Ten Things To Know About Buying Vacant Land

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Real Estate

Top Ten Things To Know About Purchasing A Vacant Lot.

 1.Location, Location, Location!

Do you want to be close to the schools? Or the golf course? Perhaps you want to live in a certain neighborhood, or something with a more rural feel to it. Do you need to be near a school, hospital, or public transportation? All lots are not created equal. Think about where you may need to be in the long term before you fall in love with a lot that may, or may not suit your purposes,

 2. Utilities

Are the utilities installed? There is a big difference between utilities installed, and utilities available. Many lots have the utilities already installed. But if they are not you’ll need to factor the cost of getting them to your lot. Ask your agent how much the associated fees will cost you.

 3.Septic or Sewer?

Determine if your has sewer service. If not you’ll need a septic system, or an alternative waste water system installed. A simple perc test will determine this. A septic system will cost approximately $7500 for a 1800 square foot home. The cost of alternative system can vary widely depending on geology of the lot.

 4.Geotechnical Survey

Geotechnical investigations are performed by geotechnical engineers to obtain information on the physical properties of soil and rock around a site to design earthworks and foundations for proposed structures and for repair of distress to earthworks and structures caused by subsurface conditions. Not all counties require this, but Yavapai, as well as Coconino county reqiure one. The cost for this is approximately $2500.00

 5.Permit and Impact Fees
Permit fees may include building permits, inspection fees, septic fees etc...

Impact fees may include roadway impact fees and sewer impact fees. Visit your county website to get a full list of all their fees.

  6. Setbacks                                                                                      

  Setbacks are the distance from a curb, property line, or structure within which building is prohibited.  Local governments create setbacks through ordinances and Building Codes, usually for reasons of public policy such as safety, privacy, and environmental protection.

 7. Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CC&Rs)
Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions are limits and rules placed on a group of homes by a builder, developer, neighborhood association or Homeowners Association. Homeowners Association. These limits may include height, size color and material restrictions.

 8. Owner Financing

Will the owner carry the note? With most banks not willing to lend on vacant property owner financing is becoming more popular. The owner collects interest while the land is being paid off, and depending on the terms negotiated the buyer will usually have several years to pay it off.

 9 .General Contractor
Whom you pick as a General Contractor is just as important as your lot choice. Make sure you do your home work here. A good, licensed general contractor can save you a lot of time, headaches and money. A good G.C. will take care of everything from the initial permitting to handing you the key to your new home.

It’s always a good idea to get a survey performed on the property. There are several types of surveys including an ALTA survey, but a standard boundary survey is usually sufficient for a contract.

 A good Realtor® will guide you through all you need to know. So If your looking for land anywhere in Sedona or the Verde Valley give me a call!


Douglas Eagen

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage