Post # 1
Anyone have experience buying land? My husband and I are considering this option, and putting our own home on it. But the thing that is the biggest roadblock to me is how to set up utilities on a lot that doesn’t already have them. Anyone know how this works? Who even does all that? We would like to put a small home on a piece of property, possibly prebuilt/kit/or alternative (like a yert). I don’t think it would be too inaccurate to call us hippies. We live in the Bay Area in California and are looking for a way of living that has less impact on the environment.
I don’t even know who to ask in terms of a project like this. Or how to figure out if a piece of land is even buildable. Anyone have any pointers?
Post # 3
@iloverocks: We were going to do the same thing, but it cost way too much. A gal I went to school with did this–bought a piece of land that didn’t have anything hooked up to it. She had to call the electric company in the area and get a quote. I suppose you could call the city as well. No one will be able to give you a perfect quote at this point, but you might be able to get some more information regarding hook up of utilities.
Sorry I couldn’t be of more help :-
Post # 4
I would think the local or state government would have some kind of FAQ on their website. The only practical expreience I have of buying land is random people showing up at our house trying to buy my parent’s extra lot which wasn’t even for sale.
Post # 5
@iloverocks: The power company should be able to give you an estimate, but it could not be very accurate until they know specifics. When we had friends do this they had to pay the power company to run the lines for them and then a separate private contractor to deal with hooking up their home… I know the county planning and building dept. should be able to tell you what you can do with your piece of land- the county assessor’s office may be able to help also. I would encourage you to get a title report as well. It may not tell you what you can do with the land but is very important in terms of possible liens, lawsuits, neighbor’s easements/accesses, water rights, etc… VERY important when dealing with raw land. Just because you see a water source on your land doesn’t mean you have any rights to it whatsoever- it could have been deeded out to someone else before you and the only way to know that is to rely on the seller or a title report…
Post # 6
If you really want to be a hippie you could do solar power. You don’t necessarily need a landline, just internet so check how that works in the area – if there is a wireless option of you need to run the line in. This is usually my biggest issue on an undeveloped site. Perhaps there is some kind of water collection system you can use for non drinking water. You’d need a septic system and a water purification system or bring in water and store it somehow for cooking/drinking. Heating/cooling could be a number of things depending on your area – the climate – and design of the house. I might talk to some “green” residential builders or someone who specializes in sustainable design.
Buying the land isn’t a big deal as long as you do it the proper way. Make sure its zoned to be lived on and for farming and there are no liens/issues with the property. DH and I purchased some farmland a little while ago and it was no issue, just some special forms had to be filled out because it is protected agricultural/farmland. Check with the county you’re buying in.