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What To Know When Buying Residential Lots And Land?

Jones Ethan
What To Know When Buying Residential Lots And Land?

Have you ever dreamed of buying land and building a house as per your wish? 

Well, as we know that land is a scarce commodity. So buying land or plot and building your dream house is a matter of pride. But, the process of buying land is different from buying a house. It is a complex process and a lot of risks are involved. Certain precautions need to be taken before signing the dotted line.

So do not let your dream turn into a nightmare. Consider the below-listed factors before buying a residential lot.

1. Location: 

Location is the most important factor to be considered in any real estate transaction.   Top realtors in San Antonio have thorough knowledge about the area. A residential lot should have easy access to amenities like public transit, schools, parks, market, highways, and so forth. Also, it should be close to your workplace so that it does not take a long time to commute. Moreover, the precise location of the lot in a particular area should be considered.

For example, a plot located at the end and near green space is more worthy than a plot adjacent to a busy roadway in the same neighborhood. Don't buy land you can't build on.

2. Availability of utility sources: 

Electricity, sewer, water, and phone connections are essential in our everyday life. Setting up these services is a big challenge and headache and also costs a lot of money.

A house or condo for sale in San Antonio has this utility built-in. But all vacant land does not have these utilities. So before buying land make sure that city water supply, gas, electricity, phone services, and sewer connections are available. If you plan to buy land in a remote area or near a beach these utilities may not be available.

If sewer, water, and electric supply are not available then make your offer contingent to allow you to install these necessary services. If the land is not hooked up to a sewer system then you need a specialist to conduct a test to ensure that the soil on land can handle any leakage from a septic system. In absence of water, the connection makes sure to buy contingencies to allow you to dig a well on the land.

3. Zoning and deed restrictions: 

Zoning restriction makes it difficult to develop a property as per your desire. So with the help of San Antonio real estate agents, find out if the land you buy is allowed to have a residential structure built on it. Also, find out if there are any other deed restrictions:

  • Building additional structures such as sheds or detached garages. 
  • Making a mobile or modular home on the land.
  • Restriction for a minimum/maximum house size.
  • A number of homes can be built on the lot.

Also, make sure there is no plan to build a highway or other infrastructure, or widening existing roads through your land or the nearby area. Any such plans may end up losing your land.

4. Proximity to the road: 

A road maintenance agreement and a deeded right-of-way are needed if the land you wish to buy is not accessible by a public road. The road maintenance agreement states that everyone on the road agrees to help with its upkeep. If it’s not a public road, those who live on the road may need to maintain it. Also, the deed should give you and the future owners the legal right to access the land. 

5. Environmental and natural hazards: 

Find out if there are any environmental hazards on the land such as old buried oil or gas tanks. Decide who would be responsible for removing and cleaning these hazards. Also, conduct environmental tests to check the quality and composition of the soil. The soil of the land should not be contaminated.

Houses cannot be built on contaminated soil. Also, the land should not be located in a flood-prone zone or hilly area. Survey to identify the boundaries of the property. This will help to know if any encroachments are made by the neighbors on the property. It's best to buy land that already has a completed survey, geology, and soil reports.

6. Easement: 

Before committing to buy property find out whether there’s an easement on the title of the property. An easement gives a legal right to another person or entity to use your property for a specific use. For example, an easement on your property may allow others to cross over your property to gain access to other property. This may intrude on your privacy.

7. Finance: 

Availability of finance is not easy for purchasing land. Banks usually do not grant finance to buy land. Only a construction loan is available. Lenders offer a land loan for a shorter term with a higher down payment. Here the land serves as collateral and if, you fail to pay the installment the lender can seize and sell the land to recover its money. You can also apply for an unsecured personal loan which comes with a higher interest rate and shorter terms.

8. Agent: 

Buying land is a complex process. It requires negotiating special clauses, filling out the purchase contract correctly, and finding a construction agent. All this requires the expertise of a real estate agent. San Antonio realtors have handled several residential lands closing successfully. Even during this current pandemic, they have arranged virtual tours for properties.

Bottom line: 

To build a customized house according to your liking your first step should be to buy land to build on it. Good planning and research will help you in finding the best land and building your dream house without any restrictions.


Jones Ethan
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