The dream becomes reality... - Smallholding NOW RENTED
The dream becomes reality... -















































































































































































If you are visiting from Greenshifters, thank you for your interest.
We first advertised this property in April 2017 and we have had a lot of interest.  After an open day on 26 May and further interest we thought we had found the right people but sadly they did not check out.
PLEASE READ THE INFORMATION CAREFULLY
We are not trying to put you off but we do want you to be sure that the place is the one for you.   
FARM BUSINESS TENANCY

We are offering a Farm Business Tenancy for the balance of five years from 1st October 2016.  As it is a Farm Business Tenancy, if you decide you cannot cope or have to leave then you will be liable to pay for the rest of the duration.  So you have to be sure before you take up the tenancy.

This is not like an Assured Shorthold Tenancy and the Agreement is tailored for the property etc.  The tenant will be responsible for paying for this Agreement.  The cost of this is £900 to cover the solicitors' fees etc.  This is a non refundable deposit.  Once this amount is paid and your contract is signed (by you and sent by post to the solicitors, I will do likewise), the tenancy is yours.  Rent is payable on signing rhe contract.

As has been mentioned elsewhere the duration of the tenancy is five years from 1st October because that is the date on which my ex put the house into my name as part of a divorce settlement.  I have to pay his father back for a gift and that is due five years after the house is in my name.  The ex didn't do that for four years so it has only just been done.  I have made them aware that the place is being rented so there should be no problems, if there is and they choose to take me to court and win, which is unlikely then I will have to give you three months notice.  So we are including a break clause.

