Posts Tagged ‘ranches for sale’

Water and the American Landowner

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Examples of Forward Thinking in Water and Land Conservation

Part 1 of  3

As much of the country is still in the grips of one of the worst droughts on record and water becomes more expensive and scarce, the rural landowner often faces tough decisions on how to best use this valuable resource. In the next three issues of Open Fences Magazine, we will be exploring topics related to water and the American landowner. The following article is the first in this series where we will be discussing and presenting examples of how farm and ranch owners across the country are embracing alternative methods to utilize this resource and still find ways to conserve water, turn a profit, and enhance the quality of their land. In this first article, we will show how one seed rice farm southwest of Houston, Texas has used precision grading to reduce their water usage by up to 40% while still increasing yield and improving the wildlife habitat on the land.

According to the USDA, agriculture is a major user of ground and surface water in the United States that accounts for nearly 80% of the nation’s consumptive water use and over 90% in many of the western states. While there is no question that the food and other products that are sent to market have made this country what it is today, inefficiencies in the system become more apparent when drought affects supply or when other users, such as municipalities, are competing for the resource. The farmers and ranchers who recognize ways to conserve their water use without hurting their operations will be the ones leading us into the future of best management practices for the land.

One of these farmers is Jacko Garrett of Garrett Farms in Danbury, Texas who owns a 3,046-acre farm and ranch where he grows seed rice, live oak trees seedlings, and raises F1 (Brahman x Angus) females and bulls. Approximately 1,500 acres is currently used for the seed rice operation among this lush green, fertile, and well watered landscape.

Mr. Garrett’s parents bought the land back in 1936 for $10 per acre and developed a successful rice farm and Brahman cattle ranch. Today, Garrett Farms is still located on a portion of the original land and Jacko and his wife Nancy have continued the tradition of success. One of the main reasons for this is their dedication, hard work, and willingness to invest in the future.

Jacko realized that even though the rice farm had been successful for all these years, it still required a great deal of water resources and labor to raise this crop. He also understood that water was becoming a precious resource that continued to increase in price and importance to other sectors of society. He felt that it was his responsibility as a farmer and landowner to find ways to minimize these inefficiencies, but still increase his profitability.

While exploring options to improve his bottom line, Jacko learned about the technique called precision grading that could not only help him significantly reduce his water requirements, but also the amount of hired labor to constantly watch and adjust the many levies needed to flood the rice fields.

The technique involves mapping the fields with highly accurate Global Positioning System (GPS) and laser survey equipment, which then displays a contour map on the computer. The engineers can display different options of how the fields should drain and where the levies would now be located prior to moving the first bucket of soil. Jacko was able to consider other land use options, such as where new access roads would be located as well as an airstrip.

The grading had to be done with highly trained equipment operators since the fall of the land had to be contoured to an accuracy of less than 1/8 of an inch. Graders with dump and ejector buckets were used to scrape the ground and move the soil around so the water would drain properly. Jacko estimates that his water usage is now 40% less than what it was prior to the precision grading on his fields and has also increased his yield by approximately 15% as well. With nearly 1,900 acres of his ranch in seed rice and row crop production of which 855 acres has been precision graded, this equates to a great deal of water and cost savings.

As flat as the land seemed prior to the precision grading, there were still small undulations in the ground plane that resulted in variations in depth of the water that had to be controlled by numerous levies. For example, on one 20-acre piece of this land there were approximately 20 levies, now there are only two. It would take a team of three workers approximately a full day to manage the levies on one of the 450-acre parcels of fields. Now it takes one worker about half a day to accomplish the same task.

Another example of Garrett Farms’ commitment to water conservation is their plan to construct a water storage reservoir on one of the lower areas of the farm that is intended to capture the drainage water from the fields and additional runoff from rains. The fields must be drained about two weeks prior to harvesting the rice crop. Currently, the fields are drained and the water returns to the nearby river. Jacko would like to capture this drainage water in the reservoir and recycle it back to the fields with a series of pipes and pumps. After the first cut of rice, the fields can be re-flooded and the second crop will be ready for harvest in approximately another 75 days. Since water prices from the local water authority have more than doubled in the past year, the recycling of this water will be another improvement to reduce his water use and costs.

