Buying rural residential property can be a dream come true for many families. The beautiful land, peace and quiet, and lack of traffic can be just a few of the reasons you want to move into a rural area. Before you make the jump, though, you should know what you need to watch for in order to make your move a profitable one.
Understand the Utilities
When you purchase a home in a suburban area, you have access to electricity and water without even thinking about it. Things are different with a rural property, though. If you have well water, you have to figure in many other costs aside from your standard water bill. You may need water treatments and/or water softeners, both of which can be expensive. In addition, you need to know that the water is safe. Before you purchase the home, pay a professional to test the water to ensure that it is safe and free from any chemicals or contaminants.
Your electricity could pose to be a problem as well. Ask the seller how long they typically go without power when there is a downed wire or outage for any other reason. Typically, homes in a rural area are much less likely to get their power restored in a timely fashion. Knowing ahead of time what you are in store for can help you make the right decision for your family.
Know what you will Receive When Buying Rural Residential Property
Just like when you purchase a home in a suburban area, there are things that do and do not come with the house. When buying rural residential property, there are likely many more things to consider. Things you may need to consider include:
- Special fencing
- Any portable structures on the property
- Animal shelters
- Farm equipment
Basically, anything that a seller can pick up and move begs the question – does it stay or does it go? When you know what stays and what does not, make sure you get it in writing in the contract. This way there are no problems down the road when you close on the home.
Who Maintains the Road?
A long, winding road might be beautiful, but it can also be costly. If you are responsible for maintaining the road, you should understand what you are getting into. You have to worry about things like annual maintenance, along with sudden issues that occur. Inquire about whether you are responsible for the road alone or if your neighbors also share a part in the process. Ask the seller how it works and whether or not the neighbors cooperate with the maintenance. These are all issues that you do not have to worry about when you live in suburbia and the city takes care of the streets.
Know the Boundaries
Never assume that you can tell where the rural boundaries are on the home you wish to purchase. Ask the seller and get a survey completed. This way you know firsthand what part of the property is yours and which part is not. This can be misleading when you look at a home and see acres and acres of beautiful land. If the seller does not specify which part of the land is his and which is not, you could think you are purchasing more land than you really have access to when the sale is said and done.
Understand the Zoning
Last, but not least, you should understand the zoning for the area. Is the home zoned for farm use, commercial use or strictly residential living? If you do not plan on doing any type of farming or commercial work, the neighbors might bother you if they will be participating in these activities around you. The seller or your real estate agent should be able to tell you the zoning to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Buying rural residential property is not difficult, but it does require a few more steps than a purchase in an urban area. There are things you need to concern yourself with that are not an issue in suburban areas. The more you know, the better off you will be when you decide to purchase your rural home!