Owning land is quite different from owning a home! Maybe your intent is to build your dream home or hobby farm. Or possibly you plan to start an agricultural farm, use your property for hunting and recreation, or conserve to utilize tax benefits. Regardless of your intended use, any potential land owner should be aware of what to consider for long-term ownership and maintenance.
Land needs to be maintained. The amount of maintenance needed depends on the topography, vegetation, and improvements present. If the land has large, overgrown areas, it’s advisable to keep them bush hogged or mowed regularly. Pastureland can be grazed or mowed for bailing hay. Trees fall over time and need removal or cleaning up. Fences occasionally need patching. Additionally, any buildings on the land must also be maintained to preserve or improve land value.
Your land won’t be free from taxes, and it’s important to factor in these long term holding costs. There could be worthwhile tax deferment strategies to pursue for conservation, forestry, and other incentives.
If you desire to make land more functional for your needs, you’ll need to consider potential improvements. This includes investigating the zoning, permits, and restrictive covenants of the area before you change anything. Adding buildings, utilities and other improvements must abide by the local ordinances and laws. Topography and existing improvements also help to drive what improvements are best for owner needs, and how much they will cost.
Along with the things you must take care of, there are some things you should consider for your land, if you want to improve it or get it ready for building a home.
In most cases, utilities will need to be installed or extended to any potential improvements. It’s necessary to consider whether the land is already set up for utilities, if a well must be dug, propane tanks installed, or wires run for electricity. Also septic systems are more commonly seen for land tracts and acreage, while connection to the municipal sewer system is seen closer to the City. Cable, internet, and dish options can also vary depending on location.
Generating Revenue From Land
If land is purchased to resell as lots (improved or unimproved), it’s important to consider all options well in advance. Developers commonly improve land and develop it for real estate to be built and sold or leased. This It’s also possible to generate income from agricultural leases, tree harvesting, mineral harvesting, real estate rentals, hunting leases, tax benefits, and more.
What will owning the land cost you today compared to a year from now, or even a decade from now? It’s important to consider the long-term costs of owning land before you jump in, and develop a plan for using your land.
Owning land tracts and acreage offers a world of options, depending on the location, zoning, restrictions, topography, and natural capital.
Curious about the possibilities for your needs? Questions or comments from current land owners? Connect with Collin O’Berry of the Altamont Property Group today to discuss! Altamontpropertygroup@gmail.com or 828-772-1667.