Although this was not an inexpensive undertaking, these efforts have paid off and according to the IRS, if you are in the business of farming, you can choose to currently deduct your expenses for soil or water conservation or for the prevention of erosion of land used in farming.

Jacko Garrett leads by example with a strong commitment to water conservation and land stewardship on this beautiful land that has been in his family since 1936. This is a wonderful example of how even a farmer/rancher from an older generation is taking on the responsibility to understand this new generation’s water issues and has invested in the technology to conserve water while still operating a successful farm and ranch business.

Jacko also said that one of the added benefits to this type of land and water use is that when the fields are flooded there are more teal and other ducks than you could possibly imagine. Certainly a sight worth seeing.

Garrett Farms has been put on the market and additional information regarding the land and operations can be obtained from agent Minor Taylor with Property Connections in Bay City, TX. Phone 979-245-6055. This farm is offered for $7,966,374.

Tom Roberts is the author and will be working on the second and third articles in the Water and the American Land Owner series for Open Fences Magazine. He is the president of Western Lands – Ranch Restoration Services located in Parker, Colorado. His company designs, develops, and manages land enhancement programs for legacy and investment grade ranch projects throughout the United States. www.western-lands.com. Please contact him at tom@western-lands.com with any questions, comments, or ideas.

Search Ranches for sale to find that perfect ranch for water preservation and habitat improvement.

Fay Ranches Client Acquires Three Sites on Historic Jackson Hole Property

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Jackson Hole, WY, July 12, 2012 – Ranch Estate sites 11, 13 &14 at the
Bar BC Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming have been acquired by a
client of Fay Ranches. Brokers Chuck Davison and Mike Jorgenson
represented the buyer—a longtime Fay Ranches client—in these
transactions. The combined asking price for the three ranches was
$23.5 million. With 53 acres, Site 14 is the largest among the
designated parcels that were drawn for solitude, vistas, and minimal
impact on wildlife habitat.

The Bar BC Ranch is a historic 1400-acre property with 17 ranch sites
located near Jackson Hole at the confluence of the Snake and Gros
Ventre Rivers. The original owners created the first guest dude ranch
in 1912 and also became conservation advocates for the Grand
Teton and Yellowstone areas.

“This is among the highest per acre real estate in the West,” observes
Jorgenson, based full time at the Fay Ranches office in Jackson Hole.
(more)“Bar BC is the most dramatic and unique property in the West,” Davison
emphasizes.

Only three ranch parcels remain for sale. Bar BC Ranch is a Hillwood
Communities development owned by Ross Perot, Jr.

Contact:
Juli Miller
208-788-4177 office
916-717-4118 mobile
jmiller@fayranches.com
www.fayranches.com

What Is A Conservation Easement?

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

What Is A Conservation Easement?

Conservation easements convey a lawful interest in land where the landowner gifts or sells rights to a qualified entity like a land trust. The landowner retains full ownership with restrictions on activities they can do on the property. The landowner as well as land trust negotiate the restrictions and constraints that will be placed on the property. Conversation easements are voluntary negative easements, legally binding constraints on the usage of land for conservation, environmental, or historic purposes. They are granted in perpetuity and pertain to the land no matter who may own it in the future.

Landowners can sell or bequeath property that is covered with a conservation easement. Conservation easements can assist landowners in conserving their land, wildlife habitat, scenic areas or historic buildings. They are designed to satisfy the site-specific needs of the individual landowner and land trust. Conservation easements may also provide landowners with gift and property tax benefits.

Conservation easements might involve expenses for items including legal fees, survey and appraisal costs as well as other professional services. They are generally not a one-size-fits-all proposition. Landowners will have to completely understand the conservation easement and the benefits and limitations before signing. Numerous landowners didn’t have a full comprehension of what they were undertaking and therefore are now remorseful of having placed a conservation easement on their property.

