Buying hunting property

PSell

Spike
Starting to look at purchasing a piece of property to work on my game management skills, and enjoy a secluded hunting property.

What are your ideas on minimum size, pretty much just me and a couple friends, so not much pressure?
How much per acre would be a good deal?
Any precautions or insights would be appreciated.
 

Southern

Eight Pointer
Big topic with alot of angles and amswers that are very subjective. What region are you looking it to start? In the mountains it is not unusal to huntnon five acres. Down east that is 500 so alot depends on budget and preferred area.
 

PSell

Spike
Big topic with alot of angles and amswers that are very subjective. What region are you looking it to start? In the mountains it is not unusal to huntnon five acres. Down east that is 500 so alot depends on budget and preferred area.
Looking for the Piedmont area
 

Greg

Old Mossy Horns
Just remember this. Look at the property around you as much as what you buy.

You will not be able to do anything with yours if you have dogs running it or people that ride horses and ATV every time you are not there.
This ^ … or people that clean out the population year in and year out.

I've come to the conclusion that if I just want to 'be out there and hunt' … most places will do. But if I want to try to kill something decent let alone a trophy, I'm much better off going to a "big buck" state to hunt.
 

nhn2a

Six Pointer
I bought 30 acres several years back here in the Piedmont. I have tons of wildlife and kill about 5 deer a year off of it. I see easily 20-30 deer routinely. As others have said, I think what the surrounding area looks like plays a big role. I have hundreds of acres of agriculture fields on one side and hundreds of acres of woods on the other 3 sides.

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
 

Weekender

Twelve Pointer
I echo Mr. Gadget's post. Use a county's GIS map to get names of owner's and do google searches.

Keep in mind how close any property is to houses. Even if you're only bow hunting, always consider where a wounded deer might run to. I personally wouldn't want a property to have it's honey hole on or too near the property line.

The wrong neighbors who live on their premises could be a real problem for a landowner who is too far away to get there in 20 minutes. I know a guy who had a honeyhole 30 acre tract down in SC who wound up having to sell for all the trespassing and vandalism. They stole one of his lock-ons by sawing the entire tree down, for example.

Also, for me, I would want any road front side the public sees to be an absolute snarl regrowing cutover or young pines. Reduces access and what the public can see and poach road side.

A friend of mine in the outfitting business said anything under 30 acres will be far more easily pressured by neighboring dogs, etc.
 

nchawkeye

Old Mossy Horns
To give you an example, I have 72 acres listed on Burney Road here in Randolph County for $201,600 which is $2,800/acre...
 

Gilly

Ten Pointer
A neighbor next door to my hunting property is trying to sell his 200+ acres for $1.5 mil which is around $6,000/acre.
 

nhn2a

Six Pointer
Regarding neighbors and trespassers, unless the person you are buying from has been good at watching the property I would expect to have several run ins in the first couple years you own a property. Everyone that I know who has bought property has had at least a few problems in the beginning. When I first bought my land, a lot of kids from a nearby neighborhood would come over to hang-out. I had to put up no trespassing signs and confront a couple of them before they finally stopped. I even had one couple that cut a trail with their riding lawn mower straight through my property so they could walk down to the river which is my boundary. I followed the trail back to their house only to find out it was a husband and wife in their 70s that just liked to go sit on the river and feed the ducks. I gave them permission to keep doing it if they would help keep an eye on the property for me since I live about 40 minutes away.

I even had one trail camera stolen the 2nd year I owned the property and called the sheriff. While I was talking to the deputy and showing him where it was, a couple of kids came walking down the trail (on my property). The deputy quickly confronted them and they told us who it was that stole the camera. The deputy was embarrassed as he turned to me and told me that the kid they named was his nephew. He politely asked if I would consider not pressing charges and if so, he would make sure these kids didn't trespass again. Sure enough, he came back about an hour later with my camera and SD card and I havent seen any kids trespassing ever since.
 

timekiller13

Twelve Pointer
Research, research and research, and then do it some more. I have backed out of buying 3 pieces of property over the last 2 years after I have researched the neighbors. You are going to have trespassers, to what extent they trespass and what damage they do is something you are going to have to figure out. If they are just people that like to walk around the land, no big deal. If they are people that think "This land is your land this land is my land" and are going to do whatever they want, you better run away. My buddy owns the farm behind my house. He lives 5 minutes away and I watch it for him. Despite the fact that myself or him are on that property 2-3x week throughout the year, the neighbors still run all over it. They ride 4 wheelers, dump trash, steal cameras and hunt out of his stands. He and I were hunting back there a few years ago and 6 of them came walking down the edge of the field, heading to different spots. We asked them just what in the hell they thought they were doing and they said "Hunting." Like it was no big deal.

