No, we’re not kidding. See how you could win a stunning home and an adjacent farm for a very small price.

By Hannah Bruneman
February 14, 2019

A 3,100 square-foot house in New York could be yours for just $150—and a well-crafted writing assignment.

The owners of the 1870's Victorian house, Tim and Maggie Lott, have set up a competition to select the new owners of their home. They’re asking that interested buyers write an essay along with the $150 application fee.

Image courtesy of Summerland Farm Essay
Summerland Farm Essay

A five-paragraph essay to be exact. Remember those? The essay should be written with the following theme in mind: “What owning a 5-acre farm property would mean to me, us and/or my family.”

The Lotts are looking for an applicant who can live out their dreams in this home on Summerland Farm. It could be the perfect place for a quaint bed and breakfast or the future home of a loving foster family. The Lotts are encouraging applicants to explain their plans for the home in the 500-1,000-word essay.

This home contest comes in the wake of another woman who gave away her house in trade of a $25 application fee and a 350-word essay.

To keep things fair, the Lotts have selected impartial judges to read the essays, none of which have any relation to the Lotts or have a vested interest in the property. The winner will inherit the house and all its appliances, plus the five acres of land it’s built on, a horse-ready farm with a tractor, and a chicken coop. Oh, and $10,000.

It’s not a bad trade for a middle-school-level writing assignment and a little spending money, if you ask us. There’s even a $1,000 prize for second place and a $500 reward for the third place winner.

The home is located just 30 minutes from the upstate Finger Lakes Region in New York. Inside, you’ll find five bedrooms and three baths, including a mother-in-law suite on the second floor.

The house is by no means crumbling or out of working order, but its new owners may need to do a little upkeep. Of course, creaky floors or drafty rooms are a small price to pay for the character of an old Victorian home. It was featured on Cheap Old Houses, an Instagram account much-loved by fans of fixer-uppers.

The Lotts ensure that they have worked with real estate attorneys to make this a legitimate and fair contest. They won't open the property to visitors but plan to update their website with pictures of the home.

All rules and regulations can be found on the contest’s website. The Lotts express the love they’ve had for their home of 18 years, and the happiness they’ll find in seeing another family grow with it.

The hard part isn’t deciding if you’re going to apply, it’s deciding which of the many dreams you want to live out in this Victorian dream home!


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