Conservation easements are hard to draft and are costly to monitor and enforce over time. The land trust also must continue to keep track of the property to ensure that the landowner is not violating its terms. Landowners are notified when the land trust will be inspecting the property and the land trust has a legal right to enter the property. The land trust must also defend the conservation easement if legal action needs to be taken.

Conservation easements will become a more and more important conservation tool in the 21st century which will have significant benefits including better water and air quality as well preservation of natural resources. Landowners will hopefully educate themselves concerning the advantages and limitations of conservation easements to help make informed decisions. It is critical that landowners possess a full comprehension of what a conservation easement does and does not allowed them to do. Otherwise it is a recipe for conflict concerning the landowner and the land trust. If you’re searching for land for sale and locate a property that you might want that has a conservation easement, be sure to seek a professional who has an understanding of conservation easements so that you have a full comprehension of it before buying the property.

Learn more about Conservation Easements. Stop by Open Fences’ site where you can find out all about land for sale and the best property for you you.

Open Fences Launches FaceBook pages service.

Friday, February 17th, 2012

Open Fences now offers FaceBook Page construction and updates for your Fan Pages. Open Fences not only can set up new tabs for your Fan Page to show case Videos, Farms and Ranches for sale, Blog posts, or any other content that you would like to showcase but Open Fences can also showcase the Farm, Ranch, and Land content on Open Fences’ FaceBook page.

With FaceBook becoming a huge marketing platform, let us show you how we can create dynamic and attractive Fan Page tabs for your Fan Page that will provide Fans information, capture contact information, and further engage your fans. This is a great way to show case Farms and Ranches for sale.

The possibilities are endless with FaceBook Fan Page tabs.

American AgCredit Merges with Colorado‐based Ag Lender Farm Credit Services of the Mountain Plains

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

January 2012 (Santa Rosa, CA) ‐‐ American AgCredit has announced the merger with Farm Credit Services of the Mountain Plains, based in Greeley, CO, effective January 1, 2012. The merger will make the joint Association the 6
the largest Farm Credit cooperative in the U.S., totaling $5.58 billion in assets, and creating a combined customer base of 6,907 members.

The boards of directors of both organizations released the following statement supporting the merger.

“The combined organization will create efficiency benefitting stockholders, and will strengthen the Association through more diversity and better capitalization. Through this, and through the extension of our national presence, American AgCredit is poised to lead agriculture lending into the next generation.”
This is the fifth merger since 2000 for the multi‐state lender, which has continued to grow its capital and loan portfolio despite the financial challenges in the lending marketplace.  
“It is our fundamental goal to ensure that agricultural financing remains available to agricultural producers who need financing in these challenging times. In order to do this, the Association must remain a safe, well‐diversified organization that can meet the needs of a constantly changing marketplace,” said American AgCredit CEO Ron Carli. “This merger with Mountain Plains strengthens our core structure, and allows us to respond to market demands more efficiently and effectively.”

Merger Benefits
In disclosure documents released to the shareholders of both Associations, the lenders identified the key benefits of the merger for both Associations’ stockholders.
These include:
 A larger capital base, which allows increased equity funding to sustain future loan growth and offer a stronger foundation to weather future economic and credit downturns.American AgCredit and Farm Credit Services of the Mountain Plains Merge
 Improved risk management from increased commodity and borrower diversification.
 Improved business processes through economies of scale – such as increased purchasing power,
reduction in per capital operating costs, and the elimination of redundant professional services.
American AgCredit’s Board Chairman David Santos re‐affirmed the importance of the merger for both Associations and for agricultural lending. “We have a fiduciary obligation to stockholders to ensure that the merger with Mountain Plains
constitutes a benefit for each Association’s customers,” Santos said. “With a strong, diversified portfolio and improved capital reserves, we can now better serve our existing customers, as well as young, beginning, and small farmers who are the future of our industry.”

