5 Loaded Homes in the Pine Barrens

Sophisticated living? Roughing it with class? Actual farming? It's all possible in South Jersey's great natural reserve.

SJSRMLS image via Weichert, Realtors

Want to put aside the ways of the city and enjoy a more rustic lifestyle? You might want to consider living in the Pine Barrens of southern New Jersey.

Want your rustic life to have all the trappings of civilization still? Check out these five homes within the boundaries of the Pinelands National Reserve.

The 1,700-square-mile natural preserve was created in the 1970s to protect its unique native flora and fauna as well as the aquifer from which much of South Jersey draws its high-quality drinking water. Controls on development within the Pinelands mean that your wooded plot or hobby farm won’t find itself overrun by subdivisions, ever. (Unless, that is, it’s already part of one.)

The homes featured here combine all the creature comforts you expect with great natural settings. And at least two of them have enough land for you to farm if you are so inclined.

975 14th St., Hammonton (above) | 5 beds, 3 baths, square footage unavailable, $599,000

This Sixties rancher sits on nearly 30 acres of pristine land and has its own lake, views of which you can enjoy from its rear deck. Inside, there’s lots of room to stretch out, to entertain your family and friends in style, and to store your stuff. There’s also a handicapped-accessible in-law suite. A 1994 renovation has brought everything inside up to snuff, and its location in the portion of Hammonton that’s zoned for agricultural use means that you could try your hand at farming if you so desire. Since blueberry muck has been detected in the soil deposited in the nearby waterway, may we suggest that crop? Jersey blueberries are the best.

The lot may be subdividable. This home’s sale price was reduced by $25,500 on May 30th.

975 14th St., Hammonton, N.J. 08037 [Nicholas Polito | Weichert, Realtors – The Asbury Group]

SJSRMLS image via RE/MAX at Barnegat Bay – Manahawkin

4285 Route 563, Woodland Township | 4 beds, 3 full, 1 half baths, 2,400 square feet, $599,000

If you’re more inclined towards horsing around than growing berries, this 12-acre farmstead is for you. It already has stables, exercise areas and riding trails on the property, and you also have access to miles of state riding trails just beyond its back gate. The main home comes with an accessory apartment built in, so you could hire someone to tend to the horses and grounds while you’re away from your rural retreat. And if you’d still like to enjoy fresh fruit in season, you have the room and the soil to grow berries as well. (While you’re in the middle of cranberry country, we wouldn’t recommend setting up a cranberry bog on a plot this size.)

This home’s sale price was reduced by $25,900 on April 15th.

4285 Route 563, Woodland Township, N.J. 08019 [Patricia Romano | RE/MAX at Barnegat Bay – Manahawkin]

SJSRMLS image via RE/MAX Atlantic

5152 Venice Ave., Hammonton | 5 beds, 3.5 baths, 3,162 square feet, $699,899

If you keep your eyes peeled for a “builder’s special,” you can stop looking now, for this home is a “builder’s special” like no other. For starters, the builder built it as their own residence, and its location should make why abundantly clear. Your new home sits where a canal meets the Mullica River, and you have waterside frontage with bulkheads on both. You can dock your boats on the canal-side dock or relax in your hammock under the gazebo on the deck at the very tip of this lot. Inside, it’s loaded with extras like a central vacuuming system and a whirlpool tub in the master suite. There’s also a deck that looks out upon the water. There’s room to put in an in-law or home office suite too.

5152 Venice Ave., Hammonton, N.J. 08037 [The Scott Reighard Team | RE/MAX Atlantic]

SJSRMLS image via RE/MAX Atlantic

4610 Pleasant Mills Rd., Hammonton | 6 beds, 4 baths, square footage unavailable, $499,000

This huge custom contemporary home also sits right by the Mullica River, and the water is deep enough at your bulkhead for you to dock your boat. Lots of large windows and skylights flood the main floor living spaces with light and offer you fabulous views of the river. The soaring main-floor great room has a full-height stone fireplace, and there’s another fireplace in one of the three downstairs bedrooms. You can entertain your guests from either the large main floor deck or the one that’s by the water, and the upper-floor bedrooms have their own balconies as well. And if all this deckage isn’t enough for you, the Sweetwater Marina and Riverdeck outdoor bar and grill is a mere two miles away.

4610 Pleasant Mills Rd., Hammonton, N.J. 08037 [Susan Dunphey | RE/MAX Atlantic]

Bright MLS image via Paparone Builders

5 Hidden Creek Court, Medford | 4 beds, 3 full, 1 half baths, 4,400 square feet, $742,900

What you see above is not your new home but a builder’s model — specifically, Paparone Builders’ “Brandywine” model at Hidden Creek, a new luxury residential development a two-minute drive south of historic Medford Village. Medford Village, settled in 1762, is one of the oldest extant settlements in the Pines, and its center is filled with unique shops, boutiques, restaurants, cafés and an arts center. As for what your new home will look like? You can tell the nice Paparone sales representatives what you want it to look like: they offer several different elevations in this handsome Colonial model home, and they’ll customize it inside and out to your specifications. We can at least tell you that it has a cathedral ceiling in its morning room, a 12-foot-high one in its family room, and several places where you can put a fireplace.

5 Hidden Creek Court, Medford, N.J. 08055 [Paparone Homes]