McAdam sells lots for $1 to lure new people to village

Land is going for the rock-bottom price of $1 in McAdam as the village in southwestern New Brunswick tries to stimulate growth.

McAdam mayors says near giveaway of land could rejuvenate community

The mayor of McAdam hopes the offer of cheap land will bring new residents to the community many people know for the preservation of its historic train station. (Joe McDonald)

Land is going for the rock-bottom price of $1 in McAdam as the village in southwestern New Brunswick tries to stimulate  growth.

McAdam, about an hour's drive southwest of Fredericton, is offering 16 serviced residential lots for next to nothing.

Mayor Ken Stannix said the goal is to revitalize the village, which has a population 1,151, according to Statistics Canada.

The village hasn't sold any lots yet but has received more than 100 inquiries from all over Canada. Five people have said they want lots.

"I have people flying in from Ottawa to have a look at the land," Stannix said. "I also have some people coming in from Nova Scotia.

"I'm pretty confident at least five of the lots are gone already."

The lots are spread out over four locations in the village — two locations with five lots and two with three lots.

"We formed a McAdam community action group … about five years ago and we were looking at how we could change the fortunes of the village and have it expand and move forward," Stannix said.

"About two years ago we started securing the property, and then it's taken two years to get to this point where we could actually offer it up."

Return on investment

McAdam Mayor Ken Stannix says the lot sale could bring new ideas and energy to the village, as well as new people. (CBC)
​​Stannix said the village has spent about $2,500 on each lot to get it ready for prospective buyers.

The lots are just building lots, with no buildings on them, but there may be trees and shrubs that may need to be removed.

While the municipality will lose money in the short term, Stannix said the program will get the money back in other ways.

"That return will come in the form of property taxes," he said.

"It'll also come in the form of new people in the community, children going to our schools, people buying product at our stores, getting stuff from the post office."

Expects new energy, ideas

Stannix said there will be other, more intangible, benefits as well.

"I think most of all where that return will come is the new ideas and the new energy that these new folks will bring to the community," he said.

There are some conditions on the purchase of the land.

A deposit of $2,500 must be made on the $1 lots.

Talk about a bargain. The village of McAdam is offering plots of land for one dollar. McAdam mayor Ken Stannix says he's been getting a lot of interest. 8:30

Stannix said this is to make sure people aren't "flipping" the land and to pay for legal fees if the buyer decides not to move to the village.

The deposit will be refunded when the buyer builds a home on the property, which has to be done within two years.

Current residents of McAdam are also welcome to purchase the lots, although Stannix said this hasn't come up yet.

Anyone who's interested in the land can go to the village website or contact Stannix.

With files from Information Morning Fredericton