Wayne County Farm

One of the farms we looked to buy was a 80 acre farm in Wayne County Iowa. Wayne County is the next county south of our current farm down by the Missouri border. On paper this farm had everything we were looking for. House, Barn, pond, timber and lots of pasture ground, it was a good small cattle operation. The farms all around this farm were very nice and well taken care of and you could tell the people who owned them had some money. The pastures had spring fed pond, and another pond for the back 40 acres so water for the cattle was there.

Great looking pasture on this farm.

The land was exactly what we were looking for with pasture, and possible hay ground, with a water sources for the cattle and hunting on the land.

The spring fed pond

What we didn’t like about this farm was its location. The nearest town with a grocery store was about 30 miles away. This farm was truly out in the middle of nowhere, it felt to isolated. We would like some place that is with in an hour of a fairly large city.My wife didn’t like the house, it needed a ton of work, so for her that was the deal breaker. This whole farm had seen better days, the really big tun off for us was all the junk lying around. The barnyard had tons of junk like old motors, tire, metal tanks. It would take days to clear out all the stuff from the place. Even the barns were full of junk that we would have to remove from the property.

Some of the junk of this farm

Nothing turns us off more than seeing junk lying around, sadly this was the second farm we had seen that had lots of junk. Price tag for this farm was 280,000.00, this one was not for us.  Stay tuned for our next post, the farm we look at next, we really like and am now trying to work out a deal.

More pictures below of this farm.

Second pond on the back forty.

About Gordon Milligan

I am a retired conductor for a commuter railroad in Chicago IL, I now live in and have bought a 40 acre farm in South Central Iowa that I have built from the ground up. My wife and I are trying to raise and grow most of my own food using sustainible and organic methods. I have a blog that journals my journey to becoming a farmer.
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13 Responses to Wayne County Farm

  1. Langela says:

    You had to be down by us. We are just south of Seymour, about 3 miles from the MO border. You are in one of the poorest counties in Iowa, so remember that when you are looking at places. Without seeing the house more, I’d still say it looked overpriced. Around here, the farmland is going for about $4000-5000 and acre with pastureland going for about half that. Also, unless you are big shoppers, Centerville is close enough to get to a super walmart. With Des Moines only being about 2 hours and that time doesn’t feel like much a couple of times a year. It is worth it to be out here away from traffic and people. I guess it depends on what kind of people you are. Being from a big city, you may find you need to be near more people and traffic and stores.

    • We really liked Wayne county, the land and the low taxes, but felt it was to far from Des Moines where my daughter lives and too farm from the Amtrak station at Oceola Iowa so Niki can jump on a train there to go back to Chicago to see her family and her family can do the same to see us. We also need a hospitol not too far away in case a medical emergency comes up, like me getting gored by one of my Highland cattle. This is why we felt the Wayne county farm was too farm from those things..

      • Langela says:

        Being close to the train station is a good idea. So is being close to your daughter. We do, however, have a wonderful hospital in Corydon, a decent one in Centerville, and one in almost every town of equal size to Chariton. I can’t wait to see the farm you are looking seriously at, though. I love looking at farms. And since I am blessed to have the perfect place here with no need to look for myself, I will live vicariously through your adventures.

  2. Karen says:

    Looks like asbestos (sp) siding which can be very epensive should you need to remove it.

  3. Aunt Mary says:

    Lifeflight goes to and from Centerville pretty often. We camp at Island View and go to Centerville almost every day so we know it pretty well. They have a good place to eat too, The Manhattan, south on highway 5. LOL Good luck with this venture. I know you two are thinking this through.

  4. This farm seems right up my alley, but then again I’m not about to retire. I suppose if I weren’t 30 I might feel quite a bit different about having such a fixer-upper.

    • Hi Andrew, we are not put off by doing rehab work on the house or farm, I have rehabed 5 homes in my life time, and come from a family of carpenters and I am sure with our budget we will have to get a house that needs at least some kind of work if not a gut rehab. Its just if the wife don’t like the house that is the deal breaker If moma isn’t happy no one is. We liked the farm too, the land and the barns are just what we are looking for. The location was also not right for us, I am sure you can relate. You feel it is going to be a little bit of getting used to living on your new farm because you can see the town off into the distance and you are not used to living this close to a town. We are coming from a metropolitan area that has over 8 million people and we would still like to be fairly close to a big town when we move to the country.Where there are no towns with grocery stores or gas satations for miles, with the price of gasoline as high as it is, we wouldn’t feel comfortible living there.

  5. I totally get you about the junk being discouraging, and I understand about it being too far. But since you are finding places that have lots of junk around, let me just share my perspective on that. Back in 2008 we bought an old run-down farm to convert it into a guest house. There had been no garbage pick-up for over 50 years, so we literally had 50 years’ worth of accumulated garbage and hoarding to remove. We rented a Bobcat and got it all done in three weekends–and actually had fun! The house was horrible, and that we didn’t do ourselves. I won’t tell you what we spent, but it wasn’t cheap getting that livable. Here’s a link to some photos of what we did: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lg7yX5Ap9yg&feature=email What I’m trying to say is, junk can be cleaned up and metal sold for scrap–if that is all that’s coming between you and your dream farm. With your experience rehabbing homes, you could redo a house for a fraction of what we had to pay someone to do.

    And hey, I get you with wanting a hospital close. We had always intended to retire out in West Texas where my husband’s family are ranchers, but after I got pneumonia and couldn’t get decent care in the hospital there (not to mention it was an hour’s drive away!), we realized that wouldn’t work as we got older. And that’s why we’re farming in Northwest Georgia, about half an hour from Chattanooga, TN.

    • Thanks for the link to your video to fixing up the old farm you bought. Everybody should check this out it is a great video showing how they restored the old farm. I wish I could find a place like that, that place seemed perfict for us. Good Job and don’t worry, I won’t let junk on a place stop us if we find the right place. Thanks for sharing this.

      • Zephyr Hill says:

        Hey, Gordon, (I’m signing in with my other blog just to confuse the issue–not really, I just thought you might not connect Zephyr Hill and mimiswardrobe). Glad you liked the video and that it encouraged you to feel you could do the same. Feel free to share it! I’m rooting for you guys to find the PERFECT place!

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