1) The zoning is appropriate for the use intended.
Being zoned for the kind of home you want to build is your first hurtle. Working with a broker or realtor can help make sure every plot you see is ready to become a home.
2) The property has passed a Perk test.
You can’t have a private well or septic system without one. A Perk Test, short for Percolation Test, is a soil evaluation that tests the rate at which water drains through soil. The results of this test determine whether a property is suitable to hold a septic system. No septic, no home.
3) Know the restrictions for subdivision and setbacks.
Before subdividing or developing land, it’s important to understand the private and public restrictions. Public restrictions include local building, housing and health codes, zoning restrictions and subdivision regulations, while private restrictions include covenants and conditions found in deeds and other written agreements. It may be necessary to do some digging to learn about all the restrictions on a piece of land.
4) How will the natural grade and forestry affect your building design vision and functionality?
A sloping lot might afford a great view of the valley below, a tree filled lot might feel like your cozy spot in the woods, or a flat lot might appear to be a blank slate, but each has special considerations that impact building and costs. Having an idea of the kind of house you want to build can help determine if the lot is suitable for it.
5) Consider the utilities and services, especially internet, available for the property.
It’s easy to fall in love with the idea of your own private paradise in a remote spot, but working from home and having modern conveniences are a reality check. Your utilities might need be very different from what you’re used to or may not be available at all. Only you can decide if that’s a choice that’s right for you.
Best case is to look at land with your eyes wide open. Work with a realtor to find several options then visit those locations with your builder to discuss what kind of home might be best suited for the land and what aspects of the location will impact cost.