Looking for ground in Ohio, Kentucky…., or a micro property about anywhere a mature buck my roam

Hoytvectrix

5 year old buck +
The land podcast is really good.I heard something just today about buying land now VS 25 years ago.Back then you could serch for the perfect property now if you can get 2 out of 3 things you better buy.I would start with land sites like landwatch to see whats out there
The land podcast is the very best source of info for buying land.
 

Tree Spud

5 year old buck +
Hi Folks.

I have two diverse goals - one is to find some good ground in Ohio or Kentucky to slowly build into a whitetail masterpiece with time and eventually relocate to. Looking for more “rough” than “turn key” and without a substantial dwelling. Prefer it has topography and creek, river or water present. Turnoffs are almost exclusive to disrespecting neighbors- can’t get over that. The goal is to move here in 4-5yrs from NY (where I do own some good deer ground).

Like many I lost my backside with my 401k and looking at asset/equity investment that I can smile about and enjoy. Blue collar dream chasing…

Also looking for a small chase phase kind of property in the Midwest just to have a little slice of Heaven to hunt once or twice a year.

The sole hunting focus of both is mature buck opportunity, not looking to fill a tag every year or having the delusional “Booner behind every tree” dream. I’m a legal eagle who is all about karma and willing to help others. You’d be happy and thankful to have me as a neighbor. I also know how many will
giggle at the forward nature of this post; I’m trying to keep faith and rather try this than talk to another less than valuable realtor.

So if you have a piece from 5-500 for sale, that’s cheap and loaded with giant deer (hahaha- being a Jackwagon here) OR any input, advise, or thoughts please reach out w a message or post here.

Thank you so much.

Based on your "needs" list, I'll assume you have $1 million plus to spend. If not, you should realign your expectations to your budget.

As someone said above, you need to understand the real cost of owning a 2nd property/home ... PITA. Principle, interest, taxes, & insurance will be your fixed annual costs. Then add deer stands, ATV, food plot stuff, etc. I have seen many people buy and then 2-3 years later sell because they over leveraged themselves. If you debt free, that is a good start but understand your future life costs.

Most of us who have successful hunting properties started small 20, 40, 60 acres that were not anywhere near prime. Marsh/swamp, un-desirable woodlots, etc. but that is what we could afford. It took years of paying off debt, investing tons of sweat equity with poor tools, and learning that neighbors (no matter how much you help them) are sometimes your biggest threat to developing a property. I would rather have a small property surrounded by larger parcels, then a large property surrounded by smaller parcels.

You are entering the recreational land at a very high point in land values, and high mortgage rates, in the midwest you can expect to pay ~$2500-3,000/acre for just vacant land that has marginal timber and very little plantable ground, good ground without ag $3-$4k, stuff with Ag land probably going to start around $5-6k/acre. Some times for smaller parcel >100 acres, the price tag can be much higher. Other issues ... what are property taxes, how will rising mortgages rates affect you? If you are expecting charity, you have a long learning curve as sellers know the value given the internet and open network listing services.

Sounds like you have a lot of homework to do. You need to zero down your geographic search to a state and then research the counties to figured out if you can afford what to want. Then zero in on a county or 2 and check out all relator sites and learn the cost per acre per features. Start out small, quickly pay off, and use existing property to leverage your next purchase on a larger/better property. Are you in a position to make a cash offer, do you know if you can finance vacant land with a bank, what amount will they pre-approve you? That is what usually gets you the property you want, any decent property will be locked into an accepted offer in days, not weeks. Remember, your not just competing with hunters, you are now competing with all the woke kiddies & eco nuts who think they are going to live off grid.

Good luck!
 

Garrett S

5 year old buck +
Very familiar with Landwatch and the Land podcast. Some good info for sure and really appreciate Jakes approach.

Too many of the realtors I’ve chatted with are just entry level deer hunters or “land slingers” capitalizing on the bonkers market at the moment. Not sure I’ve been that impressed with a realtor yet.

