REAL ESTATE- ON THE BLOCK- Compound interest: Six buildings provide opportunities
Address: 88 Windhaven Lane
Neighborhood: Afton, in Nelson County
Year Built: 1952
Size: 2,540 finished; 900 unfinished
Land: 2.0 acres
Agent: Jordan Hague, Equity Saver USA 434-977-7283
Curb Appeal: 7 out of 10
A quirky property in Afton, this parcel has the feel of a summer camp. Instead of an arts and crafts shed, though, there's a wine bar. The compound on two acres comprises six buildings.
About a 30-minute drive from Charlottesville, past nurseries and pick-your-own-berry farms, the house overlooks Afton Mountain. Owner Mike Lesich originally purchased the property with the intention of creating a bed and breakfast but realized it was more work than he wanted. This is the fifth house Lesich has renovated since retiring after 30 years as a meat and poultry inspector. He says he has invested about $150,000 in improving the place.
This collection of buildings includes a barn, currently used for storage; it stabled horses in the past and certainly could again. The two-car garage has a new door opener, and the building Lesich calls the "library" is a small but airy room with light coming in on all four sides, built-in shelving, and a tiled floor. The wine bar has a built-in bar and an under-counter fridge. A Dutch door, screened windows, and two ceiling fans keep air circulating on hot summer days.
Towards the back of the property is a private 900-square-foot cottage that brings in $800 a month and would have been where the innkeepers lived had the place become a B & B. It has an updated kitchen open to the living and dining spaces, a wood-burning stove, a good-sized laundry room and new full bath. Small slab patios lie off of the kitchen and a large bedroom with his and hers closets.
The main house is a sprawling ranch with a sunken family room accessible from the kitchen and dining room. Flooring varies from carpet in the four bedrooms to tile in the kitchen and family room and hardwood in the dining room and in the more formal, large living room. A wood-paneled office or den space that offers entry from the outside is separated from the rest of the house by the laundry cum mudroom. There are three full baths. French doors in the master open to a tiny deck leading down to an outdoor fireplace and bomb shelter (yikes).
The kitchen is roomy and somewhat updated with stainless appliances, newly tiled counters and floors, and original cabinets that have been refaced in a faux country style. A narrow pantry off the kitchen provides additional storage. An antiquated intercom system in the kitchen probably should not be counted on.
PTAC units, typically found in motel rooms, provide heating and cooling in the house, cottage, library, and bar, allowing the inhabitants to adjust heat when and where it's needed, but not providing much in the way of aesthetics.
The agent acknowledges that while the compound isn't for everybody, the right person– perhaps an artist, writer, or aspiring homesteader– would find it a great home.
Much of the property was overgrown when Lesich bought it, and some remains wilderness: a narrow creak runs through the back of the property near an abandoned chicken coop. Lesich chose not to conquer all the grounds, preferring to leave something for the new owners to do.
PHOTOS BY SARAH JACOBSON
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