It is a full repairing tenancy.  That means that we walk away and you take the place in the condition it is in.  We offer no certificates or guarantees.  We are renting the place out cheaply as we do not have the time or funds to do the place up ourselves.  It is up to you to make the place as comfortable as you would like it to be.  We would like you to buy the place at the end of the term (or before if you are prepared to pay £285,000 for it).  If you do work on the place we would be happy to allow you to present any agreed receipts for materials against the sale price if you buy the property at the end of your tenancy.
ACCESS
We have been clearing the place but we have not completely cleared it yet.  It is likely that you will not have access to the two sheds and the "play tavern" until we have cleared them.  We will clear them as soon as possible and they will be included in the tenancy once this is done.
RENT
The rent is £100 per week.  This is payable two years in advance.   
BUSINESS PLAN
You will need a sound business plan as it is a difficult location.  There is no passing trade and the farmers market is 12miles away and stocked by established farms.
CHECKS
If you are the ones for the place you will have to put the rental monies with our solicitor.  We will also need a £30per person payment to ourselves for the credit and tenancy check.  I this is all ok then the agreement money will be due and on receipt of this we will instruct our solicitors and draw up the contract and notices.  If you do not check out your £5200 will be refunded less any fees for the transfer.
INSURANCE
The building will be insured.  As part of the agreement this will be at your expense.
SIZE AND ANIMALS
The Smallholding (not a Farm) is 4 acres.  This is enough for a reasonable smallholding of a few goats, a few pigs and a vegetable patch.  There are simple rules for stocking and you can find them on many web sites.  These are not cumulative i.e. if you can only have three sheep, that means three sheep and nothing else grazed on the land.  If you overstock you will end up with a huge worm problem and no grass.
There is fencing for pigs and you would be able to keep them immediately on one or two of the fields.  There are three pig arcs at the property.  We will leave them if you are prepared to pay for us to have a new one with a floor and insulated.  If not then we will take them with us.
VEGETABLE PATCH
It has been set up for goats so everything was allowed to run wild to provide them with grazing as they are browsers not grazers.  They broke into the vegetable patch and wrecked it so there will be clearing up to do in there as the cold frames were smashed etc.  The soil is good in there, it was built up with compost over the years.  Many of the areas have been well composted so you will have good soil.  The soil is thin in places and the rock is near the surface.  You may also like to give some attention to drainage as it is a river valley and some of the area can be wet if not drained properly.
COUNCIL TAX
You will be liable for Council Tax which is about £1,200 a year.
BORE HOLE
There is no Water Rate bill as it is on a borehole.  The main pump at the top, 100ft underground was replaced last year.  The pump by the house the year before.  You may want to put a filter on the system.  We never did but it was a little unnerving to have brown water on occasion.
THE HOUSE
The house itself needs work.  It has had various plans that have moved rooms around and things were not finished.  It actually has two kitchens.  We will be taking the brown one and the light blue rayburn with us.  We will leave you the dark blue rayburn (unless you want your kitchen in the middle in which case we'll take the dark blue one).  It is up to you.  You may want to put your own fresh kitchen in.
LOCATION
The place is 12 miles south of Aberystwyth.  That will mean a 24 mile round trip to do the shopping and about 25 minutes minimum if you need an ambulance.  So, don't take up the property if you have a medical condition.
Also, the property is on a hill so all feed etc has to be taken up that hill.  It does get muddy and slippery so don't take on the property if you are unfit.
DOG BREEDING
The dog kennels were built for German Shepherd Dogs, we have taken the dog gates for our own dogs but the main structure and wooden doors remain.  They need to be sealed properly, the builders did a poor job of finishing off.  Similarly with the goat shed, that needs sealing as well and more ventilation as the builders didn't listen to me and didn't put in enough ventilation so you will get condensation.
We have no objection to you using the property for breeding dogs as long as you adhere to the Kennel Club Rules.
Access to anything is a problem due to the remoteness.  That has been a problem with selling dogs and we have ended up selling ours cheaply just to get people to come far enough to buy them.  So if you are planning to breed dogs, please take this into your breeding plan.
SOLAR POWER
There is a 16 panel solar panel system on the roof.  This cost us £6,000 and it is linked to a Feed In Tariff.  We are currently planning to take this with us but if you are interested we could sell it and the tariff to you.  That would save you the installation costs and I'm not sure you can get a FIT now.  If you are interested then please make us an offer. 
POLYTUNNELS
We are happy to leave the polytunnel rings for two polytunnels if you buy us the rings for one larger size one.
EQUIPMENT
Most of the equipment has already gone and we are returning for bits and pieces we haven't been able to take yet.  We may be interested in leaving one or two things if you are prepared to pay for them.  These are the Aviaries, Caravan, Trailer and Horsebox.  If you are interested, please make us an offer.

THE SITUATION

As you will have realised the house and land are being offered at a very low rent to reflect that you will have to do work, both on the house and on the land to improve it and to make it comfortable for yourself and your family.  This is more than just a quick dust through.  It is being offered on a Farm Business Tenancy so you MUST run a smallholding business from it and it is on a Full Repairing basis which means that any improvements or repairs are your responsibility.

The history and situation is that we had to do work on my mother's house after she passed away to improve it to sell.  We have sold it and moved elsewhere.  We do not have the time to improve the house being offered so we are offering you this unique opportunity.  The house was used for storage and the dogs brought in a lot of mud so it does need a good clean.  We also had damp so there is work that is needed and the place needs to be heated and it will be fine. 

If you want to alter the building, you can, with permission.  Any works must be agreed with us prior to you starting them.

This is a place for a keen DIYer and someone who accepts that it is a great opportunity if you want a place that would be really good with a bit of effort.  You must however be prepared to smallhold/farm and that means more than a couple of chickens and some pets. 

We are happy for you to breed dogs as long as you are not puppy farming.  There is a structure for kennels there but you would need to put the front caging and doors on. 

I spent a few years at the place with no heating so there was a lot of historic damp (long story).  Nyth Nest put in a biomass boiler which they didn't install properly so after a year of it not working and having to call them in regularly they have changed the heating to oil.  This works!  The place has dried out but of course with us being away now a lot there is a little damp creeping back.  If you put the heating on, open the windows and give the place a scrub it will be fine.  It needs to be lived in.  We used it for storage and focused on the animals and doing up the other house.  So airflow got a bit limited with all the boxes etc.

