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What constitutes a buildable property?

By Chad Garteski

Tue, Apr 29th, 2014
Posted in All Ask the Expert

One of the most frequently asked questions when dealing with the sale of rural land is whether or not a given property is buildable? To further qualify the question, most people are referring to a “permanent dwelling” or a home when they ask. If you are thinking of selling land, having an approved buildable site significantly increases the value of a property relative to an otherwise similar property that is not buildable. Likewise, if you buy a property with the intent of building your dream home, it is a pretty big letdown if you find out you cannot get a building permit after you own the land. There are a number of factors including but not limited to; slope, flood plain, tillable soils restrictions, physical access and population density ordinances that must be taken in consideration. The other thing to keep in mind is that most municipalities have separate ordinances for what is referred to as a “cabin”. A good first step in researching is to contact the local zoning/planning administrator. Getting started on such research is always a little intimidating and as a service to both buyers and sellers, I am able assist in finding answers and asking the correct questions surrounding the buildable aspects of a property.

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