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Buying Land To Build a House

5 Things To Consider When Buying Land For Your New Home

Buying the right lot for your new home is a critical step in the home building process. From regulatory issues like zoning and permits to the varying costs associated with site preparation, choosing the right land will save you money, minimize your risk, and ensure you get the most out of your investments.

If you’re looking to buy land to build your new home, this article highlights some things you need to consider before taking the plunge.

Is the land zoned for residential?

Zoning rules vary significantly by region, but their most general purpose is to separate residential property from commercial property. Zoning laws can also regulate lot size, setbacks, placement, height/minimum size of the structure, and even your home’s exterior finishes.

These laws also change over time, so it is essential to know your local laws and be 100% confident that your building project meets those requirements.

Although a separate issue, subdivision covenants and restrictions may also restrict your use. Therefore, you should review these documents before purchasing the property.

If you’re looking into purchasing a lot that seems undervalued, do your due diligence before making an offer. There are often reasons why lots haven’t sold at market price. Cheap doesn’t necessarily mean you got a good deal; it usually means you will pay more for it in the end.

What about utility hookups?

Utility hookups like water, power, sewer, and communication services are vital parts of any home. So how can this affect your build cost?

If you are building in a rural area, you may not have access to municipal sewer and water hookups, which means you will have the additional costs of drilling a well and install a septic system.

Many lots may say “utilities are nearby,” beware of this vague statement and verify, before purchasing the land, the cost of your running your utilities and make sure you have accounted for all utility cost in your budget.

Land Clearing & Site Preparation

The cost of clearing your land differs from lot to lot. Building a house in a relatively flat open field will cost less than a house built on a heavily wooded lot off the side of a mountain.

Some specific land clearing step includes:

  • Land Survey
  • Demolition and Removal
  • Removal of Underground Infrastructure (for previous homesites)
  • Timber and Brush Removal
  • Erosion Control
  • Resloping
  • Grading and Dirt Replacement
  • Costs can range from $5000 – $70,000 depending on the amount of work that your land needs.

    What's your timeline?

    Considering everything you have learned in this article, locating and preparing a lot for a custom home can take a little time. Ensure you have enough time budgeted to complete the necessary steps and be prepared for costly surprises if you rush into things unprepared. Contact our experts if you have any questions.

    Are you financing?

    Most people don’t have the cash available to buy the land outright, and that’s why finding the right mortgage advisor can help you find the right financial product for your project. Ask your lender about these different types of loans. There are many different ways to structure loans for home building projects; make sure you have done your homework to ensure you are making the best decisions.

  • Land or Lot Loans
  • Construction Loans
  • Construction to Permanent Loans
  • Let's get started today

    Building a home is not without its stresses, and Tomorrow’s Homes wants to help you as much as we can. No matter what phase of the project you’re on, our experts are always available to answer your questions. Our superintendents are involved from the beginning, helping you apply for permits and preparing your land to be a home site. We also offer site improvement credits that can help save you thousands. Contact us today to get your project off the ground.

    Article By Chase Crumley
    September 3, 2020