I Wish I’d Thought About That – Lot Selection

If you’ve built a home in the past, you may have said this to yourself after living in your new home for a few months.  Here are some ideas to consider if building a new home is in your future.

Let’s start with selecting a lot.  If you’ve narrowed down your lot choices, consider the following in making your final selection.

How do you want your new home positioned? Do you prefer morning or afternoon sun in the Master Bedroom, Kitchen or the main Living areas? Are there important views? If so, what room or rooms should have those views?

Are there trees on the lot and if so, where are they located.  Which trees will have to be removed to build the house?  Treed lots usually command a premium price, but will that price translate into value if too many of the trees are removed to build the house?

Are you thinking about installing solar panels?  Do the deed restrictions permit them?  If so, what are the rules controlling placement?  Will the allowable locations be optimal for the solar panels?

Will you have a swimming pool, patio or wood deck?  Lots with sloping grades are better suited for wood decks, while flatter lots accommodate pools and patios with less additional costs.

Ask your builder about lot easements. Most easements have been created to provide access to underground electrical, phone, cable TV, natural gas lines, water mains and sanitary and storm sewers. These are typically located along property lines, but they are often located in front yards.  Front yard easements are not usually a problem because they are typically located within the front yard setback. There are also easements for surface water drainage. On rare occasions, drainage easements run through the middle of rear yards. If the lot you are considering has such an easement, you may be limited in your use of the rear yard.

The earlier you discuss all the features you want to incorporate into your home with your builder or salesperson, the more likely you will avoid saying: “I wish I’d thought about that” after it is too late or too expensive to make changes.

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