If you want to build your own home rather than buying an existing structure, one of the first things you'll need to do is purchase a plot of land to build on. This first step is a lot more complex than it might seem. Buy the wrong land, and you may find you're not able to build at all -- or that you need to modify your home plans significantly. To ensure the rest of the building process goes smoothly, consider these factors as you look for a plot of land to purchase.
Is the land zoned properly?
If the land is zoned industrial or commercial, you won't be able to build a home on it! Similarly, if you plan on operating a business out of your home and the land is only zoned residential, you'll need to be sure your type of business will be allowed. Contact the local zoning board directly and ask them how the plot is zoned, and what restrictions the zoning implies. Don't rely on websites that deliver secondhand zoning information -- you can't afford for them to be wrong!
What's next to the land?
If the lots next to the land you like are also vacant, also ask the zoning board how they are zoned. You may find out that these plots are industrial or commercial, which means that a business may go up when someone buys them. Consider whether or not you really want to live next to a business before you buy the land.
Will the land require specialized building plans?
It's always easiest and cheapest to build on a flat, well-drained plot of land with stable soil. That does not mean you can't build on a hill or in moist ground with the proper modifications to your building plan. However, doing so is often more expensive and takes longer. If the land you're considering has some challenging terrain or poor drainage, get in touch with your builder and ask them how it might affect your building costs. Then, take this increased cost into account as you decide whether or not this is the right plot of land for you.
Is there access to sewer lines, power, gas, etc.?
This is more important in rural areas, where there very well may not be gas lines, electrical wires, or even public water access on some streets. If the land lacks some of these connections, you may either have to pay to have service extended to the area, or find an alternative -- like a well, septic system, or solar panels. Calculate the costs of such modifications now so they don't surprise you later on.
For more information, contact a business such as Mirabella.