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Cheap land in New Jersey? Is it possible?  RSS feed

 
Felicia Daniels
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My mother & I are torn between California & New Jersey. We have a small farm here in Alabama and we're trying to decide where to move. But since this is an eastern forum I thought you guys might be able to help me figure out if it's possible to get cheap land in NJ? Within 1 to 1 1/2 hr drive to Manhattan. Cheap meaning only a couple thousand or under for at least a couple of acres.
 
Peter Ellis
Posts: 1432
Location: Central New Jersey
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Hate to have to put it this way, but at that price you are barely making your annual tax payments in New Jersey, much less buying land.

New Jersey real estate taxes are driving flight from the state. All of New Jersey is within an hour or two of at least one of New York City, Philadelphia or Washington DC.

This means pretty much all of NJ is being subjected to suburban sprawl.

You have a better chance of finding something that might be close to that range in New York state, going north of NYC.

You should understand, an hour and a half is commuting distance into NYC, so land values are impacted by that. Go to two hours and you can see a drop off.
 
Jessica Gorton
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Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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I have to agree with Peter - land values and property taxes are going to be outrageous anywhere you go in Jersey, and probably within a couple of hours of L.A. as well (I'm from NJ, so I can't really speak to Cali with any authority). You will also be moving to an area that is almost completely covered in suburban sprawl.

Can I ask why you are focused on those two cities? Is there a job there for you, or is there another reason? No offense to my old home state or Hollywood, but those are two of the last places that I would think of to move to to do permaculture. If you are looking for big markets for crops, there are plenty of other cities in the country that would suit. If you really need to live near one of those two, and still want to be involved in permaculture, I would suggest renting a house or apartment in an area with good public transit, and then getting involved in local lots-to-garden movements or the like. That's what I would do - commit to the urban environment, and make a commitment to the local foodways and sustainable greening of the city itself.

And do check out New York State, but I'm pretty sure that values there are high too, unless you go pretty far north or west.
 
Felicia Daniels
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Jessica Gorton wrote:I have to agree with Peter - land values and property taxes are going to be outrageous anywhere you go in Jersey, and probably within a couple of hours of L.A. as well (I'm from NJ, so I can't really speak to Cali with any authority). You will also be moving to an area that is almost completely covered in suburban sprawl.

Can I ask why you are focused on those two cities? Is there a job there for you, or is there another reason? No offense to my old home state or Hollywood, but those are two of the last places that I would think of to move to to do permaculture. If you are looking for big markets for crops, there are plenty of other cities in the country that would suit. If you really need to live near one of those two, and still want to be involved in permaculture, I would suggest renting a house or apartment in an area with good public transit, and then getting involved in local lots-to-garden movements or the like. That's what I would do - commit to the urban environment, and make a commitment to the local foodways and sustainable greening of the city itself.

And do check out New York State, but I'm pretty sure that values there are high too, unless you go pretty far north or west.


We are focused on these two because we are both getting into acting (stage as well as film). The reason for wanting to buy land is because we're researching building a tiny house on wheels that we can move to the land & use solar & possibly rain harvesting so that we don't have any utility bills. We don't want to pay rent & another reason is because we have many animals that we will be bringing with us. We currently live on an acre of land in Alabama & we have several cats, 3 dogs & 5 chickens. We're also looking into getting goats. In order to buy at least a couple acres of land (more would be awesome) and be able to travel to these 2 cities (depending on which state we choose) how much $ would you suggest we try & save. It will be at least 1 or possibly 2 years before we move. We're budgeting around $2500-$3000 to build our tiny house but we don't know for sure if it will end up costing us more or less. It will cost about $2000 or so to build the new pens at the new location. So we're looking at about $5000 or so just for these 2 main things. Anything else we save would be able to go towards where we move. We're also both vegetarians so we would mainly be growing veggies & fruit & some beans. We use table gardens to grow our food so we wouldn't need to rely on the ground for that at our new place.
 
Felicia Daniels
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We would love to be able to move to our new place and not have to have jobs & just be able to rely on the food we grow & the solar panels & rain for our needs but with the animals we would have to work in order to be able to feed them. Not sure if this last part is important or relevant or not but just wanted to throw it out there in case anyone has a situation like ours & doesn't have a job but makes it work & could offer tips.
 
Su Ba
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Location: Big Island, Hawaii (2300' elevation, 60" avg. annual rainfall, temp range 55-80 degrees F)
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I use to live in NJ for most of my life. At least up until 12 years ago, the only cheap land was bog, marsh, unusable Pinelands, or under water. When I left NJ the lowest general price for undeveloped land was $8000/acre. And that wasn't close to NYC. The closer you get to NYC, the more the land will cost.

Perhaps you may wish to consider leasing land for a few years especially since you're not established in the area. One never knows if their employment plans will work out, so why be tied to real estate you'd only have to try to resell? Another benefit of leasing or renting land, you'll be living in the area and thus be able to search around for the right property to sell. Land bargains get snatched up quickly, so you have to be on the spot to see them and snatch. Long distance buyers almost never get the opportunity on land bargains.
 
Felicia Daniels
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Su Ba wrote:I use to live in NJ for most of my life. At least up until 12 years ago, the only cheap land was bog, marsh, unusable Pinelands, or under water. When I left NJ the lowest general price for undeveloped land was $8000/acre. And that wasn't close to NYC. The closer you get to NYC, the more the land will cost.

Perhaps you may wish to consider leasing land for a few years especially since you're not established in the area. One never knows if their employment plans will work out, so why be tied to real estate you'd only have to try to resell? Another benefit of leasing or renting land, you'll be living in the area and thus be able to search around for the right property to sell. Land bargains get snatched up quickly, so you have to be on the spot to see them and snatch. Long distance buyers almost never get the opportunity on land bargains.


How much it would cost to lease at least 1 acre of land w/in the distance we want to Manhattan? And would someone let us lease with the number of animals we have?
 
Su Ba
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I have no idea. I'm only familiar with farmland in South Jersey. North Jersey is a whole different story. Maybe contact several real estate agents and find out who handles land rentals. Not every agent works with rentals and farmland leases. You might also place ads occasionally in the Asbury Press. Or perhaps contact the New Jersey Farm Bureau to get suggestions on where to advertise that you are looking to rent a small piece of farmland. Craigslist might be another option to put out some feelers. Or maybe join wwoofers so that you can access the private area and talk with owners of small farms in your target area. Farms sometimes will rent out a section or know of someone who wants to. Finding land rentals may be difficult doing it long distance. When you're local, it's simply a case of going to the local feedmills and farm supply stores and putting the word out. When I belonged to my local farm associations, deals land rentals were often talked up at the meetings.
 
Felicia Daniels
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Su Ba wrote:I have no idea. I'm only familiar with farmland in South Jersey. North Jersey is a whole different story. Maybe contact several real estate agents and find out who handles land rentals. Not every agent works with rentals and farmland leases. You might also place ads occasionally in the Asbury Press. Or perhaps contact the New Jersey Farm Bureau to get suggestions on where to advertise that you are looking to rent a small piece of farmland. Craigslist might be another option to put out some feelers. Or maybe join wwoofers so that you can access the private area and talk with owners of small farms in your target area. Farms sometimes will rent out a section or know of someone who wants to. Finding land rentals may be difficult doing it long distance. When you're local, it's simply a case of going to the local feedmills and farm supply stores and putting the word out. When I belonged to my local farm associations, deals land rentals were often talked up at the meetings.


Great suggestions! Maybe we'll have some good luck! Thanks!!
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