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Old 06-16-2009, 01:47 PM
 
60 posts, read 119,732 times
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My husband and I are now considering buying/building a farm in the Ada/Cascade area. We want at least 20 acres: enough for horses, small orchards, fields, swimming pool, etc. and need a large house for our very large family. How much would this cost? (Is it even worth it?) Is Ada very expensive? Are there better towns to look at? We don't want to be more than twenty minutes from downtown Grand Rapids. Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2009, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
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I don't think raw undeveloped land is going to be that much more expensive in Ada than anywhere else in the GR area. Not now with very few, if any, new housing developments going in. Construction costs are the same everywhere around here. And taxes in Ada are cheap. It might be hard finding land for sale though.

Here's a house listing with 11 acres, pool and a horse barn, but I'm guessing you'd have to add onto the house, since you mentioned "large family":

http://public.grar.com/public/ePubRe...art?MLS=755857

That area near 2 Mile and Cramton is spectacular (large rolling hills and a lot of horse country).

Here's the house from the air:

http://www.bing.com/maps/default.asp...20mi&encType=1

Last edited by magellan; 06-16-2009 at 02:56 PM..
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Old 06-17-2009, 05:08 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
3,095 posts, read 5,629,849 times
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Quote:
And taxes in Ada are cheap.
This made me laugh... I'm sure it's probably true, relatively speaking.

But I still vividly remember in 3rd grade, when my parents told me that we were moving from Ada to Clarksville because "the taxes in Ada are too high." LOL. There were other reasons too, but that's the big one that my 3rd-rade mind retained. I guess it's all relative...
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Old 06-17-2009, 06:24 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,756,057 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michigan83 View Post
This made me laugh... I'm sure it's probably true, relatively speaking.

But I still vividly remember in 3rd grade, when my parents told me that we were moving from Ada to Clarksville because "the taxes in Ada are too high." LOL. There were other reasons too, but that's the big one that my 3rd-rade mind retained. I guess it's all relative...
Maybe "cheap" is the wrong word. I think the millage for Ada Township is 29 (1.5% of market value), which to me isn't bad. There are a lot more expensive areas in Grand Rapids.
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Old 06-17-2009, 07:37 AM
 
Location: East Grand Rapids, MI
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Quote:
Originally Posted by magellan View Post
Maybe "cheap" is the wrong word. I think the millage for Ada Township is 29 (1.5% of market value), which to me isn't bad. There are a lot more expensive areas in Grand Rapids.
It's possible the move was more driven by property values.

1.5% of market value in Ada is worse than 1.5% of property value in Clarksville almost certainly.

That means your taxes on a 2,000 sq. ft. house in Ada are much higher than the same sized house in another town.

If you care more about the taxes you pay than the location of your home, this might be a major factor.
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:32 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
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Quote:
It's possible the move was more driven by property values.

1.5% of market value in Ada is worse than 1.5% of property value in Clarksville almost certainly.

That means your taxes on a 2,000 sq. ft. house in Ada are much higher than the same sized house in another town.

If you care more about the taxes you pay than the location of your home, this might be a major factor.
Yeah, that might be pretty accurate. I think we went from a 3-4 acre lot that was worth $200,000 to a 15-acre farm that we bought for about $95,000, or something like that. That was in the mid 90's. So I guess we got more for less, and lower taxes too. If you don't mind that the neighbors have broken down cars in the front yard (which isn't mowed).

But, anyway, I was young and I've never really asked them to completely explain the move, so who knows.
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Old 06-17-2009, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Niceville, FL
8,252 posts, read 16,852,288 times
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If Ada prices don't work for you, I'd look into Walker/Comstock Park/Alpine township. The commute to downtown from the Walker Ave. or Fruit Ridge exits of I-96 is not bad, and the area north of 4 mile is still largely apple country. You might even get lucky and buy land with established trees It's also never been trendy like the Forest Hills area, so land costs are probably going to be lower.
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Old 06-17-2009, 09:35 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,756,057 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suydam View Post
It's possible the move was more driven by property values.

1.5% of market value in Ada is worse than 1.5% of property value in Clarksville almost certainly.

That means your taxes on a 2,000 sq. ft. house in Ada are much higher than the same sized house in another town.

If you care more about the taxes you pay than the location of your home, this might be a major factor.
Yeah, but going back to the OP's question, Ada is not really that much more expensive than other suburban areas of the metro. Just because there are a lot of expensive homes doesn't mean it's more expensive to build there. Land that has potential for development is going to sell for $25,000 - $50,000 an acre, same as Byron Center, Rockford, or Hudsonville. Rural land (basically undevelopable) is going to go for a lot less than that. However, if you want to buy a lot in a developed subdivision in Ada, yes you will pay more for that lot ($100,000+ for 1/2 acre) than in other areas. But that's not what the OP is looking for.

Hope that makes sense.
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Old 06-17-2009, 06:56 PM
 
60 posts, read 119,732 times
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Would it be do-able, in Ada, to get say, 20 acres on one of the rivers? Is that possible anymore? If so, does anyone have any idea of the prices riverfront? Is the river rec-friendly? My husband and I chose Western Michigan for the low price of real estate and the family atmosphere, so any advice is helpful. What kind of house/property can you get for a couple million? Is East Grand Rapids a better market for that? We wants lots of things to do with our kids, whether that means a farm with horses and other animals, or walkability to museums and shops, but definitely outdoor activities! Thanks.
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Old 06-17-2009, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,756,057 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pooches9 View Post
Would it be do-able, in Ada, to get say, 20 acres on one of the rivers? Is that possible anymore? If so, does anyone have any idea of the prices riverfront? Is the river rec-friendly? My husband and I chose Western Michigan for the low price of real estate and the family atmosphere, so any advice is helpful. What kind of house/property can you get for a couple million? Is East Grand Rapids a better market for that? We wants lots of things to do with our kids, whether that means a farm with horses and other animals, or walkability to museums and shops, but definitely outdoor activities! Thanks.
In that price range, if you don't mind working with a realtor, contact Ken Grashuis:

http://public.grar.com/public/member...LSTID=GRAS3216

He's THE best realtor in higher end properties on the East side of Grand Rapids. I don't get anything for referring you to him (I wish), but I know a lot of people who have worked with him.

The Thornapple River in Cascade is definitely rec friendly. Here's a listing right on the Thornapple:

http://public.grar.com/public/ePubRe...art?MLS=750385
Photos

The Grand River is OK, but the land around it floods constantly in the Spring, making it difficult to own land near it.
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