I’m not giving up on word of mouth or trying to network toward a sale- whether that seems like idiotic persistence or not, I’m working with what I have. Again, the folks with bucks on trucks selling land seem to just mark it up more.
 

Garrett S

5 year old buck +
Based on your "needs" list, I'll assume you have $1 million plus to spend. If not, you should realign your expectations to your budget.

As someone said above, you need to understand the real cost of owning a 2nd property/home ... PITA. Principle, interest, taxes, & insurance will be your fixed annual costs. Then add deer stands, ATV, food plot stuff, etc. I have seen many people buy and then 2-3 years later sell because they over leveraged themselves. If you debt free, that is a good start but understand your future life costs.

Most of us who have successful hunting properties started small 20, 40, 60 acres that were not anywhere near prime. Marsh/swamp, un-desirable woodlots, etc. but that is what we could afford. It took years of paying off debt, investing tons of sweat equity with poor tools, and learning that neighbors (no matter how much you help them) are sometimes your biggest threat to developing a property. I would rather have a small property surrounded by larger parcels, then a large property surrounded by smaller parcels.

You are entering the recreational land at a very high point in land values, and high mortgage rates, in the midwest you can expect to pay ~$2500-3,000/acre for just vacant land that has marginal timber and very little plantable ground, good ground without ag $3-$4k, stuff with Ag land probably going to start around $5-6k/acre. Some times for smaller parcel >100 acres, the price tag can be much higher. Other issues ... what are property taxes, how will rising mortgages rates affect you? If you are expecting charity, you have a long learning curve as sellers know the value given the internet and open network listing services.

Sounds like you have a lot of homework to do. You need to zero down your geographic search to a state and then research the counties to figured out if you can afford what to want. Then zero in on a county or 2 and check out all relator sites and learn the cost per acre per features. Start out small, quickly pay off, and use existing property to leverage your next purchase on a larger/better property. Are you in a position to make a cash offer, do you know if you can finance vacant land with a bank, what amount will they pre-approve you? That is what usually gets you the property you want, any decent property will be locked into an accepted offer in days, not weeks. Remember, your not just competing with hunters, you are now competing with all the woke kiddies & eco nuts who think they are going to live off grid.

Good luck!

No Mill budget here …

The woke, Bill Gates and commercial farmers are all a challenge. Maybe I’m just an idiot with good faith and intentions but I’m forging on.

A few points made by you and others on next stages (of life and living) needs made which I hadn’t thought of. Great share.

Not debt free yet and perhaps I’m suffering from self imposed urgency, I don’t think land availability will increase or values decrease or I would hold off the next 2.5yrs. Would much rather engage then.

The paring it down to locales is as hard as finding the right property. I don’t know what the right areas are beyond word of mouth, personal experience, record books and trust of others. Todays right spot is tomorrows privy too. Perhaps i am subconsciously believing in divine intervention helping me on a journey that isn’t mapped. I do firmly believe I’ll know it when I see it though.

You have some great ideas and points. Thank you. I appreciate the challenges too.
 

Wind Gypsy

5 year old buck +
I too have been listening to the land podcast. One question aske of Winke and others, paraphrasing here - "are there any up and comers or underappreciated gems still available?" made my mind wander a bit. I have a good college buddy who farms 60k acres in one of those states west of MN. I asked him about recreational land sales to hunters. He said there is very few that he's aware of and based on the size of his operation he would hear about these things. Makes me think about taking a swing out there, would be a lot cheaper than the midwest states.

The down sides to that particular market that may prevent value growth that I can think of:
1. NR rifle tags might as well be non-existent beyond 1 annual gratis tag to landowners having 160 acres or more. I wouldn't be surprised if they eventually got rid of OTC NR archery licenses
2. Not much for towns or really anything else nearby. Not going to see urban sprawl in my lifetime that drives value up out there IMO.

