Friday, August 5, 2011

My Criteria for Land

As I am actively looking to buy land, the following are the ideal requirements that I have given to real estate agents.  If a parcel of land meets all these requirements, I would be amazed.  This is more a set of semi-flexible guidelines.  If the land fails to meet too many of these guidelines, then it is removed from consideration.  Google Maps is a fantastic resource to rule out / rule in the majority of these requirements.

1.   20-40 acres is the goal (less if the land is ideal, more if the land is cheap).
2.   Land should be dividable.
3.   Relatively flat, but the major slope should be toward the south or west.
4.   No hills or mountains to the south or west that would cause significant shade.
5.   No easements.
6.   Absolutely no Associations.  Will consider a Covenant if it is very limited in scope.
7.   Flowing water (river, stream, creek) on the land would be great. Ponds would be nice.
8.   Well on the land would be great, but the ability to have a well is mandatory.
9.   No more than 25% of the land in marsh or wetlands.
10. No more than 25% of the land in "untouchable" wildlife or resource habitat
11. No large power lines bisecting the land.
12. Not bordering a major road or highway.
13. Ability to have multiple living units on the land. Plan to have parents live full/part time with us.
14. Within 30 minutes of a decent sized shopping area.
15. Within 60 minutes of a moderate sized city.
16. Ability to discharge firearms on the land without legal or neighbor complaint.
17. Ability to raise crops and livestock on the land without restriction.
18. Bordering a state or national park or other land that will not be developed would be great.

Please let me know if you know any criteria that should be added to this list.


  1. We have relatively the same criteria for land as well and I have 2 words for you: New Zealand.

  2. Any way to quickly look at the "county" plan for the land? I.e. make sure you won't be living next to a future land-fill.

  3. Pihl Pastures - I have seriously looked at New Zealand in the past. I may work there for a year or two in the future as a physician. We will see.

    John C - I wonder how you can look at that... any ideas?

  4. We're looking outside Wellington on the North Island and outside Christchurch on the South for a move in the near future. The plan is to jump over there next year for a month to check things out and get a good lay of the land then go from there. Trying to find someplace/some culture where we can be as self-sustainable as possible...

  5. #14 is the best.
    -- your wife

  6. That's a long list of consideration, but that’s quite understandable, as price range for lands don’t get cheaper these days. Lands are good investments. And like any other investments, you would want something that will yield great returns. I hope you found the land you were looking for! Jen, TowerPoint