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Eyes in the sky: Blaine County couple goes to new heights trying to sell property

Carl and Heather said their property is part of a historic mine called the Minnie Moore Mine that produced lead and silver of high values dating back to the 1800s.

BLAINE COUNTY, Idaho — It may seem hard for some people to find available real estate when relocating to the Gem State but for one Blaine County couple, they can’t seem to sell their property.

“We get a lot of attention from the road, we get a lot of phone calls from the road and a lot of attention from the MLS,” Heather Johnston, the property owner, said.

The property is located about 20 minutes from Sun Valley, close to the Freidman Memorial Airport, in Bellevue. The 286-acre lot is looking for a new owner, but the couple said it’s been a struggle to find the right fit.

 “We are not getting the right kind of attention simply because it’s a very large piece of property and most of the people who call are looking for a single-family home,” Johnston said.

When Carl and Heather Johnston heard that the Allen & Co Conference or as some call it, the ‘summer camp for billionaires,’ was returning, they decided they need to get the attention of the conference attendees.

“Basically, most of the world’s wealthiest people will fly in and go to this conference and they will spend about a week in Sun Valley,” Heather said. “My husband and I were discussing whether or not we should just stand on the side of the road outside of the executive terminal.”

The couple is also realtors with their own company, Hallmark Idaho Properties, and went about their daily errands and buying some paint to touch up the roof was one of them.  

“I thought well wait a minute, if we are going to paint our roof, it would be great to put a sign on our roof and get some attention from these gets that are flying in,” she said.

So, after nine hours and two days, they painted a for sale sign with their phone number on the top of their flat roof.

“We are just trying to think outside of the box, trying to get attention, the one thing that these jets come in very close to the top of our house and they take off over the top of our house when they leave so I thought it was a great idea to try to get them hopefully looking out their window and read and call us,” Carl said.

The listing price is $15 million, the couple said that’s for valid reasons.

Carl and Heather said their property us part of a historic mine called the Minnie Moore Mine that produced lead and silver of high values dating back to the 1800s.

“The greatest thing about being an old mine is that the property taxes are really low, some of the claims cost us seven cents a year in taxes,” Carl said.

“The water rights are the bulk of this property, we have 300 inches of water with the priority date of August 1882 and right now with water being what it is, that is the price of water right now per inch, essentially we are giving the land away for free,” Heather said.

The couple admits the water's impact on the price tag is part of the problem. Heather mentioned that a lot of people would like to buy the water alone and completely strip it from the land, but the couple said it’s an all-or-nothing deal. 

They hope their new attempt to spark buyer interest is a successful one.

“The valley has changed around us and we acknowledge that and we welcome it, and it’s time for us to maybe go figure out what our dream is,” she said.

To contact Carl or Heather email heather@hallmarkidahoproperties.com or call 208-720-9082. 

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