It's very hard to fork out your hard earned money for a piece of land, and then find out that others are running all over it for free. Couple in the fact that land prices in prime hunting areas in NC will top $5,000/acre all day long, makes an even tougher pill to swallow. If you can find property that does not have easy access, such as no road frontage, or down a long dirt road, you may be able to curb your problem somewhat. I have a friend who purchased some land in Ashe county a few years ago that is tremendously difficult to access. He has no trespassing issues at all, but he also has a hard time accessing the land if the weather is bad. Give and take, I guess.
 

oldest school

Old Mossy Horns
Starting to look at purchasing a piece of property to work on my game management skills, and enjoy a secluded hunting property.

What are your ideas on minimum size, pretty much just me and a couple friends, so not much pressure?
How much per acre would be a good deal?
Any precautions or insights would be appreciated.
Don't even think about buying a place that isn't convenient for you to be around frequently.
Locals will invariably "help" you with your land and I mean that in a negative way.
Do it solo. friends become less than that when money/land is involved.
That is my advice based on my experience filled with my bias. OMMV.
 

CRC

Old Mossy Horns
For deer hunting the WRC has said you need at least 1000 acres to insulate yourself from what your neighbors do.

That said buying more property allows for better management than buying just a few acres.


Good luck
 

JONOV

Ten Pointer
For deer hunting the WRC has said you need at least 1000 acres to insulate yourself from what your neighbors do.

That said buying more property allows for better management than buying just a few acres.


Good luck
I've heard similarly, that if one wants to "manage game" in a meaningful way, you need 1000 plus acres.

If "managing game" means "letting younger bucks walk and with a reasonable chance you'll see them next year" then I think the number is much lower.
 

KTMan

Twelve Pointer
Prime piece of hunting land can vary in size and location. I got a buddy that owns a little small 10-12 acre track that joins a very well managed 2000 acre tract in VA. He and his son have killed multiple mature monsters on their little piece. All just a benefit of what it joins.

I lease several tracks. My best and one I'd love to own is around a hundred acres. It is by far one of the best pieces of land I have every hunted. But we have a multi farm (neighborly) agreement and we are all on the same management plan. So as others have stated your neighbors decide as much on management as you do.

I just bought a 70 acre tract in VA. If it turns out to be what I think it can be it will be my "Candy Store". It has the potential to be an amazing property that hopefully I can manage like a thousand acre tract due to its surroundings. Only time will tell.

Good luck. Price is based on area. If your patient and do your homework it will all fall in place. I obtained my first farm about 8 years ago. I love it but the hunting has gone south it the last few years. Not that it's over hunting just the numbers both deer and turkey are down for the area. The one I closed on in December has been a five year serious search before all the stars aligned.
 

timekiller13

Twelve Pointer
I would also highly reccommend coming up with some sort of criteria and parameters and sticking to them. Price is a major one of course. But other things to consider are how far are you willing to drive? Do you want year round water sources? Established agriculture? Type of timber? All this is essential. When I first started looking to buy land, my only real criteria was price. But, after I sat down and thought about it, I came up with a list of must haves and a list of deal breakers. Over the last 5 years, I have seriously considered purchasing 5 different pieces of land. 3 of them I backed out after researching neighbors, one I decided not buy because it was too far away and one I just missed the boat, drug my feet on making an offer and someone else got it. Make sure you have all your finances in order and can get cash quickly for a down payment. When you do find that "dream property" you want to be able to move quick.
 

timber

Eight Pointer
I would start with deciding how much you are willing to spend or if you going borrow from bank talk to them on how much you can borrow. Then i would go to some of the sites on internet like land for sale by owner or nc land flip and just see what land is selling for in the area you are looking. Most of the time you can save money if you negotiate the land from owner verses having a real estate agent involved. If you cant get the land at price you think its worth move onto the next one. Lot cheaper to keep looking and makeing offers than buying a over priced piece.
 