These were the estate agent details alongside comments of problems that we have seen with various of the rooms etc.

Beautifully and peacefully situated up a quiet bye road within a mile of Llyn Eiddwen lake.  Approximately 4 miles from the sea at Llanrhystud and 10 miles from Aberystwyth.  It is 7 miles west of Tregaron and 11 miles North of Lampeter and 13 miles south of Aberystwyth.
There is a bus service but that finishes at about 5.30pm.  It is ok if you want to go to work and back but not useful if you want a night out.  There is a small shop in Bronant which is about 3 miles away if you forget anything but the opening times are limited.

The very pretty character rural 3 bedroom stone and slate house (built c1800s) in an elevated position with panoramic views and with approximately 4 acres of land, oil central heating, double/secondary glazing, a barn/stable, goat house, barn, kennel and two wooden sheds.
The house is at 1053ft which means that you will catch the wind from all directions and also the elevated position does mean that you will lose a month at each end of your growing season.  The land was very shallow when we took it on, it has been built up with compost and last year it was grazed by our goats (they got everywhere, wrecked the veg patch and have caused a fair bit of damage to the trees in the sloping field).  But, it is great grazing for goats! 
We deep bedded over the winter for many years.  The last year's compost is waiting to be spread wherever needed.  Last winter's deep bedding is still in the sheds awaiting where you want it to go.  It is happily breaking down, ready and waiting.

There are a number of tyres on site.  These are great for planting potatoes in.  They have had a few years off so they are ok to plant direct or you can put dustbin bags in them with holes if you are worried about any disease.  There are also large tractor tyre planting areas.  They provide a very deep planting medium and very easy to grow in as you can lean on the tyre while working in them.  I was disabled so I worked everything out to help with that.
The main "goat" fencing is still going strong.  The "pig" fencing around the two veg plots needs work.  The rock is very near the surface so we got around that by using bottom planks and putting tyres around the base to stop the pigs pushing out.  The main fields would keep them in with no problem.

Beamed Sitting Room (7.01m (23') x 4.57m (15')
This had a stone open fireplace which never worked very well.  When I moved back to the property it made sense to me to make the middle of the house the "farmhouse kitchen" but my new partner disagreed and moved it back up to the "kitchen diner".  There is a rayburn here now but this will be removed if you wish the kitchen to remain up in the diner. 
This has a slate and ceramic tyled floor, concealed original wooden staircase leading to bedroom 3.

We had various pipes put in to sort out the sink in the kitchen/diner and when the central heating was updated.  The ceiling panels were taken down (they were only some sort of hardboard).  They are in the Utility Room but there was a flood when a gully at the back wasn't cleared so they may not be to a quality you would like if you want to replace them.  We had been thinking of taking them all down for a more cottage like appearance.
We had someone to come and look at the woodworm about 4 years ago and he said there wasn't any current worm.  We are not so sure so it would be up to you if you wanted to spray prior to moving in.

The plaster in the room has been damaged from the damp and the dogs running past it.  This is on the bit by the door and it could do with chipping back and replastering.
The whole room needs a good clean.  The doors need a bit of work as the German Shepherds have scratched the wood a little.  There is also some historic scratching from the Old English Sheepdogs owned by the previous owner.

Kitchen/Dining Room (10.06m (33ft) x 4.27m (14ft)
being a converted barn adjoining, slate floor, rayburn and multifuel stove.  Stable door to garden.
We moved the kitchen into here which may or may not be to your taste.  The original kitchen is in the utility room and you will easily be able to replace this and we can provide you with a photograph as to how it was when we moved in.  We have a second kitchen we put in that we will be taking with us.  There are power points in this room.  They work as far as we know but we cannot give any guarantees for the wiring.

