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How to Buy Land

Before you can start building that dream home, you need to find the perfect lot. Experts share tips on finding the perfect plot of land.

By Jessica Covert

Jun 2014

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1. Location, location, location. Stacey Clem, a realtor at Coldwell Banker, says the realtor’s mantra definitely comes into play when looking for the perfect lot. Clem says to compare lots to other nearby properties to make sure you’ll be getting the best value and appreciation from your home later. Neighborhood amenities like swimming pools and tennis courts are also things to consider when you’re looking at purchasing a lot.

2. Know that the lay of the land is also important. The land itself poses different questions when purchasing a lot. Clem says slope affects a lot’s ability to accommodate a well or septic tank. If the lot is particularly steep, a steep driveway may be required, and you may have to address the potential for water to run off toward your home. Potential buyers should also examine how a house might fit on a given lot, Clem says. 

3. Find a lot before planning your home. Doug Pitts, custom builder and owner of Doug Pitts Construction, says it may be hard to find a lot to fit a floor plan that you’ve already made. Since lots can sometimes be hard to find (and lots with specific features can be even harder), Pitts recommends finding a lot first and then making plans for your future home.

4. Save yourself time by using a realtor and a builder. Justin Zimmerman of Wilhoit Properties says getting a realtor involved can be helpful. They know about properties you might not, and they have the expertise and experience to help you make a good decision. Zimmerman also says a builder can help you plan a home to fit the lot you’re interested in and your budget.