The thought is a guy could buy some marginal ground and put it in CRP or something in a manner that would create cover (which is sparse out there) and at least cover the taxes and a little extra. Maybe not crazy value appreciation but have a steady hold of value and get some recreational value from it. The reasons I don't think I can pull the trigger are that a residential rental would probably be a better money decision, i don't have time to maintain additional property, and there is no need for hunting property where i already have access to thousands of acres via my friend's farm. I also don't see much for sale out there so it would probably be a situation where contacting owners of various properties might be required.
 

Wind Gypsy

5 year old buck +
Another thought i found intriguing frequently discussed on the land podcast - How much is value tied to the quality of the whitetail hunting?

An example frequently used is IA recreational land being tied to value of giant whitetails. What if they go all MN and decide they want everyone to have participation trophies (rifle season in the peak of the rut) or shoot the piss out of them anywhere CWD pops up? or chronic EHD breakouts begin to occur? What happens to your land investment then? Maybe Ohio and Kentucky are safer against some of those instances? seems like Kentucky already has pretty liberal season structure and there is still good age structure in places.
 

b116757

5 year old buck +
In the last inflation period 1969-1982 or so median home prices where $10,000 at the beginning and $86,000 by the end real estate is a good place to ride out inflation. what’s that old Chinese curse “May you live in interesting times”
 

Hoytvectrix

5 year old buck +
Another thought i found intriguing frequently discussed on the land podcast - How much is value tied to the quality of the whitetail hunting?

An example frequently used is IA recreational land being tied to value of giant whitetails. What if they go all MN and decide they want everyone to have participation trophies (rifle season in the peak of the rut) or shoot the piss out of them anywhere CWD pops up? or chronic EHD breakouts begin to occur? What happens to your land investment then? Maybe Ohio and Kentucky are safer against some of those instances? seems like Kentucky already has pretty liberal season structure and there is still good age structure in places.
This may or may not be related to this thread, but this brings up an interesting thought all together and may be better suited in its own thread. I was getting the impression in the podcast that the phenomenon of land prices being tied to the quality of hunting was very anecdotal. I think that was initially true with Pike county and a few other well-known hotspots. The last two to three years have probably leveled off those differences. With work from home and off-grid resources increasing, the desire for recreational land is probably only going to increase, regardless of the quality of deer hunting.

It would probably be as simple as regressing Boone and Crockett and Pope and Young bucks by average county land price. I would be shocked if someone is not already calculating this. From a real estate investment point of view, It would probably be the safest strategy for an already fairly conservative investment.
 

Rit

5 year old buck +
Good read Gents.
 

b116757

5 year old buck +
I think if your in the right location and make improvements such as tree plantings you can most definitely command a premium price for hunting land but marketing would make a big difference and actual kills of large bucks or at least game photos that can be confirmed from said property would certainly help the sale price. There are lots of folks looking for their little slice of heaven just need to connect with those with means and sell your product. I bought a 40 acre parcel boarding national forest as a young man gave $19,000 my buddies dad thought my brother and I where bat shit crazy to pay so much. We sold it for $80,000 a few years latter but we advertised it in the Milwaukee paper and Chicago Tribune this was after logging it and pulling several thousand dollars worth of hard maple and basswood off of it. I saw it again for sale a couple years ago for $50,000 I almost bought it back a second time.
 

WhiteoakJoe

Yearling... With promise
The Property I see selling now is not old intact tracts, but sections of "unused" farm ground in my area (Southern Indiana). Farmers with acreage that is untillable that will part with for some much needed cash flow. Or a CRP field that got away from them, and they don't want to hire equipment to bring back to tillable. You might try a Google Earth search for pockets of timber in ag areas and reach out to the landowners? I know a few that have sold land for residences and hunting in the past few years, all it takes is a bad drought to make a chunk of untillable land on a farm a cash cow for a farmer looking to make up income. The Realtors have stepped up their game, and now special Agencies with hunting as a specialty grab up representation of most of these now, so the market is tough.
 
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