If you’ve decided to custom build your next home, one of the first steps you have to make before you can build is to find the right land. This step is, admittedly, one of the most crucial and should not be taken lightly. Here are a few tips to help you find the perfect spot for your perfect home.
1. Scrutinize the location
Yes, the location of your land might seem like an obvious requirement, but there are some specific aspects you should consider.
Is it in a good school district?
Where do the county/city/state lines fall?
What property taxes might you be expected to pay?
Are all the amenities you need (like supermarkets, doctor offices, work) nearby?
Will you fit into the community?
How long is your daily commute?
All these factors should be considered carefully before you purchase land.
2. Visualize the future
Look beyond just imagining your own home in the space and deliberate on what future developments might be in store for the neighboring land. You could even do some research to see who owns nearby land, whether it’s been sold to a developer, or if it’s been zoned for commercial properties. There’s no crystal ball to tell you what’s coming, but you can prepare the best as possible.
3. Look at the view
Imagine your dream home on the plot of land you’re evaluating. Which way will it face? What view will you have out those windows? If you’re building a multi-storied home, consider what the view will be from the second story. Alternately, what view will you be giving others? No need to make enemies of your neighbors if it can be avoided.
4. Confirm available utilities
Vacant lots may require additional work for utilities to reach them — even the basics like electric, gas or plumbing. If some utilities are not available, you’ll need to factor the additional work into your budget. Is high-speed internet readily available in this location? If not, you may be paying outrageous monthly fees. It’s best to know up front what you’re in for and take that into consideration when determining which land to buy.
5. Check environmental conditions
You may want to have an inspector come check the environmental conditions. Here are several factors that should be evaluated.
Potential fire hazards
Any underground utilities
Depth of water table
Whether the land is a protected habitat
Again, the more you know about the property beforehand, the better you can anticipate any future issues and the more informed you will be to make decisions.
6. Understand site limitations/restrictions
Check your zoning laws or restrictions before you purchase a piece of land. In some locations, just being residential zoned may not be enough; you’ll want to find out whether you can build the type of home you want. Find out whether there are any other restrictions, like a homeowners’ association (HOA) that you should be aware of or that may limit your building options.
7. Partner with a professional builder
A professional home builder is invaluable during the land selection process. Since they specialize in building homes, they can evaluate potential lots and help you with some of the more technical details, like zoning laws, and will be able to provide some insight you may not consider. Meet with them first to discuss the facets you’d like in your custom home, and they will keep those in mind when helping you choose the perfect property.
Looking for land in Maine to build your dream home? Check out our current available properties.