Buying a piece of land can be a very satisfying feeling. After all, we are not so very far removed from the days of the Wild West land races when families would compete in a race to put down their stake to claim land. But today, the process of buying land has become far more complicated. If you are buying rural country property, the complications increase again. In this post, learn six things you should do before buying rural property.
1. Commission a land survey to verify property size and contents.
With cities becoming increasingly overcrowded, a land survey isn’t often on the menu. But when you get into buying 2, 3 or 10 acre lots, you want to be sure the acreage you are paying for is the acreage you are getting! Along with this confirmation, a land survey can tell you a lot about other potential perks or pitfalls of the property in question. Water sources, utility lines, metes and bounds (boundary lines) and other features will all be detailed in the survey.
2. Meet your neighbors and learn from them about local life.
After living in the city, you know how easy it can be to live right next door to someone and not see them for months (or ever). But in the country, that neighbor living 2 acres over on the next lot may become your lifeline in an emergency.
In addition, with a smaller community and fewer local resources, living out in the country can feel like living in a small, spread out town. And in small towns, there are few if any secrets. So just be sure you meet your near neighbors before you buy to see if you find them welcoming and hospitable. You will be glad you did!
3. Consider working with a buyer’s agent.
Especially if this is your first time buying a piece of country property, you may stand to benefit by working with a buyer’s agent to purchase the land. This way, you can learn what questions you don’t know to ask, get expert advice about whether the land is fairly priced, find out the ins and outs of country complexities such as easements and water rights, and have an advocate on your side should negotiations become complicated.
4. Get an insurance estimate in advance.
Just as you never want to put yourself in the situation of purchasing more car than you can afford to insure, you also want to be sure your new land comes with manageable insurance costs. Title insurance is definitely something to consider, especially in case you find that toxic or hazardous waste has previously been stored or dumped on the property. Consider as well extras like flood insurance if your land is located in a floodplain.
5. Be sure you can get the services you need.
Imagine living out in the country on your new land, and you go to pull up the internet and…nothing. You don’t want to find out too late that your area doesn’t get service. Be sure to find out your options for internet, cable television, etc., before you buy the land.
6. Calculate the total cost of moving your life into a rural situation.
This calculation should include any extra equipment, services, vehicles and other items required to manage and maintain your country property. It should also consider less tangible costs such as travel for medical services, airport transportation and work.
By carefully considering the total impact of making a big change from city to country living, you can be sure now is the right time to make the move and feel confident you have the resources to make it a success.
This post was originally published on RISMedia’s blog, Housecall. Check the blog daily for top real estate tips and trends.