When buying acreage for sale, it is helpful if you know a few things to anticipate in the process. Here are a few things that will likely happen while you shop.
1. Anticipate the process of assessing the land to be more time-consuming.
Assessing acreage for purchase is far different from assessing a house for purchase. You are examining the attributes of the land, which can be a lot harder to do since some of those attributes won't even be visible with the naked eye. For example, when you are looking at a tract of land, you may be spending some time with an agent in an office, examining existing property boundary lines on a deed.
2. Anticipate the distance between properties for sale to be greater.
Even though things can be different in far-western states where there is a lot of vacant land available, most states are not going to have a ton of property listings all bundled in one area. You may spend a fair amount of time traveling from one location to the next just to look at properties the agent believes you may be interested in seeing.
3. Anticipate purchase terms to be just as important as the purchase price.
The purchase price is always a big deal when you are shopping for acreage for purchase. However, price is not the only thing you should be paying attention to when you shop; purchase terms can be just as important. For example, you will find more value in a piece of land that is priced higher if it is free of building restrictions and has some road frontage. Yes, you may be narrowing down properties according to price, but once you get beyond this initial element of the shopping process, there are a lot more important things to look at.
4. Anticipate that you will have to pay for your own land surveying.
Even though the land may have been surveyed by a prior owner, it is typically recommended that the land be surveyed by the buyer. This process will give you a clear deed of ownership.
5. Anticipate having to make a bigger down payment when seeking financing.
One thing buyers are often surprised to learn when they seek financing for a piece of vacant acreage is that the lender may ask for a bigger down payment. Acreage with no development or structures can be a bigger risk for the lender, so they may ask for a larger down payment to protect their own investment.
If you're looking for acreage for purchase, contact a real estate agent.