The benefits of owning land are plenty. If nothing at all, owning land allows you to live a more self-sufficient lifestyle and gives you access to natural resources for hunting, fishing, gardening, and other outdoor activities. Unfortunately buying land can be decidedly risky for different reasons. From zoning laws and deed restrictions to terrain and soil conditions, it’s important to be informed before you make a purchase.
Here are some things to consider while you shop.
Before conducting your land search, decide on the purpose of the land so that you can narrow down locations that meet your needs. Are you looking for acreage to build a home and raise livestock? Or are you looking for land to develop into an assisted living facility? Getting clear on your vision is how you’ll focus your search.
If you’re not sure, you’ll have to try to find a property that can fulfill multiple needs or one with lots of potential.
Location and Accessibility
Land located too far away from civilization is more often than not difficult to access, which increases its risk factor. Look for land nearby so you can make regular visits and ensure the property is being cared for as it should be.
You’ll also want to be sure the land is accessible by well-maintained roads and bridges. Imagine needing to get supplies to the property or needing to make repairs urgently. If you can’t get there, you may find yourself in a difficult situation.
Find out about the topography of the land to be aware of potential natural hazards like flooding, wildfires, earthquakes, and landslides. These occurrences can not only damage your property but also put you in physical danger.
How do you find this out? Start by talking to local authorities and the state geological survey. You may also be able to find out by using Google Earth or other digital tools.
Before making an offer on any piece of land, make sure that you’re clear about access rights, zoning laws, mineral rights, and any other restrictions that could hinder your plans for the property. While most of these issues should be addressed in the deed, it’s best to research them further to make sure you know what you’re getting into and that your investment is secure.
For example, if you’re buying acreage to develop it into a commercial building, make sure that the zoning laws allow for such projects.
Buying land can be a great way to invest in your future, but it takes research and due diligence to make sure that you’re getting exactly what you want. Be sure to get clear on the purpose of the land, research potential natural hazards, and understand property rights and access to amenities before making an offer. Doing so will help ensure that your investment is a sound one.