You might not think there is much land left in DC but you’d be surprisingly wrong. Washington DC has plenty of lots and vacant land for sale throughout the community and surrounding cities and towns such as Arlington and Fairfax. These properties start at less than $20,000; larger lots ready to build can reach as high as $4,000,000 and of course, just about every price point in between.
Know where you want to buy.
This might seem obvious but location is truly everything and you need to consider not only immediate consequences but future ones as well. If you’re purchasing for investment purposes make sure that the land will have resale value and if you’re building, verify that the land is “improved” or can be improved, having access to utilities and water.
Consider a land survey.
It’s possible that you may not need a survey, or the land could have been recently surveyed. You should be able to collect recent data, but a survey is beneficial to chart out the boundaries of the property. Surveys are uniquely different, based on location and other variables; the cost could range anywhere from $300 to over $1000 depending on the type of land and requirements necessary. In addition to a boundary survey, soil tests might also be beneficial to support the weight of buildings and infrastructure. Environmental assessments may also be needed depending on where you’re building, i.e., wetlands or nature preserves. Because it’s hard to determine how a piece of land was used over 50 years ago, these tests and reports could save you from unintentionally buying land with contaminated soil.
Understand what it will cost with or without utilities, sewage, power and water.
Many pieces of raw land will not have the utilities hooked up yet. The cost can be thousands depending on how far away the property is from the nearest utilities. You might need to install pipes to reach city sewer lines, wiring or septic systems. This may need to be integrated in the cost and can significantly change the economies of owning and building on vacant land.
Understand the rules of getting out of the project if it doesn’t work out.
It’s always best to have an exit strategy just in case the plans fall through. The land may not be accommodating once you’ve had all the tests and analysis completed. However, having paid for your land, while it sits vacant, it is subject to property taxes. Turning it into a residence may be part of your exit strategy. Think the entire process through, from preparing the land for building, all the way through selling and/or living in it as a primary residence. [Source]
Consider all avenues and realize that building from the ground up will have its own challenges and unexpected hiccups. Buying land and building from the ground up are exciting, and yet sometimes stressful, undertakings. There are plenty of lots and lands that are fully buildable as they set.Start your online search here or please call me for a dedicated list of all current lots and vacant land that match your price range and your requirements.