There are many aspects of purchasing rural real estate that can be considered risky. One of those risks is buying low-cost land for sale. We’ve been experiencing a seller’s market and land has gotten expensive. The cost of buying land has led some to postpone their land search, while others have taken to scouring the internet for cheap land for sale to build a home, live off-grid, or just to have a quiet getaway to enjoy with family and friends.
Typically cheap land will not include any buildings, grid hookups, or water on the property. Amenities and buildings, even older fixer-uppers often add considerable cost. Sometimes land is priced low because it’s not in a desirable location. But if you’re looking at a land listing and the comparables don’t support the asking price, it could be a red flag. There are many reasons why that land you found is uncharacteristically cheap:
- An additional investment will be needed for site development costs in order for the land to be usable. Utility costs can get very expensive, depending on your location and proximity to public utility connections
- The property has building and zoning restrictions, setbacks or easements. Even small rules and regulations can interfere with how much of the land can be allocated for functional use
- It has liens, rights-of-way, easements, covenants, or other deed restrictions or encroachments on the property
- The property is located in a high-risk flood zone or fire zone
- The soil is low quality. The soil type of any parcel will have a great impact on the land’s value
- There are nearby nuisances such as unwanted noises, smells, or hazards
Pat Porter, broker with RecLand Realty, has been in the real estate business for over a decade. He is licensed in 6 states in the South and Midwest and he has seen many different scenarios play out with people that choose to buy low-cost rural land. In this video, Pat warns of some traps that are common with buying cheap land and offers some advice if you decide to purchase cheap property. Buyers should remember that there is a reason why the land is cheap. Pat encourages buyers to go about it the right way, so that they can get the property they want and enjoy owning it.
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