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Real Estate Blog & Resources

Raw Land

What is Raw Land? Raw land simply means unused, undeveloped land—property that is in an organic state, with no construction or subdividing. It’s real estate that has no sewers, no electricity, no streets and no utilities.

101044089Even when you can see the potential in raw land, it often can seem intimidating. If land has never been developed, particularly when it seems to be in wide open, sparsely populated territory, it’s impossible to know for certain how historically it’s been used. It’s also impossible to tell what condition it’s in underneath what you’re able to see. Although specialists can make some educated guesses for you, it’s also difficult to ascertain whether land may actually be in a flood plain or in some other undesirable location.

Perhaps the primary benefit of purchasing raw land is that, at least in theory, you can do whatever you want with it. As long as it is not restricted with any legal zoning or usage limitations, you may choose to cultivate it for farming, run livestock on it, hunt there, construct a home, or simply hold it as a speculative asset. Another reason to buy raw land is its affordability. It’s often feasible to purchase land that has not been developed in very large quantities, hundreds or even thousands of acres at a time.

Of course, you should always use caution before purchasing raw land. The best advice is to talk to the previous owners (if you can) and learn what they used the land for. If they farmed the land, you should have the soil carefully tested for any leftover pesticides before you sign anything. Another factor you need to consider is neighbors. When you purchase property in a master-planned community, such as a Bluegreen Community, you know who your neighbors are going to be. But when you’re purchasing raw land, it may be difficult to meet your neighbors, and it may be impossible to learn how they plan to use the land adjacent to yours. Finally, if you’ll require a loan to purchase your raw land, you should be aware: This is one of the most difficult types of loans to secure. Raw land is speculative, making it a risk many lending institutions are unwilling to invest in.

Building from scratch on raw land presents unique challenges. You’ll have to run full utilities to the property, an expensive proposition for a single-use owner. Also, you need to be familiar with the ins and outs of zoning and the processes required to get codes changed. As the owner, you’ll also be required to secure all appropriate permits and legal permissions before you can start to build. It’s true that raw land is usually cheaper than developed land. It’s also quite true that you get what you pay for.

Purchasing raw land can be stressful and daunting. Before you buy any land, you have to consider several factors, but raw land can present exponentially more complications. But if you select one of the sites for sale in a Southstar Communities development, we handle all of these worries for you. We go out of our way to make your land purchase and home building process as much fun for you as we can!