Real Estate

Your Dream Vacation Home in Yavneel: An Interview with Achuzat Ha’shvatim Developer & Project Manager Josh Adler

Josh Adler is a seasoned building developer and project manager with close to 30 years’ experience building private residential homes in Efrat and Gush Etzion. He is currently embarking on an exciting new project: Achuzat Ha’shvatim. 

Achuzat Ha’shvatim is a building project located in Yavneel, an idyllic moshava (agricultural village) in the lower Galilee. The project includes 12 plots of private land, almost half a dunam each, already zoned, approved, and ready for construction. 

Who is behind the project? 

My son Yair, a civil engineer and experienced building supervisor, and myself. I have experience in custom home construction since 1991; I’ve built many homes in Efrat and Gush Etzion, most recently “The Village” project in Efrat, consisting of 66 units. I will be responsible for the building, supervision and management of the entire project. The actual construction will be carried out under my auspices by a building contractor who will be selected when we’re closer to the commencement of construction. Of course, I only work with  registered contractors with the proper licensure, guarantees, and so on. 

It has always been of great importance for me to preserve good relationships with my clients. I achieve that through honesty, reliability, and high-quality work. They know that I’m here when they need me, and they can approach me with any questions or concerns. I believe this has afforded me a solid reputation over the years. 

Who might be interested in joining this project? 

We’re presenting Ahuzat Hashvatim primarily as a vacation villa project for the Shomer Shabbat English-speaking community, but it may also appeal to young families seeking affordable primary housing, olim searching for a tranquil home in Israel, retirees who want to live in a comfortable, accessible, and pastoral place without breaking the bank, people looking for an inexpensive piece of land to purchase even if they don’t have the funds to build right now, or people looking for an investment opportunity with the option of running a legal bed & breakfast up in the gorgeous Galil. 

My wife Marilyn and I  manage two vacation villas in Yavneel. We started two years ago and we already have many return guests—some booking a year in advance. They love it. You can read the reviews on the websites. And we’ve been enjoying a nice supplementary income from it. If you rent out your villa to vacationers when you’re not using it, the income it generates can help cover basic expenses and mortgage payments. It’s a win-win investment: a vacation home that pays for itself. 

Where is Yavneel? 

Yavneel is a quiet, historic moshava, a rural community in the lower Galilee. It was founded in 1901 by Zionist pioneers making Aliyah from Europe. The population is mixed: Sephardi, Ashkenazi, secular, traditional, Dati Leumi, Haredi, all types of fellow Jews, including English speakers. The current population is around 4,000, but the area is huge because it’s a rural town surrounded by fields, farms and wide-open spaces.  

While it’s not considered a religious moshava and is not closed on Shabbat, residents are respectful of each other and all religious services are available for those who want them: an eruv, shuls, mikveh, kosher restaurants, etc. 

Yavneel is only a 10-minute drive from the Kinneret and 15 minutes from Tveria, where there are large shopping centers, caterers, bakeries, etc. Tzfat is also not far. The moshava itself is peaceful and spacious, with beautiful views. 

Why build a vacation home there? 

Aside from the advantages I’ve already mentioned, Yavneel is recognized by the government as a “preferred area.” The government wants to attract residents to areas like the Negev & the Galil, so they offer benefits such as lower taxes and other perks to residents of those areas. Right now, prices are still very reasonable in the Galil. That may not be true for long, though. You can see how in the Negev, as areas developed, the prices have gone up quite a bit. Now is the time to get in on the Galil. We’re selling these plots of land for only 785,000 NIS, or a finished house with a swimming pool for only 1,875,000 NIS. In Efrat, where I live, an equivalent type of property would cost three to four million shekels. It’s a very smart investment on many levels. 

The lower Galil in general, and Yavneel specifically, is a popular vacation destination for Israelis and tourists alike, thanks to the lovely views, the proximity to the beaches of the Kinneret, the Golan Heights, historical and archaeological sites, hiking trails, and the relatively mild winter weather. The area boasts many attractions such as horseback riding, wineries, water parks, jeep tours, river rafting, etc. Nearby Tveria and Tzfat are two of the four Holy Cities in Israel, and there are many kivrei tzaddikim in the area, including such iconic figures as Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai and the Rambam. 

For all these reasons and more, Yavneel is an ideal spot for a vacation home. 

What kind of work opportunities exist for people considering moving there? 

There are plenty of employment opportunities in the general area if you’re willing to commute short distances. 

