Buying land in another state can be a great investment, especially if you live in a state where the price of land tends to be high. Even though the real estate market tends to be almost unapproachable by many, the price of land is relatively low and most importantly stable. You can either buy land in another state as an investment, develop it, or just simply resell it later for a profit, or you can use the land for yourself.
When buying land in another state make sure that you have a clear goal for the plot of land, from there you should focus on the location. Make sure that you know the risks of the specific state before buying land, some states are prone to tornadoes, blackouts, droughts, floods, and so on. Hire a real estate agent from that state and ask for a virtual tour of the land, after which you should definitely visit the plot of land before committing to buying it.
Even if you are on a tight budget there could be a nice plot of land just for you, although you might have to look outside of your state. A lot of people get intimidated by the concept of owning land in another state, and this is why you have to do your own research. The most important thing that you should do is to hire a real estate agent in that state that is specialized in selling land, you can even go a step further and hire a lawyer that will represent your interests.
You can buy land in another state without a real estate agent, but this approach can be risky and somewhat time-consuming. If you want to know how to buy land online then check out my recent article How To Buy Land Online ( Top 10 Tips ).
How To Buy Land In Another State
When it comes to buying land in another state, I have found that conducting thorough research and taking certain steps can make the process smoother. Firstly, I focus on identifying the specific state and region I am interested in, considering factors such as climate, geography, and local regulations. It is essential to familiarize myself with the laws and regulations governing land purchases in that state, including zoning restrictions, permitting processes, and any unique considerations. I rely on online real estate platforms and local listings to explore available properties, taking advantage of virtual tours and detailed property descriptions.
Engaging the services of a local real estate agent who specializes in land sales is invaluable, as they possess in-depth knowledge of the local market and can guide me through the process. I also visit the area in person to get a feel for the land and its surroundings, ensuring it meets my requirements and aligns with my long-term goals. Conducting due diligence, including obtaining a survey, reviewing property boundaries, and assessing access to utilities and infrastructure, is crucial.
When Buying Land In Another State Location Is Extremely Important
Not all states are created equal, and depending on your budget you will be most likely limited to just a couple of states. If you want to purchase a plot of land in another state just so you can resell it a couple of years later for a profit, how close the state is to you doesn’t really matter. On the other hand, if you are buying a plot of land in another state where you plan on building your dream house then how close the state is to your home state tends to be important.
Make sure you have a clear goal with the land, do not buy a plot of land just because it is cheap. Depending on what your main goal with the plot of land is, the proximity to the closest city is important, and having the utilities already on the plot of land will make your life a lot easier if you want to build your dream house there. If you want to buy land in Florida then check out my recent article Buying Land In Florida ( Top 10 Things You Should Know ).
Check Out The Cost Of Living In The State From Where You Want To Buy Land
The cost of living will dictate the purchasing power of the people living in a state, if the cost of living tends to be high then so will the cost of land, and usually the taxes will also be relatively high. No matter if you want to buy a plot of land in another state as an investment or to build your house, the cost of living will either make or break you. On the other hand, in states where the cost of living tends to be high more people will have a higher disposable income.
This means that if you buy a plot of land in a high cost of living state, you are more or less guaranteed to sell it for a nice profit a couple of years later. If you want to buy a plot of land in another state with the goal of building a house, then you should really look at states that have a relatively low cost of living. The price of land in these states will be lower, although the value of the land will increase in time but it will be slower than in states where demand for land is high and the cost of living is also high.
Check If There Are Nearby Utilities To The Plot Of Land
If you want to buy raw land then you can skip this part, especially if you want to resell it. On the other hand, if you are planning to buy the land and build a house then having access to utilities is extremely important. If you want to live in a homestead or in an off grid house, you might think that utilities are not important, although a lot of counties will not issue building permits in areas where there is no access to utilities.
In case you want to build an off grid home, make sure to inform yourself where you can legally do it, in the same state different counties will have different regulations and restrictions. If you want to avoid the most common land buying mistakes then check out my recent article Buying Land Mistakes ( Top 9 ).
Use A Real Estate Agent
A lot of people tend to avoid hiring a real estate agent when it comes to buying land, and I honestly can understand why. The problem with buying land in another state is that you will have to travel a lot in order to take a look at different properties. On the other hand, if you hire a real estate agent that is from the state where you want to buy land, and he is also specialized in selling land, then you will have a lot easier time finding a nice plot of land.
Once you have found a nice plot of land you can simply ask the real estate agent to make a virtual tour of the land, this way you will have a clear idea of how the land looks.
Use Google Maps
Most real estate listing websites like Zillow will have google maps incorporated into their listings. The simple fact that you can view satellite images of the plot of land can be priceless. An image is worth more than a thousand words, and with a quick glance at the plot of land you can easily find out if there are utilities nearby, and at what price the nearby plots of land are being listed. If you are buying the plot of land as an investment then you can see how the local town or city is expanding and where it will be in the next couple of years.
Know The Risks Of The Area Before Buying Land In That State
Every area, no matter which state you choose will have some risk, some have very cold winters while others have problems with tornadoes, floods, wildfires, earthquakes, and so on. Frequent blackouts and the lack of water tend to be massive problems in some states, and you should definitely know these risks before buying a plot of land in that state. The more problems a state has the more problems you can also potentially have if you decide to buy a plot of land in such an area. Why make the problems of a particular state to be yours, so try to avoid states with a lot of problems.
Know The Zoning Of The Land
In some states, the zoning laws are fairly relaxed while in others they can be extremely strict. Make sure to find out what zoning the plot of land has, this way you will know what you can do with the plot of land. Some sellers will try to sell their plots of land for fairly cheap and claim that the zoning can be changed by the buyer, do not fall for this. If the plot of land tends to be larger then it can have several zoning, make sure to find out where the residential or the mixed used zoning is, this is where you can actually build a house.
If the residential or mixed use zoning is not in a good area of the land, or it is extremely small then you can use it as leverage when negotiating or simply skip on buying the plot of land.
Visit The Land Before Buying It
Under no circumstances buy a plot of land in another state without visiting it. Although a virtual tour will probably answer most of your questions but visiting the plot of land is extremely important. Once you are at the location you will clearly see how the area looks, and you can see the bigger picture. Some land buyers will also rely on their gut feeling when visiting a plot of land, which will dictate if they will buy the plot of land or not.
This is something similar when buying a house, the first time you visit a house you have a gut feeling that “this is it”, at which point no other house seems interesting to you.
- Before buying land in another state, thoroughly research and familiarize yourself with its laws, regulations, zoning requirements, and any specific considerations related to land ownership and use. Understanding the state’s real estate market and local conditions will help you make informed decisions.
- Seek the assistance of local professionals such as real estate agents, land surveyors, attorneys, and financial advisors who are familiar with the specific state and its land purchasing process. They can provide valuable insights, guide you through the legalities, and help you navigate any state-specific requirements or complexities.
- Whenever possible, visit the land in person to get a firsthand understanding of its condition, surroundings, and suitability for your intended use. Additionally, conduct thorough due diligence, which may include obtaining a land survey, researching the property’s history, checking for liens or encumbrances, and ensuring access to necessary utilities.