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Purchases of rural vacant land have skyrocketed over the last 5 years. That growth is attributed largely to people finding more comfort in working remotely and wanting to escape impacted cities.
If you’re thinking about getting out of the big town you’re living in and instead, staking your claim to a few of the countless, empty acres that exist around the country, you’re in the right place.
This post discusses in-depth factors you need to consider to make sure the plot of land you buy is prepared to serve your intended purpose. We also touch on tips that will help you get that parcel of land for the best possible price.
Keep reading to make your dreams of land ownership your reality!
1. Know Your Goals and Learn About Zoning
Before you hit the rural vacant land market, you need to understand what your goals are with your land purchase.
Are you looking to start a farm that produces cash crops? Do you want to have a private camping ground? Are you looking to build your dream home?
You might be of the mindset that you just want to buy a plot of land and will decide what to do with it later. Unfortunately, zoning restrictions make that hard.
Zoning is a set of guidelines put forth by localities that specify what you can and can’t do with land in certain areas. If you buy a piece of land to build a house and find the land is not zoned for that, you’re going to be in for a rude awakening.
Learn everything you can about zoning and compare restrictions you find against your goals to make sure you don’t waste time with a plot that won’t forward your agenda.
2. Consider Infrastructure
You might find a plot of land that you love at an incredible price and try to seize it. Before you get too excited though, you need to understand that plots of land that are priced low without any effort on your part generally carry snags.
One of the biggest snags is infrastructure.
Is your land capable of accessing electricity? What about running water?
All of those things you may take for granted will need to be worked out with your locality and, assuming connections are possible, will certainly cost you money to get hooked up.
3. Walk the Land Before You Buy
Another factor to consider to make sure you’re making bids on a good plot of land is topography. While a lot of elements live under the topography umbrella, one of the most important is how level your land is.
Land that is untamed and hilly is expensive to build on. In a perfect world, you want at least a single portion of flat land within your acreage to give you the possibility of putting up a structure.
4. Find a Banking Partner
Now that you’ve considered factors that will help you find the right plot, let’s talk about saving money on rural, vacant land.
Unless you have cash on hand to buy the land you want, you’ll need to hook up with a banking partner that offers vacant land loans. When doing this, search for the lowest possible interest rate being offered by competing banks.
An interest rate that’s just 1 or 2 percentage points lower can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
5. Work With a Land Savvy Agent
Finding great land deals can be hard to do on your own. Fortunately, there are real estate agents that are willing to extend their expertise into the arena of land buying.
Locate an agent that knows the area you’re planning on buying land in well. If you’re having trouble finding one, talk to residential agents and ask for land agent recommendations.
Armed with a good land agent, you’ll have great deals pouring onto your desk and the best part is that sellers customarily will cover your agent’s fees.
6. Browse Listings on You Own
Don’t want to work with an agent? We’re not sure why you wouldn’t seeing as how they’re free as a buyer. You’re certainly welcome to browse vacant land for sale on your own though.
Hop onto popular sites like Zillow and specify that you’re looking exclusively for land. Depending on where you’re searching, you should be introduced to several purchase opportunities.
Note that deals offered through popular apps tend not to be the most affordable ones on the market. Agents have access to the “MLS” which is a private listing service that more likely carries the blockbuster deals you’re after.
Even when you find a low priced parcel of land you’re interested in, negotiate to get it cheaper. This is where a real estate agent can come in handy since they’ll do the negotiating on your behalf.
People flying solo can still mount a great negotiation campaign by incentivizing sellers with expediency, citing “comps” in the area, and by being willing to walk away from a deal.
8. Extend Unsolicited Offers
A trick that several, professional “We Buy Vacant Land companies” use to scrape up great deals is that they put out unsolicited offers to owners of unused plots. This process takes research but can yield amazing rewards!
Simply take note of vacant land in your area that has sat undeveloped. Then, go to the area’s city hall or search online to find out who owns that land.
With that information, you can message the owner and give them a low cash offer to take the land off of their hands.
Rural Vacant Land Is a Canvas for Your Dreams
The prospect of buying and developing rural vacant land can seem like more trouble than it’s worth. Take our word for it though that with a little effort, you can turn plots of land into just about anything you can imagine which may be deeply fulfilling.
We hope our tips enable your next land buy and welcome you to read more of our blog content for additional real estate guidance!