Land can be a great investment in many of the Florida markets right now. Of course, if you do it right. There are so many reasons people purchase land. Well, for one, they aren't making anymore of it. Below are a few tips that I recommend when buying land.
1. Work with a Realtor® who specializes in Land Purchases. It is imperative that you work with a Realtor® that has experience in buying and selling land, as well as negotiating land deals. They can run the preliminary due diligence on the land and help you with zoning, access and fair market value. They also can help with negotiation on your behalf. There are so many other items to negotiate besides price. Terms seem to be more important and to makes sure these terms are negotiated fairly working with a competent real estate broker or real estate attorney is imperative. They can draft the agreement that complies with the most current laws.
2. Purchase before the potential of upcoming trends. Review the City's and/or County's planning commission comprehensive plans to see what they plan to build on next. Also, look at the Future Land Use maps for the area. This could be a great investment if you do your homework.
3. Ensure that the property is clear of any liens. It is so important as the buyer to even do your own due diligence. An attorney or a title company can check into the the title of the property and the deed. This usually also happens after making an offer that has been accepted and is in the due diligence period or this can be written into the contract.
4. Do not rely on the old survey. Before closing it is important to get your own survey done. A survey can only be relied on by the party named in the surveyor's certificate. So it is important that a buyer is named as a party in the surveyor's certificate to help avoid disputes in boundary or easements and other property characteristics.
5. Do your own due diligence as well before buying. Look into zoning in the area you're looking to buy. What are your plans with the property? Residential home, land for commercial or retail use, industrial? Or are you buying for an investment and what would investors expect. Are there amenities or roadway improvements that currently exists or are being planned. How will they impact the property values. Your real estate professional, such as myself, can also help you with these tasks.
6. If you are planning to build, consult a builder before choosing a site. They have ideas about how a new home or commercial space can be designed to use the space, both aesthetically and legally. They can also point out potential problems with the property that could arise during the build.
7. Downpayment of at least 30% is usually standard on a land loan. May it be a long-term (20 years or more) or a short-term loan (24 months or less) be prepared to put at least a 30% down payment for your loan.
8. Hire a Land Planner Realtor.com suggests hiring a land planner before your purchase the land. They specialize in land and scrutinize it for flaws and issues that may arise later. They check things like vegetation, wetlands, soil type, water table, slope, access and even environmental issues.
About the author: April Ann Spaulding, Realtor®, Land Specialist and Professional Photographer specializes in homes with acreage, agricultural, recreational and transitional properties throughout Florida.