One of the hardest property types to purchase is vacant lots. We have compiled a checklist for you to work through if you are in the market for some land. There may be diverse reasons for you to buy land and this will define the questions you need to ask.
Purpose- Why are you buying the land?
Use- Will the land identified suit your needs?
Cost- Is the land within budget when you include the land, building, legal and survey costs?
Re-Sale- Will you be able to realize a profit on the sale?
Once you have narrowed and defined what it is you actually want, you can begin to start asking more specific questions:
Questions to ask the seller or agent
Are there any rights-of-way or covenants on the property?
Are there functioning common facilities (water, road, septic)?
Does the site have access to electrical power, sewer, natural gas?
Is there potable water on the site?
Is the lot buildable?
Has the site passed a perc test that is still valid?
Is there adequate road frontage?
Is there a high seasonal water table, or low-lying areas subject to flooding?
Are there steep slopes or unstable land that might require special foundations?
Is there adequate access for construction equipment?
Is there enough drainage from the land?
Questions to ask a lawyer
After speaking to the seller and builder, there may be some issues left unresolved. In this case, you should talk to a lawyer.
Will you own the water and mineral rights?
What should I add as contingencies to the bid?
If title problems are found how much time and what is the cost to resolve these?
Will I get a warranty deed or is it necessary to purchase owner’s title insurance?
Have you checked out the neighborhood by day and night?
Have you considered the different seasons and the impact on the land?
What are the future plans for the area, any new roads or major infrastructure expenditure in the pipeline?
Any nuisances in the area, smell from a pig farm or factory fumes?