As I mentioned, Tveria is only 15 minutes away. Afula is only 35 minutes away. Beit Shean is also close by, and a new train line between Afula and Beit Shean recently opened. There are several new roads that have opened over the past few years, and more are being built. So commuting from Yavneel to any part of Israel has become much faster and safer, and the roads/public transportation network continues to improve. 

And, of course, the Galil is an ideal location for people who can work from home, because taxes and the cost of housing and education are lower. 

Is the project oriented primarily toward religious buyers? 

I am Shomer Shabbat, and the guests that come to our vacation homes are Shomer Shabbat. We have fully equipped kitchens at the villas and we want to be able to ensure their kashrut status. That said, I’m open-minded and don’t have specific religious criteria in mind for potential buyers. I understand that it may be important to buyers from certain communities to guarantee that the neighbors will be of a similar mindset, and I wouldn’t want them to feel uncomfortable. What’s most important to me is for my buyers to be the type of people who are respectful of their neighbors. 

I want to emphasize that if a group of likeminded families wish to purchase some units as a group, I will offer them a discounted price. 

How do you deal with the kashrut situation in the kitchen in your vacation home? 

As I mentioned, we rent to guests who are Shomer Shabbat, since we consider that the general litmus test for whether to trust someone’s kashrut. We keep a basket in the house for items that may have been made non-kosher and tell guests that if for any reason they suspect something has been made non-kosher, they should just put it in the basket, no questions asked and no worries. 

That said, we understand that people hold by different standards, and that may not be enough of a guarantee for some of our guests. Everyone is welcome to use their own judgement and of course we’re not offended if a family decides not to use the dishes and cookware we provide. 

If a family purchases a vacation home but lives far away, how can they make sure the house is maintained well? 

This is a very common practice in Israel. Foreigners and locals own thousands of vacation homes all around the country. There are reliable property management services that take care of properties for absent homeowners. I offer these services to my clients in Yavneel. 

The basic maintenance package I’ll offer will include general upkeep services so that your home is in order and ready for you when you come to stay there—gardening, pool service, checking up on the house on a regular basis, and so on. For people who want to run a B&B, I’ll offer an expanded package that includes laundry services, full-service cleaning, greeting guests, advertising, booking of reservations, etc. Everything needed so that the owners can be worry free while enjoying their investment. 

What does the price of 785,000 NIS include? 

It includes the plot of land (almost half a dunam in size), the pre-approved plans for a 133 sqm one-level vacation house including architecture, electrical, plumbing, structural and landscaping plans, and all infrastructure to the edge of the lot (water, electricity, communications and sewage). The plans for an optional 60-meter second level are also included in this price. 

While the price does include those plans, you are not required to use them. When you are ready to build, you can hire your own architect to design your dream home. 

After land is purchased, how soon will the house be ready? 

We’ll commit to 24 months, but it will likely be less. 

What is the layout of the project? 

It’s set up along a private street off the main street—a cul-de-sac with three plots on either side. Each plot is for two semi-attached homes, so with six plots, that’s 12 houses. Each house has its own private in-ground swimming pool. 

What is your plan for the future of this project? 

For me, Ahuzat Hashvatim is the next natural step after falling in love with Yavneel and running two successful vacation villas there. My vision is to eventually create a year-round vacation village there with dozens of owner families, enough to support an ongoing Shabbat minyan, a central building that can serve as a shul and/or kiddush hall/communal dining area for smachot, family events, etc. Sort of like a Catskills style vacation community. 

In the meantime, this is an amazing opportunity for anyone thinking about purchasing top-notch, affordable property in a beautiful and peaceful place—whether it’s to live in year-round, to enjoy during vacations, to host your own multigenerational family, to rent out or simply as a property investment you can build on in the future. It’s the investment of a lifetime: a place your family could enjoy whenever you like, whether for a planned vacation or spontaneous getaway. And it will serve as a gift to your family for generations to come—a place where you will enjoy each other and create happy new memories together. 

About the Project Manager 

Josh Adler is an experienced builder and project manager with almost 30 years’ experience. He lives in Efrat with his wife Marilyn and together they run the vacation villa’s Galil Getaway & Villa Bagalil in Moshava Yavneel. His current project, Achuzat Ha’shvatim, still has plots available for those with the dream of a family vacation home in one of the most beautiful and affordable places in Israel. 

For more information, visit  http://yavneel26.co.il/   

Call: 052-687-1133 or Email builder1711@gmail.com 

Please do three versions of this with the 3 different images in the folder – thx 

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