Utility Room
This is a long thin room that took the worst of the flood.  We thought it was the washing machine!  It is dried out now but the corner needs a bit of plastering, it needs a good clean and repainting.  There is a butler sink there and it is plumbed for a washing machine.

Small Study 2.44m (8ft) x 1.52m (5ft)
That was what the estate agent called it.  The roof is low, it has a tiny window and it is best as a pantry or place to give a pet a bedroom.  When we first arrived however one of our friends put a double airbed in there and used it as a bedroom!

The plug for the borehole pump plugs in there.  It would be advised that the plugs are looked at as there has been damp.

Bedroom 1 (annex) 3.73m (12ft 3") x 3.56m (11ft 8")
Downstairs with built in space for wardrobe.  We took the doors off with the lack of air circulating and no heating but with heating it could easily be put back.  There is an ensuite bathroom with toilet, wash basin and shower.  They call it a French Window to the garden, I'd say glass door.

The shower and toilet were disabled converted and they could really do with some modernisation.  But, saying that they work and you could easily live with them if you are happy to give it a good clean. 

Boot Rooms
Outside the Kitchen diner are two boot rooms.  One has had a toilet and sink put in it and the other had the dryer in it.  Both have been used for storage and are a mess.  The roof could do with replacing and is asbestos or you could paint over it with roof paint as there is only a small crack.

Bedroom 2 4.57m (15ft) x 3.66m (12ft)
Upstairs with built in airing cupboard and en suite bathroom with toilet, wash basin and bath.  This has walk through access from Bedroom 3.
I love this bedroom as it has character but, the stone wall will be dusty.  Also, like all houses in the area the chimney poses a problem.  There is a mark of damp which I've just ignored as that is one of the choices.  The weather last year was very wet and most of the houses in the area have the same problem.  Solutions are to wrap the chimney, take it off or have it shut off.  We had the same problem on the house we sold and it was deemed best to just leave it.

Bedroom 3 4.57m (15ft) x 2.44m (8ft)
This makes a lovely little bedroom, a dressing room or an office.  It has the chimney problem as well but as long as you keep heating in the house it will be ok.  Or you can have it dealt with.

Stone Barn 6.10m (20ft) x 3.96m (13ft)
This was originally a stable for the ponies that carried the peat down from the hillside with a crop processing room.  We have turned it into a small "play tavern" for our friends but in recent years it has been used for storage.  We will be taking the main decorations and the bar but the rest can stay.  It needs a good clean as it has not been used for a while and hay was stored in it for a few months.

THE LAND

There are "areas".  There is a sloping field.  I did keep ponies and sheep on it but it was steep so trees were planted on it for a small forest in the future.  They are now six years old but some haven't done so well and the goats last year didn't help.  This is a handy grazing paddock.
On the hill there is a store of mulch material for the trees which will help to keep the weeds down around the base.

At the top of the hill (which is steep but ok to get vehicles and a quad bike up) there are aviaries.  If you intend to keep poultry we would consider leaving the aviaries but the chicken coop at the top of the hill and the "wendy house" goose house will be removed at some point.
The aviaries have been abandoned and need to have work done to their floors to prevent the rats getting in.  We will be taking the plastic housing in the aviaries but the rest will remain. It needs a good clean out and some repair but the cageing is mostly ok.

The small caravan may have been removed by the time you see the land.  If it hasn't it will be taken with us and we are waiting for some help to move it.

The polytunnels are just rings as the builders took one end of the polytunnel down when they did the building work and the wind ripped it.  The other polytunnel was ripped off when it's door came open in a storm.  We can either take the rings with us or if you would like to use them we would be happy for a contribution towards putting a new one up at our new place.
The goat barn is breezeblock built.  The wind can be a bit fierce up at the top (which is balanced by fantastic views and plenty of sunshine on good days).  It was built so that grass can grow on the roof (or raised beds) as we had intended it for goat grazing but then thought better to put the planting out of the way of the goats!  We tried out grass on the roof and it held up there and grew well.  It has been divided up so that you can keep bucks without them breaking wooden walls and the 1m wide doorways are easy  to block up with dog gating or gates so that the shed can be almost open plan, 8 bays or 4 big bays with walkways. 

