Yakety-yak: Survivalist compound, complete with herd, asks $30M

A 312-acre ranch fit for the wannabe yak owner

(Illustration by The Real Deal with Getty Images)
(Illustration by The Real Deal with Getty Images)

In the market for 85 yaks? A seller in New Mexico has the perfect place for you.

A 312-acre ranch in New Mexico that comes with its own yak herd hit the market recently for $30 million, according to the Wall Street Journal. Owner Howard Mintz, a retired real estate developer who also ran a seismic construction company in San Francisco, spent more than 20 years designing and building the home to be entirely self-sufficient.

Built of reinforced concrete, the home has a solar energy system, multiple backup generators, a year’s worth of propane and its own water supply. The yaks roam the land, which includes a large barn, horse facility with an arena for indoor riding, hay shed, koi pond and guesthouse.

“If all hell breaks loose, you can come here and you’ll be OK,” Mintz told the publication.

The main house, which spans about 4,000 square feet, is only about 85 percent complete. Mintz has spent “tens of millions of dollars” on construction and about $1 million on tools and equipment.

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He even flew in contractors from Europe to install roof cladding made of zinc, but has had issues with contractors staying.

“I fired over 80 people,” he said, noting that he eventually found some talented local workers, some of whom have now been with him for more than two decades. “This is New Mexico and things are pretty loose.”

Keller Williams’ Claudia Mardel and Pam Sawyer have the listing.

The compound is the most expensive residential property for sale in New Mexico, topping a ranch formerly owned by sex offender and financier Jeffrey Epstein that was first listed for $27.5 million, according to the Journal, which cited Zillow. Epstein’s estate recently cut the price of the property to $21.5 million.

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— Isabella Farr