Acreage in Tennessee's still unspoiled Morgan County and at great terms. This Tennessee land is offered with owner financing- NO BANK QUALIFY: Contract for deed with $5,000 down, $475 a month for 12 years, 7.5% APR, $50,000 total sales price. Cash or bank financing, $45,000. This is land only. 9.3 beautiful acres facing the Cumberland Plateau. Surrounded by mature trees with pasture lands in the center, this perfect setting has a well, septic system, and electricity on site.
The land also has a creek running through it. It is very private. It is perfect for horses, to bring your own trailer, or build a home.
Above is the original ad for the property we bought that we came across last June (07') on EAST TENNESSEE LAND FOR SALE BY OWNER. It was a four hour trip to check it out from Atlanta, so one Sunday we drove up.
Buying a piece of raw land is not an easy process. Especially for something such as homesteading, where you're in it long-term, it's not just an investment on the side. It's difficult to figure out the exact spot on the globe where you want to permanently settle down. In our case we would have never guessed we'd end up in Tennessee. You have to be open-minded, let "fate" or whatever take its course, not get too attached to one area, and you need a lot of patience. Cash helps also.
And he did. He faxed the contract signed, and called us to make sure we got it. We were actually on the way to the beach for a short vacation, so we didn't get the contract. But we were thrilled we'd got the property, so we decided to celebrate and take the kids to Disneyworld. We dropped a grand there, but overall it was a pretty good time.
When we returned we moved on to the next step - checking out the contingencies. We'd put two contingencies in the contract which would void it if they didn't check out. One was the title. My wife had arranged for a third party title company to go over the contract, investigate and insure the title, and take care of all the legal stuff. She'd written in to the contract that the seller would split the cost of this with us. So it ended up costing us each about $350. But you've got to protect yourself, especially in the case of owner-financing, and sort of do it by the book. Too much money's at stake. So as long as the title checked out as legitimate and the seller had no liens and the property had been fully paid off, that contingency was meant.
The other contingency was the water. We wanted to have a well inspection. We firstly wanted to make sure the well had water, if so how much, what quality, and what state was the pump in. If there were no water that would seriously devalue the property for us, and we would have to either alter or abandon our offer. The seller had given us 60 days to satisfy these contingencies.
I called around, and ended up hiring a guy who worked for a well company to go out and inspect it. His price was $180 and I thought reasonable. He'd drive out there and hook the pump up to a generator, monitor the flow, and do an analysis of the water quality.
He called me back and said he ran the water for an hour, it flowed at 12 gallons a minute, the pump worked fine. But he said the water had a slight sulfer odor to it (i.e. rotten eggs), and was very high in iron, it tasted like metal. He said these things were common for the area and could be removed through filtration. But the price on the filter? $1,800. This was a blow to us, and we reconsidered for a while. I wrote a short note to the seller telling them the results of our well inspection, and that we were not expecting this kind of cost, showing a little disappointment here. My hope was maybe they'd knock a little off the price for the cost of the filter, maybe come halfway. But they wrote back coolly that all the water in east Tennessee has sulfer and iron, and what do we want to do? It was obvious they were old pros at this, and weren't budging, as far as price. So I wrote back saying the contingencies were met, and let's set a date for closing and signing all the paperwork.
This was done a month later, and we didn't even have to go up there. The title company took care of everything, via fax and phone. The property was now officially ours. Now it was time to start working on it.
As a postscript to the above, when I was looking for the original ad for this property, I went to the website EAST TENNESSEE LAND FOR SALE BY OWNER and came across their page of testimonials. And half way down this is what I found:
I just wanted to write a short note to say Thank You. I listed my property located in Sunbright TN back in the beginning of June. We are scheduled to close on the property August 6, 2007. We had several people contact us, and we had three people making offers, before we accepted an offer very close to our asking price. Your website Easttennland.com allowed us to sell our property very quickly. My wife and I thought it was very reasonably priced. Thank Thank you for telling us about your website.
Sincerely, Neil Whiticar
So that whole time we were negotiating with this guy and he had other offers! We were actually competing with other buyers! We had thought this property was going nowhere, that this area was dead in the water, that these sellers were desperate and would latch on to anything. It just goes to show you that land is always hot, and the prices keep escalating.
[For more info on buying rural property, see How To Buy Raw Land]