The main barn has a hay area and a main area.  The holes were where our pony decided she didn't like to be kept in (she's been used to grazing all her life) but the holes help with the damp problem as they help to cut down condensation by putting in more ventilation.
Again, we deep bedded the goats and with the Avian Flu restrictions we had to keep the poultry inside as well.  When we left we had to pretty much take the animals and go so there is a lot of cleaning out that needs to be done.

THE HOUSE

Outside it needs new guttering and painting.  Some plaster has fallen off of the boot room as the previous owners attached a hanging gate directly into the wall and the weight of it pulled the plaster off.  We never got around to fixing it so it got worse.

Inside could do with a wash over.  The silver paint in the Kitchen/Diner is washable.  We had dogs running through the house and this brought in a lot of mud dust.  As you will see the cobwebs have cobwebs and you would be well set for Halloween.  This just needs a good clean but as we have commitments elsewhere our time is mostly spent with reclaiming boxes and doing what we can.

There is mains electricity, a private water supply from a borehole, private drainage, oil central heating, secondary/double glazing and a telephone.

Broadband is a constant source of annoyance.  BT fixed it but if it gets bad again you have to call them as there are some points that give better reception than others.  You are better off getting a tablet with a hot spot and using that along with mobile devices.

Smallholding is a difficult lifestyle, it is a lifestyle choice.  I have loved it for nine years but the goat herd has outgrown four acres.  In the winter you will be snowed in on occasion if the weather is bad as they do not salt the road.  They have now given the road a salt box.  But, half the "romance" was to be snowed in when it is so pretty.  People in the area are used to it, run a freezer and keep enough food in that they don't care.

The house was lovely before I had little time to do much with it.  I won't bore you with the details but it could be a lovely warm home for you.  The plants outside have overgrown, the land is being kept mown by the shetland pony.  It is there for you to make your smallholding business work.

Please do not contact us if you just want to keep a couple of chickens and pets.  The land will soon run wild and overwhelm you.  You probably already know that you can keep one sheep per acre so keeping sheep is not ideal.  It works very well for pigs and goats, particularly if you are doing minimal/zero grazing dairy. 

We do not want to waste your time or for you to take on more than you can cope with.
The house needs work, not just a dust over.  The land needs tidying but if you have the willingness you can just get on with it and be happy.  The rent is low enough for you to make a go of it. 

We need the money from your tenancy so we cannot accept excuses for non payment of rent.  Make sure before you take up the tenancy that you can pay the rent and that you have taken your rose tinted spectacles off, jumped on them and you are looking at what you are going to do with a good business plan and enough money to carry it through.

It is a fair drive/bus ride to town and in my opinion the best way to make a smallholding work is to have one or both partners working in a paid job from the start.  You will not make money from roadside sales, there are very few passers by and most people keep chickens! 

If you are going into market gardening, bear in mind it is at 1053 ft.  That makes it harder.  Also Lluest Conscience is down the road, they are Registered Organic and have the market sewn up for veg boxes.

GOOD TENANTS WANTED FOR SMALLHOLDING


We are advertising the property on Green shifters and we are pleased to say there has been a lot of interest.

We are offering a farm business tenancy.  This is very different to a shorthold tenancy and can only be taken up by a tenant who is going to farm the land.  It is also a full repairing tenancy.  This means that the tenant accepts the property and land as it is and would be responsible for all repairs and necessary improvements.  That is why we are offering low rent.

It is a fabulous opportunity for someone who is keen to run a smallholding as a business and who  is keen on DIY.  It is not worth you wasting your time visiting if you ate not prepared to farm the land. The place is good for pigs and a few goats.  Cosmetically you would have a problem with market gardening unless you put everything in a polytunnel due to the altitude. Also there is a large and thriving organic grower nearby who would be severe competition.

