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Toby Beavers has specialized in Virginia historic homes since 2003. He has been a full-time realtor since 1996 and has held licenses in Florida, Rhode Island, and Virginia. He grew up in a pre-war building in New York City and summered in a Queen Anne-style summer cottage in Watch Hill, RI. He began purchasing 18th-century historic homes in 1984-86 in both Sharon, CT. and Sandisfield, MA.

In 1990, he moved to St Francisville, LA, and purchased the fabulous Como Plantation. To reach Como one had to navigate a winding, gravel, 6-mile driveway through rainforests (that Charles Audubon once hunted for his bird specimens) down to the Mississippi River. The riverport associated with Como Plantation was known as Brandon Landing and was now a deserted town. With two young children, Toby and his adventurous wife, Terri, chiseled away at the renovation over 4 years. With 75% of it completed Terri insisted a move was in hand as the nearest school was 35 miles away (after you reached the top of the driveway!).

They eventually sold Como to Gov Edwin Edwards. Edwards and his son were indicted 3 months later for insurance fraud and sent to prison for 5 years).

Driving to Maine they decided to hop the old Blue Nose Ferry and head to Nova Scotia where they found an old farm outside Yarmouth on 120 acres with 1 mile of ocean frontage and 3 miles of clam flats. All for a whopping price of $165,000. They jumped on it and while living in tents turned the old cottage into an exquisite, tri-color pink, Anne of Green Gable’s replica. Then the fog rolled in. And for days you could hardly see your hands. The Pembroke lighthouse foghorn was endless and it began to depress everyone. “Sell it they said!” So, they put it on the market for $800,000. When all was said and done, the home sold for $169k! The Georges Bank was fished out and the fishing industry died. So starving fishermen began dumping their oceanfront homes for almost nothing. Another costly lesson well-learned!

Arriving back in the US, Toby agreed with Terri that they both wanted to be around people with teeth and a bit more educated. So they threw a dart at the map of the US and it hit Charlottesville, VA!

Immediately, Toby began his search for an 18th century home.

At the same time, he began his illustrious career in architectural antiques. Toby’s specialty was 18th-century interior and exterior doors, and fireplace mantles. His motto quickly became, “buy high and sell low!”

After 2 years Toby threw in the towel realizing it was much easier selling an entire house than a set of period doors online.

Thus, Toby began his illustrious career working as a buyer’s agent selling Central Virginia historic homes.

Meanwhile, his search for the perfect Virginia historic house for sale continued…

Any Virginia historic homes designed by Thomas Jefferson were beyond their financial means (but thirty years before it would have been possible).

They eventually found an old farmhouse in Ivy and when they saw the amount of mature, unusual trees and bushes growing on it they purchased it immediately. “Who cares about the house,” Toby told his wife…” with 3,000 three-hundred-year-old boxwoods we found our new heaven. Just smell those bushes!” So, all four of them moved into the one-room garage apartment for the next six months and began the renovation.

The historic homes-qualified home inspector they hired did a miserable job and his poor inspection ended up costing Toby and Terri a new Carrier furnace.

They immediately went to work ripping it apart. 50 trips to the Ivy Recycling Center (the dump) and 5 interior walls later, an exquisite log room came into view.

Calling in an expert log cabin adviser, they were told the home dating to 1753. Amazing as it was sold as a 1940’s farmhouse. They eventually found the original owner was a surveyor for George Washington. He was usually hired when Washington visited Jefferson at Monticello. Washington would pick him up and together they’d ride into the Shenandoah Valley and began surveying the Valley for Lord Fairfax and the Crown.

They still live in The Shadows today and love it! However, there are days when they both wish they had a condo in Charlottesville but it would have to be in the fabulous, 1920’s Monticello Hotel on Court Square. “Nothing new for us,” they say, “But always hire a good home inspector”

Central Virginia Historic Homes offers exquisite 18th and 19th century historic homes for sale in Central Virginia including: Albemarle County, Charlottesville, Fauquier County, Lexington Va, Louisa County, Madison County, Orange County, Rappahannock County, and Warrenton Va. Period-styles include: Log cabins, Federal, Greek Revival, Italianate, Victorian, Edwardian, and Queen Anne.

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