Faulkner Farm in Santa Paula, the home of the University of California’s Hansen Agricultural Research and Extension Center, sold for $3,700,001, one dollar more than asking, when escrow closed on March 5.
The farm was put up for sale in September, after the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources decided to move its agricultural research center to the Oxnard area. Faulkner Farm was bought by the Graf family, a local family that has owned historic sites before, and was bought with cash. The UC Regents, who sold the property, were represented by Scott Dunbar, and Kristi Ginski of Keller Williams represented the buyer.
The property is 27 acres in Santa Paula, and has three main buildings: a 126-year old Queen Anne-style Victorian house, a 134-year old large red barn and a smaller barn built in 1982 for a Budweiser commercial. It was purchased using funds donated by the estate of Thelma Hansen, a UC Berkeley graduate and Ventura County farmer who died in 1993.
The UC Ag division decided to sell because the upkeep on the property “required the diversion of significant funds” from its core mission of agricultural research and education, according to a statement the university released when it put the property up for sale, and because a property on the Oxnard Plain would allow researchers to study berries and other crops that thrive in that area. Advisory boards recommended the sale of the property for more than a decade before the move was taken.
The University of California is looking for 40 to 70 acres on the Oxnard Plain to serve as the site of the new Research and Extension Center and is also exploring a possible collaboration with CSU Channel Islands. The money gained by the sale of the previous property will be used to buy the new property.