About American AgCredit  
Founded in 1916, the cooperative nationwide Farm Credit System provides lending and other financial services to farmers, ranchers, agribusinesses and rural homeowners. With this merger, American AgCredit is now the 6th
largest Farm Credit cooperative in the nation. The organization specializes in providing financial services to agricultural and rural customers throughout California, north central
and western Colorado, northwestern New Mexico, Nevada, central Kansas and northern Oklahoma as well as to capital markets customers in 30 states across the nation.
Financial services include production and mortgage financing, equipment and vehicle leasing, lines of credit, crop insurance, and the Young, Beginning and Small farmer program. In addition, the Association provides interest‐free loans for qualifying 4‐H and FFA AgYouth programs, as well as
college scholarships to young people interested in agriculture.  

For more information about American AgCredit’s financial services, call 800‐800‐4865 or visit the website at www.agloan.com for a listing of offices by region.  
  

Summary Fact Sheet
Key advantages of the merger between American AgCredit and Farm Credit Services of the Mountain Plains

Diversification
The merger will provide greater geographic, commodity and borrower diversification. Mountain Plains’ loan portfolio is
heavily concentrated in small grain and field crops (22.2%) and beef and other livestock (22.5%), with a large percentage
(37.4%) comprised of a variety of small market commodities. American AgCredit’s portfolio is spread across a number of
industries, commodities and specialty crops that Mountain Plains does not finance, such as wine grapes, vegetables, tree
fruit and nuts, timber and dairy. The merger will reduce Mountain Plains’ two highest commodity concentrations by more than 50% and 33%, respectively Following the merger, the largest industry/commodity concentration will be in a spectrum of small market miscellaneous commodities (21%), followed by wine grapes and wine at 16%. The significant concentrations in the vineyard/winery and dairy industries will be diluted, thereby mitigating risk exposure in these specific commodities.

The key benefit of broader diversification is that it better positions the organization to withstand credit adversity.
Specifically, by bringing together two portfolios with little overlapping commodity exposures, a downturn in the credit
quality of one area or commodity, whether caused by adverse weather patterns or market conditions, is less likely to
place significant financial distress on the merged association.
Approximately 70% of Mountain Plains’ individual loan balances are less than $250,000. The addition of these loans to American AgCredit’s portfolio will reduce the overall average loan size and help to minimize a material adverse
impact to the Association from any one individual borrower or group of borrowers.

Cost and Overhead Reduction
The merger will provide both Associations with a larger asset base over which fixed costs and overhead can be spread.
Due to its larger size, American AgCredit can spread costs over a larger asset base and thus operate more efficiently.
Following the merger, cost reductions in the range of $1.7 to 2.0 million annually are expected. Farm Credit System costs and CoBank District allocations (such as regulatory charges and insurance premiums) have large fixed cost components that will be spread over a greater volume of assets. In the area of technology, a savings of approximately $1 million per year will be achieved by converting Mountain Plains to American AgCredit’s technology platform. Another cost savings opportunity is in the area of professional services. By being able to access American AgCredit’s in-house legal, marketing and accounting staffs, Mountain Plains will save the fees paid to external providers of these professional services. Salaries and employee benefits are expected to decrease by approximately $1 million annually from the premerger state as redundant positions are consolidated over a period of two to three years.

In addition, increased purchasing power should result in savings in areas such as information technology, telephone systems, fleet vehicles and advertising as volume discounts are applied on a larger scale. The merger should not substantially increase any category of annual operating expenses, apart from a modest increase in certain expenses
caused by the expansion in territory (such as travel expenses).

Management Succession
The merger will create a larger organization which will enhance opportunities to retain and attract talented employees.
Further, it will provide additional staff depth and create more opportunities to build succession at all organizational
levels. The benefits of combining the human capital pool run in both directions. Mountain Plains’ employees will have
opportunities to succeed to open positions within the combined organization. Also, American AgCredit employees will
fill areas where Mountain Plains lack particular expertise, depth or skill sets or are at risk of losing experienced personnel.

