blood
Orange - Hamlin
Orange - Fischers Navel
Orange - Shiranui
Orange - Temple
2x Orange - Valencia
8x Papaya
40+ Passion Fruit
Peach - Florida Prince
Peach - Tropic Beauty
2x Peach - Tropic Snow
Peach - Flordaglo
Peach - UF Sun
Peach - UF Sun
Peach - UF Sun
Peach - Unknown
Peach - Unknown
2x Pear - Flordahome
2x Pear - Hood
2x Persimmons – Hachiya
50+ Pigeon Pea
2x Pitomba
Plantain - Super
2x Plum - Methley
3x Plum - Scarlett Beauty
2x Plum - Gulf Gold
2x Pomegranate - Ambrosia
Pomegranate - Christiana
Pummelo - Horado
Quince - Pineapple
Sapodilla - M?
Sapote - Black
Sapote - Black
Sapote - White
2x Soursop
2x Starfruit - Kiri
Strawberry Tree
2x Sugar Apple
Sugar Cane
Tangelo - Honeybell
Tangerine - Fallglo
Chris Badgett
Posts: 289
Location: Whitefish, Montana
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To help sell it, you should definitely create a video and put it on Youtube. "Show don't tell." You can create a video with just still images if you want. The important thing is to optimize the title, description, transcript, and tags for maximum exposure. You can also promote the video through paid means like https://www.youtube.com/yt/advertise/, Facebook ads targeted at permaculture folks, etc. But there are a lot of free ways to promote and simply share your video as well.

I sold a unique off the grid 20 acre property with a cabin I built in Alaska in this way. In a month I had about 10,000 views on Youtube and sold the property to the perfect buyer. I also turned a big profit. Keep in mind I bought before the recession and sold after. The main thing was demonstrating the value of the small improvements I made and the uniqueness of the land, which is critical - like with your food forest.

After my success with this kind of marketing, I became a realtor for a while and continued to sell properties in this way for my clients. Now I build websites (often for Realtors) http://badgettwebdesign.com and cocreate and sell online permaculture courses with experts in the field: http://organiclifeguru.com

Here's a 45 minute audio training I created on how to sell real estate with online video. I normally sell this for $27, but for the food forest cause ... here you go:

Download link: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/51459753/How%20To%20Sell%20Real%20Estate%20With%20Online%20Video.mp3



james Apodaca
Posts: 57
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Wow, that's awesome.

Honestly, given my layman disclaimer in my previous post, I wouldn't know. I've never bought or sold real property. But I do look.. frequently.

The only thing I have to go on as a potential buyer are listings that I browse on the internet (as local ads/books are usually houses in the surrounding city). I'm constantly looking on things like Zilllow.com (I travel around the State a lot and I'm a bit nosy), Land Auction websites, Agg Property Listings, and MLS listings for land < 5ac. so that I know what to expect when I do decide i'm in a position to put in roots of my own.

I've never tried searching for keywords like "food forest" or "permaculture" on a listing service nor have I ever identified a property like yours through those services. However I have come across listings where they advertise orchards or groves (being from Florida as well) and honestly given the current state of agriculture I already know what that entails.. again especially around Florida.. land with poor soil planted with row after row of petro-chemical laden trees bearing the same fruit needing the same half-dead trucked in bees every year.. the multi-million dollar 2000 acre property for livestock OR the .23-1.0 acre lot with a sliver of a back yard butted up next to the neighborhood Wal-mart.

Setting yourself apart on local/internet/agg listings is something that you could easily do with the property you have described regardless of the Realtor service. Given the survival / self sufficiency / small family farm movement afoot country wide I'm sure there are plenty of folks that would at least take an interest in your property if you could find an affordable nation wide listing.

Sounds to me like there is a niche real estate network that needs to be filled. Food for thought for any enterprising individual(s).
David Livingston
Posts: 2501
Location: Anjou ,France
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I think you have a good idea there!
Hey Paul how about it?
Have a seperate permie realtor section. People CAN sell there permie property to other permies. Of course a little something for the empire if a deal works out. You could also post a property you know about that would suit someone if you see one for sale near you.

Sounds a good idea to me

Dana Smith
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Thank you all!

For the record, anyone who referred me a seller, I'd give 1% of the selling price to. Whether that be this site or a member here.

Chris, thanks for giving that for free! What would you suggest I title my video for something like this?

Again, thank you all!
Chris Badgett
Posts: 289
Location: Whitefish, Montana
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Hey Dana,

The video title should have important keywords in it like:

Florida permaculture
food forest
green homes for sale

Florida Green Homes For Sale: A Permaculture Food Forest Farm Property on 2.5 Acres

Matu Collins
Posts: 1968
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
bee books chicken forest garden fungi trees
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I wonder if there is some business person slaving away in some horrible dreary cold city wishing for a food forest in Florida!

I have a friend with a stunning waterfront permaculture property here complete with mature fruit trees and bushes and snug bands for the animals but she's having trouble seeking it through the normal channels. It's too valuable with the waterfront for anyone who wants to do the work of a farm.

I like the YouTube idea. Also maybe interesting ads in the back of the right magazines.

Do you have a regular MLS listing?
John Saltveit
Posts: 1899
bike books food preservation forest garden fungi trees
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I think the video is a great idea. I tried to sell mine. No one bought it as a permaculture place 4 years ago, so I just sold it to a guy who I think douses everything with chemicals. He may be intrigued by the assortment of fruit though. Good luck,
John S
Wayne Mackenzie
Posts: 98
Location: Sunizona Az., USA @ 4,400' Zone 8a
greening the desert
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The buyer better love Guacamole.
Jessica Gorton
Posts: 274
Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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Put it up where ever you can. Put together some good pictures, a video, a couple of great descriptions (one short and to the point, one with more detail), make sure the descriptions have links to the video and a photo gallery.

Put it up on craigslist.

Here's a site that I just found (the site is from Australia, but there were listings from all over) that looks to be free (I haven't tried it, so buyer beware): http://www.small-farm-permaculture-and-sustainable-living.com/organic_farms_for_sale.html

If you have money to market, there's sites like greenhomesforsale.com. I remember looking on there when I was searching for land.

Do you have local meet-ups or farming organizations that might have members interested in this sort of thing? Without being pushy or seeming like a spammer, you could let those communities know this property is available...

mofga.net has a listing section...it's Maine centered, but I've seen listings from "away" on it. Maybe somebody up here is looking to run away to the tropics! http://www.mofga.net/Forums/tabid/56/afv/topicsview/aff/26/Default.aspx

Make a flyer and hang it up at the local gardening center, the local hippie bookstore, etc.

How about other gardening forums online? This is the only community I'm active in, but there's places like gardenweb and homesteadingtoday. Just make sure that you read their TOS and forum rules so you don't step on any toes.

When I was looking, it was often through "regular" channels too, realtor.com etc...
Miles Flansburg
Posts: 3598
Location: Zones 2-4 Wyoming and 4-5 Colorado
bee books forest garden fungi greening the desert hugelkultur
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Dana, where is it?
Is that a canal in the pictures? Does it go to the gulf or atlantic?
Have you set a price?
What a great place!
S. Saucier
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I am interested but I need more information. Please contact me.
matt hogan
Posts: 71
Location: Tennesse, an hour west of Nashville, zone 7
chicken hunting
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There is also a site called Survival Realty. I would imagine it costs to post it there, but i am uncertain.
Consider Paul's rocket stove mass heater.
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