A cute wood-shingled cabin-style home located in the mountains of Humboldt County was just posted on Zillow for just shy of $1 million. It’s a 1,200 sq ft. one-bedroom, one-bathroom house with big charming windows and arched doorways, serenely located west of the Avenue of the Giants and just south of the Humboldt Redwoods State Park.
$925,000 may seem like a shitload of money for a one-bedroom, one-bathroom house way up in the hills. But prospective home buyers wouldn't only acquire a small house if they purchased the property. The cabin is located on a 40-acre plot of farmland with a 22,500-square-foot legal weed farm on it. Rows of exquisite, unharvested cannabis plants growing from the ground are among the image slides showcasing the property.
“This would be a wonderful place to post up with your family and run a legal farm while enjoying this beautiful property,” the listing says. The cabin is located in an area known as Salmon Creek, a weed town located north of Garberville and south of Eureka. The real estate listing blew up on the Twitter account Zillow Gone Wild.
Everyone knows cannabis is legal in California. The property’s listing representative, Brooklyn Marvin of TOP Properties, told the New York Post there’s been big demand in the wake of the pandemic to operate cannabis farms.
“Everyone’s trying to jump on the opportunity to open up,” said Marvin, who has 18 cannabis listings and also specializes in timber and residential sales. On top of a cabin as the main house and half an acre of cultivation, the property also offers a separate two-story unit for workers or guests, two barn/dry structures, a 4-million-gallon pond, and multiple gardens. “A lot of these guys started in LA and San Francisco … and then they realized that it would be a real benefit for them to be owning their own farm to feed product into these legal channels.”
(Image of property, via Zillow)
Marvin’s commentary is interesting, considering much of California’s cannabis farms are struggling to stay afloat amid the price crash and high taxes. Anyone getting into cannabis cultivation in the California market is destined to have a difficult time right now, even despite Governor Newsom eliminating the cultivation tax (while raising the state’s excise tax).
The current owner of the property is Ryan McDowell. He’s lived on the acreage for 12 years. While he’s loved the wildlife his sprawling property attracts, he’s looking for new people to take over the farm. He and his family have since moved about 90 minutes away. “The farm has been doing really well and it’s hard to leave,” he said, adding that the land also previously had a vegetable garden with sweet corn, tomatoes, and broccoli. “It’s just more of a difficult life choice to move on.”
The cost to maintain the house runs up to $15,000 per year, McDowell said, while the cost to operate the farm can reach up to $100,000 annually. It’s expensive to upkeep a cannabis farm! What’s more, selling this property is not as “simple” as a typical house sale, due to a legal weed farm also being on the property. As opposed to a standard home closing in California, which can take 45 days on average, cannabis sales typically require a 60-day period. Not only is there value associated with the property, but there’s also value tied to the LLCs that own the cannabis licenses and permits, which must also be transferred with the sale.
“It’s more involved,” said Marvin. “We have teams of attorneys and CPAs, and a lot of people are involved in the transfers of the LLCs with the properties.
The listing has remained on the market for almost a year, although Marvin said it’s gotten some interest. One prospective buyer had a deal fall through, she said. We will likely see many more farms go up for sale in California in the near future, due to how many farms in the region can’t stay afloat under the current regulatory framework. Sad times.