Tips for Buying Land

Have you been considering purchasing a piece of land for building purposes or for recreation? Here are some things to consider when purchasing property.

1. Financing. Land loans can be tricky- not every bank/lender will lend on vacant land. When they do, it usually requires a larger downpayment. The first step when purchasing any property is getting pre-qualified and talking to a lender about the downpayment, closing costs, monthly payments, etc. Farm Credit is a great resource if you are looking for a lender that specializes in land and farm sales.

2. What is the lay of the land? Is it suitable for building? When in doubt, call a home builder and ask them to visit the lot to see if it would suitable for a home. 

3. Utilities. What utilities are at the property? Will you need to install a well and/or septic or is it public water and sewer? Is there electric at the property? What about high-speed internet? Is there natural gas at the property or will you need to use a propane tank? These are very important items to check into. They can be very costly and you don’t want any financial surprises after closing. 

4. Boundaries. Always ask and see if there has been a recent survey done. Ask the owner about boundaries, property corners and any possible property line disputes. Some owners only have a tax map. Please keep in mind that a tax map usually provides a general idea of boundaries but is not as exact/accurate as a survey. Tax maps have also been wrong (especially in West Virginia) so make sure you do your research.

5. HOA, Covenants, and Restrictions. Check with the seller to see if there are any covenants or governing body that has control over your property and what you build and use it for. Some properties have deeded restrictions which a title attorney should be able to find or a title search.

6. Check the zoning. What do you plan on using the property for? If you plan on putting a commercial building in, is it zoned residential? What will it take to re-zone? These are all questions to look into. Ask your agent and they can point you in the right direction to find out more information.

If you’re considering buying land or acreage, please reach out to us for more information. We can represent you as a buyer and help you find your dream property!

Our office line is 301-722-0190 and our email address is