Improved Capital Position
The merger will improve capital position and regulatory capital ratios. This larger capital level will increase lending limits
which will better serve the larger loan customers by taking bigger positions in loans consistent with prudent
underwriting standards. Increased equity funding will also sustain loan growth into the future, as the larger absolute
capital level will increase lending limits, enabling the joint Association to take bigger positions in loans consistent with
prudent underwriting standards.

Master Saddler – RICHARD CASTELOW

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

Richard Castelow’s road to becoming a Master Saddler could easily be chronicled on the silver screen. He joined the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment at age fifteen and by the age of twenty, was selected to join the Household Cavalry Saddle shop in Knightsbridge, London.

After rigorous teaching and training under four different master saddlers, undergoing a sum total process similar in scope to gaining a PhD, Castelow was certified a Master Saddler in 1988. Quickly gaining an outstanding reputation, he was appointed as the first ever Master Saddler to Queen Elizabeth II, based at the Royal Mews, Buckingham Palace.

After four years with the Royal Household, Castelow moved to the
United States to use his knowledge and expertise for the benefit of American riders: “What I’ve done is I’ve taken the unique parts of French and German saddles to create an American saddle that is unique to the American market,” comments Castelow. (http://www.chronofhorse.com/article/richard-castelow-creates-saddles-fit-queen).

Where many saddle trees are made of plastic, a material that has very little flexibility, Castelow’s saddles contain five layers of laminated Beachwood to absorb movement. “When I design my saddles, I keep in mind that there are three moving objects, and my job is to eliminate as much movement as I can with the saddle to make the horse, rider and saddle move in harmony,” states Castelow. His dedication to mastering his craft helped him turn a natural talent into a phenomenon and those who ride a Castelow saddle never go back.

www.richardcastelow.com

To find ranches for sale where you can ride and try out a new Castelow saddle visit www.landbrokermls.com

Pristine and Historic Idaho’s Gold Fork River Ranch Sells

Monday, November 14th, 2011

The Gold Fork River, near McCall, Idaho, is one of Idaho’s most scenic rivers.  The river flows through beautiful timbered mountains and forests until reaching Lake Cascade, south of McCall, Idaho.  This river is one of Idaho’s hidden gems, offering fishing for trout and land locked Salmon.  Elk, deer, cougar, bear and other wild game call the areas along the river home.  People living and visiting the area can camp. hike, fish, hunt, ski, snowmobile, ride horses and recreate.  The area is off the beaten path and a great place to enjoy the pristine nature Central Idaho has to offer.  The ranch is situated in Valley County. This is a land where the timber, rocks and mountains, and clean mountain streams meet the sky,” John Knipe said. Fur trappers were the first white men in the area but permanent settlement did not take place until the 1880’s when livestock ranchers moved into the Long Valley in Valley County, Idaho.In addition to fishing and wild game, the area consist of large amount of natural resources.  On of which is Gold.  Gold mined prior to 1958 in this county was mostly found and mined in lode deposits of antimony gold ore and reported to be about 324,000 ounces that was mined in these early years.

Knipe Land Company is proud to announce that they have just sold the Gold Fork River Ranch.  The ranch offers more than four miles of this pristine, alpine river flowing through the center of the ranch.  Topography on the ranch varies from timbered mountains, mountain meadows, to rugged rock canyons, dramatic rushing rapids on the river to slow flowing, ever continuous bending and winding river and waterways.  The ranch provides critical habitat and refuge for Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout, Brook Trout, Columbia Basin Red-banned Trout, Yellow Perch, and land-locked Chinook Salmon, which are more precisely called Kokanee Salmon. The ranch also provides pristine, natural habitat, not only for livestock, but also herds of elk, deer, and wild big game, like the cougar, bear, moose and other nature and wildlife.  The ranch consists of over 1,200 deeded acres of land and offers the owner over 8 miles or riverfront – counting both sides of the river.