Ambush

Twelve Pointer
A 172 acre farm beside of our club in Halifax county was just sold for $3000/acre. Nothing that special about it, besides being next to a highly managed club(ours). If our bucks finish their antler growth, the way they have started, we may have the secret to bigger bucks in the east. That way, you get a lot more land for less dollars. The two buck limit in the east, has changed some attitudes about killing young bucks.
 

DuckyDave

Four Pointer
BIL bought 100 acres, in first few years he was successful getting rid of all hunting trespassers except 1 guy who was a LEO who considered himself above the law. The guy finally quit trespassing after the guy's wife killed herself and the guy lost his desire to hunt. Lesson is you never know in advance who your trespassers are and what it will take to get rid of them.

I know a lady whose family had a bunch of land I am thinking it was Northampton County. Family members all moved to cities for jobs. Somebody stole hundreds of acres of their timber! Lesson learned? I am unsure what they could have done to prevent this other than have family members take turns driving out to look at the property weekly, pay a neighbor to watch property???
 

Southern

Eight Pointer
I think you can buy all the $2000-$3000 per acre good hunting land you want in the piedmont. I would not dream of spending $5000+ per acre. I say this from a recent point of experience. Forget what the realtors are "asking". Look at sold comps.
 

PSell

Spike
I think you can buy all the $2000-$3000 per acre good hunting land you want in the piedmont. I would not dream of spending $5000+ per acre. I say this from a recent point of experience. Forget what the realtors are "asking". Look at sold comps.
I'm trying to walk a couple properties this weekend, just to get my feet wet, so to speak.
I appreciate the advice thus far, and have created a list of features I'm looking for at the outset.
Thankfully, no rush, but if I find what I'm looking for, I'm hoping I'll know it and can take advantage of the opportunity.
 

nhn2a

Six Pointer
One more piece of advice, make sure you research if the property is in a floodplain or considered wetlands. Especially in the summer a lot of those areas dry up and dont look to bad but if they flood routinely that will definitely lower the value of the property.
 

Mr.Gadget

Old Mossy Horns
Unless you are going to live on the acerage or love to piddle, or need to spend cash; your money may be better spent on outfitted hunts.

100 acres x $3000 per = a lot of nice hunts.
Yep for 200k to 400k
You could join a bunch of hunt clubs in several states and hunt for years....

Ifs cool if the land would be a good investment for the family, area the land is in and so on but me, no kids just me and maybe 10 to 15 years more hunting it is not a good investment for me. I can do better in stocks 401 or 457 than the land would do for me.
Could even make money and extra to pay the 800 to 1k a year dues for the club.

Would still need to rent a place to stay when hunting or join a local club to have a clubhouse... most places I would hunt are 1.5 to 2 hrs drive. More than I want to drive for day hunts.
 

JONOV

Ten Pointer
Unless you are going to live on the acerage or love to piddle, or need to spend cash; your money may be better spent on outfitted hunts.

100 acres x $3000 per = a lot of nice hunts.
There's a lot to be said for convenience and accessibility. To me, the point of owning it, or leasing or joining a club for that matter, is that its "mine" when I want it. The nice thing about it being "yours" is that when you find yourself with free time, or the weather and moon are lining up just right, or the party your wife had you scheduled to go to gets cancelled, you can boogie right there. On the same note, I don't understand folks that buy hunting properties that are several hours away or further. Having that much tied up in something that requires 12 hours driving round trip for a day or day and a half of hunting is hard for me to process, personally.

If I want to hunt with an outfitter I have to plan, well in advance. Nothing wrong with that. But the trip gets put on a pedestal, one of a few highlights for a season. But what happens when it turns out to be 90 out or dumps rain on your hunt? You may get a rebook but you still have to pay for everything else involved. And that says nothing if the outfitter turns out to be garbage. That happens a lot too.
 
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