2019 Idaho Real Estate Blog

Finding the right homesite is all about your valuation Main Idaho Real Estate Insights

We get a lot of clients looking for building lots or land so they can build and when we ask for criteria for their search many times the answer is "it depends..."

People often have a hard time narrowing down their options. They want both a large number of acres and a location that is close to their family, friends, work and services. The balance for many is how many acres can they afford and at what location.  They are attempting to evaluate each opportunity. Do they enjoy the convenience of location more than acreage, which puts them further away from the ease of the city?

One of the first places to start is asking if you looking for something in the mountains, foothills, valley, or desert? Many times the answer is still "it depends?" Here are three questions you can ask yourself

  1. How much land do you really want? What is the minimum that would work?
    How many animals are you going to have. How much gardening will you really do? How much privacy will really make you more secure. If the land backs up to BLM land wouldn't that make you feel like you had more land?

    Be aware that Panoramic Views and Water add to the value (and cost) of property in Idaho. A lot of people dream of having a mountain getaway. They want a place to hear birds and watch the elk from the front porch.
  2. How much home can you afford?
    What is the total budget? If the property has well and sewer, that is  fantastic but if not add 30 thousand dollars as a base line #. Keep in mind this number can go up. What if the water is deeper? What if your water needs more filtration? If you are on a budget that is so tight there is no room for errors, we recommend thinking further into this. Maybe you can wait and save up more money or work on your credit score so you can get a better interest rate.
  3. What will it cost beyond the land and home to make it into your dream property?
    Many people start thinking about building and then start to add in fencing, adding a large shop or outbuilding and all the things they want to make the home theirs, even simple things like blinds. All of a sudden the cost to move escalates? How much additional will you need to spend to take care of the property, like vet bills for your new cows or horses.

Idaho Mountain Community

That being said, it is good to be real about what you want without unraveling the dream. Maybe you will have to scale back or maybe we should take a good look at an existing homes on acreage.  The success of the entire project really starts with the purchase of the land. Can you accomplish your goals with the amount of land on a specific property? If you do move forward you will need to allow time to do your due diligence. This includes not only inspecting the property but also looking into a well. A local well driller may be able to share their experience of what other clients paid for a well in that location. Also, you will want to meet a builder at the site and get their opinion of the lot and the home you wish to build.

Another unknown in building in the mountains, foothills or lot on a slope is the engineering costs. Someone will have to evaluate your lot to determine what needs to be done to ensure your home stays in place and does not shift or slide from where it is originally built. A land engineer will dig deep holes to determine the quallity of the homesite. Some insights. One person we know found that their land was an old dump site and there for the soils were not very stable and strong. They had to dig much of that out and replace it with "good" dirt.

Search for Land

Posted by tlangford at 1/11/2019 2:10:00 AM
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Michelle Penick, Build Idaho Client Real Estate Services

Michelle Penick

208.629.0217 |

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