Connie and Scott spent their childhood years on this property, doing all the sorts of things a family does on a parcel of land that has been in the family for generations. Family hikes. Exploring. Camping. Cookouts and bonfires. As they grew up and started families of their own, they stayed connected to the land through visits with their own children. Over time, those children grew up as well, and their time became divided between other important relationships, careers, and families. The surrounding neighborhood changed, and it was time for the family to make a change as well.

Does this situation sound familiar?

Navigating a change like this is tricky. On the one hand, they knew their goals would best be met through selling the land. But on the other hand, their deeply held values as a family caused them to want more than a big pile of cash. Their concern for the community that would be created guided them towards asking very direct questions about the future of this property. Their concern for the potential of this land kept them from being willing to sell it at a wholesale discount. And they just weren’t ready to spend the hundreds of thousands of dollars it would take to develop it themselves.

The family asked Sean, Connie’s son, to be the point person for selling the property at a great price to a competent and trustworthy developer who would honor their wishes. This proved to be a very challenging task.

It was made even more challenging because Sean lives out of town, and he already has a family, a full time job, and is active in his community. This important opportunity could, at times, feel like a heavy burden. Over many years of having the property on the market, Sean continued to say no to developers who would overpromise and underdeliver, even when his time for phone calls and meetings was stretched thin.

Cultivate Development neither overpromised nor underdelivered. Through our initial meetings with Sean, and then the whole family, the Cultivate team was able to discern that we have a shared passion for community, potential, and stewardship. Our creative approach to partnership opened up a way forward where we can work together towards a shared vision for what’s best for this family, this property, and the City of Ferndale.