Close to the ranch is a wonderful area attraction – the famous Gold Fork Hot Springs.  This is a mineral rich hot springs that is open year round.  The hot springs is open to the public, offering a spectacular setting and six different pools.  The area is renowned for mountain biking, hiking fishing, skiing and other year round recreation activities.  John Knipe, Broker for Knipe Land Company said “When it comes to recreating in this area, you are only limited by your imagination and your check book.” Area attractions include three ski hills, golf coureses, lakes for boating and sailing and fishing, ghost towns, national forest, numerous rivers and streams, alpine lakes to hike to and enjoy, and other natural resources found in a forested setting.

Knipe Land Company is one if Idaho’s oldest real estate companies, tracing its roots back nearly 70 years to 1944 when it first opened its doors.  The real company specializes in marketing and selling commercial farms. ranches for cattle recreation, family retreats and legacy ranches – ranches purchased by today’s generation and held by the family owners for future generations; as well as timberland, and recreation based real estate.  Professional natural resource management is also available including, farm management, ranch management and timber management and conservation.  If you are buying or selling or looking for land management – look no further than one of Idaho’s oldest and most trusted firms, Knipe Land Company.  Knipe Land Company and Knipe Land North, LLC, are licensed in Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, and Washington State.  Because Knipe Land can trace its roots back nearly 70 years, they bring a long list of satisfied customers ranging from farmers, ranchers, land owners, buyers, sellers, and ranging in size from Fortune 500 companies to individual owners.

John Knipe serves as President of Knipe Land Company.  He holds office as Past Regional Vice President of the National Association of Realtors – Realtors Land Institute.  Knipe is also Past President of the Idaho Realtors Land Institute.  Knipe is co-founder and President of the World Organization Land Federation.  He is a seasoned farm, ranch and land broker with agents and offices across Idaho.  Knipe is an Idaho native and he was responsible for successfully marketing the Gold Fork River Ranch. “Idaho offers over 80 mountain ranges including the Rocky Mountains, 26,000 miles of fishable rivers and streams and over 2,000 mountain lakes”, Knipe said. For more information on Knipe, the Gold Fork River Ranch or other ranches being marketed, readers are encouraged to go to:  www.knipeland.com.  Knipe also publishes The Range Writer Natural Resources Magazine.  Readership last issue was over 380,000 readers.  To request a free copy of this farm and ranch real estate magazine, call (208) 345-3163 or email the editor at john@knipeland.com.

To search for more Idaho Ranches for Sale visit Land Broker MLS

Why you Should Exchange Under IRC 1031

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

There are several reasons that you as a property owner should participate in a 1031 exchange. For those of you who are not familiar with 1031 exchanges, 1031s are a way to defer taxes on the capital gains from a sale of investment property.  1031s can be very complicated and you will also need the help of a 1031 qualified intermediary. There are 5 main advantages to exchanging property.

  1. Preservation of Equity – 1031 exchanges allow owners to defer taxes on the capital gains from a sale indefinitely. This allows the owner to roll the gains into a new property over and over rather than pay the taxes. Keep in mind that if you do 1031 exchanges and then at some time in the future decide not to exchange you will owe taxes going all the way back to your original basis.
  2. Leverage – You can exchange from a property that you have a high amount of equity or one that you own “free and clear”  into a property of much more value and has a higher cash flow.
  3. Diversification – Exchangers can diversify by exchanging out of one property into two or more properties. There are time considerations that must be taken into account. Consult with an attorney prior to engaging in an exchange involving multiple properties.
  4. Management Relief – If you as an owner have accumulated several single family rentals that require intensive management you can exchange them for one single investment property that requires substantially less management.
  5. Estate Planning – In many cases, several members of a family inherent a single property jointly and cannot agree on what they want to do with it. The family members can exchange the property for several different properties that suit the needs of all family members.

Always consult with an attorney who is familiar with 1031 exchanges.

To find your replacement 1031 ranch for sale, farm for sale, mountain land for sale, equestrian property for sale, or land for sale visit www.landbrokermls.com.