Because a custom home is a blank canvas prospective buyers build it on an empty lot. Buying a lot with particular features – a wooded area, distance from the roadway, proximity to water – can give you greater control over your vision.
However, buying a lot brings its own challenges, and you shouldn’t go in blind. Brief yourself on the basics before you drop serious cash!
Loans Are More Complicated
If you’re buying a lot, it will likely come with its own set of loan conditions. The reason for this is that a pre-built home serves as its own collateral. A lot is just empty land, which is a lot less appetizing on its own to banks. As a result, you must be prepared for a hefty down payment – as high as 50% – and different loan terms.
Rural buyers may have some advantages. Certain areas qualify for Section 502 loans, which will significantly lower your interest rate.
Make Sure It’s Ready for Building
If you’re buying a lot in a master-planned community or existing neighborhood, the folks in charge have likely given you a ready-to-go lot. But elsewhere, you can run into all kinds of unexpected issues. Either way, invest in a professional inspection.
You’ll need to check for water drainage in the ground, as well as toxicity from stuff like mercury. If the lot was recently filled in, it can also be too unstable for a foundation. Certain features may not prevent you from building, but they could affect certain features of your home. If you’re dead set on a lot with some serious issues, your architect may be able to work around them.
Depending on the lot, you may also need to set up power and water access. This can be a very cumbersome and expensive process, and may require cooperation with neighbors, utility companies, and local government.
Zoning Can Affect Your Design
While your builder can create the house of your dreams, even they are forced to comply with local zoning ordinances. Some of them are simple (don’t build on the edge of the property, ask neighbors before building an easement driveway), but some of them can be quite obtuse. For instance, you may be forbidden from making a second story, or held to strict standards for outdoor wiring.
Are you looking to build a custom home on your own lot? Bold Construction builds beautiful custom homes across the Triangle! Contact us today and let’s make your dreams a reality.