We want to find the right person who is going to succeed.  We do ask that you tell us your business plan so we can help. We know the land etc.

We are sorry that we can't have long chats with you as we have been swamped with requests.  We are trying to draw up a shortlist and we are sure that the right tenant will be found.

The placr is ready immediately but we will needto keep sheds and pick up the rest of our things when we can.
 
I would suggest that one partner does have a job to start with.  Despite what the glossy magazines say you will need an income while you are starting up.  There are Farmers Markets (one in Aberystwyth on Saturdays) and places to sell things but the extra support is always helpful. 
 
GOAT SHED
 
The smallholding has been set up for goats.  The goat shed is breezeblock built.  It has been waterproofed but it would really benefit from a Weathershield painting to look a bit less like a prison block!  It is sturdy to keep the goats warm but mostly because it was designed to have a useable grass roof.  This idea soon developed into the idea of putting the Vegetable Patch on the roof.  That is a lot easier than trying to fence a vegetable patch.  It will get the most sun possible and any slugs and snails will have a wall to climb to get to it. 

I had the idea of a space in the middle where there could be a table and chairs to enjoy the evening sun and the view.
 
Alternatively it was originally designed to have a ramp or steps up to it for the goats to play on.
 
Inside it has firm dividing walls which make it easy to split up the goats at different times of the year and the rest of the year to have it open so that they can socialise and get out to enjoy the holding.  It can be either four big pens with access from the lower end.  It can also be eight small pens with a corridor down the middle.  The gaps are one metre wide so that easily fits doors and “dog gates” which are easily available on Ebay.
 
The building is breezeblock and that means that it would be really easy to tile an end room as a milking parlour.  That is what you need to get a license to sell goat milk and cheese etc to the public. 
 
There is a central drain so if you want to put wooden “skirting” along the pens and keep the straw and hay off of the central walkway you can wash it down which will help if you want a milking parlour.  If it is the end room then there is a way in/way out arrangement set up.
 
THE BARN
 
This has a “hay storage” area and a main open area which can be useful for goats or ponies (although not officially ponies). 
 
The hay storage area is useful for feed although there is a metal feed shed half way up the hill.  I would be prepared to leave the big metal drums which are great for storing feed in.  I have put them on tyres to raise them up as it makes it easier to get to the bottom of them to get feed out.
 
I will be taking the milking table with me as I am sentimental about it.  But, they are really easy to build.

 
SMOKER/CURER
 
Next to the barn there was an area I was developing to be a smoker/curer.  Not only could you raise your own pigs and then smoke and cure the meat for sale, you could smoke and cure other people’s produce.  The foundations and part of the wall is done.  It is an ideal area as there is a good flow through of wind.
 
CHICKENS
 
There is a large chicken area at the end of the field that would easily house plenty of hens for an egg business.  It needs a bit of work but it is ideal as it allows them to be free range inside.   There are two pop holes so they can be complete free range but if you want to go out, it is ideal as you don’t have to put them away.
 
PIGS
 
Various pairs of pigs have been successfully raised at Pengraig.  Pig arcs are available by negotiation but otherwise they will be removed as they come apart.  There is a horsebox trailer which has access to two fields which can alternate as pig fields (just plant in the other one, the rotavating is done!).  Some fencing needs repairing but that is all part of the fun and you could use an electric fence, that would make it really easy!
 
COMPOST
 
Pengraig was very rocky but over the past eight years I have built it up with manure and that has formed a very good soil.  There are piles of manure maturing which will be ready for planting this year.  There are raised beds here which would be left behind if I get the right price for the house.  They have produced some good vegetables in their time but last year were allowed to go “fallow” to provide a good source of food for the goats.
 
GOAT MOUNTAIN
 
This is a large lump with a flat top to put a table and chairs on to enjoy the view.  Goats love to climb so they love this “toy”.

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