Post details: How to Select a Building Lot - Part 2


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How to Select a Building Lot - Part 2

Site Specifics

Site SpecificsBefore proceeding, you should have chosen a house plan or have a good idea of the dimensions of the house you plan to build. Make sure the plan fits within the buildable area of the lot. Watch out for lots with rock outcroppings, embankments, or other physical characteristics that will reduce the buildable area. Check for unusual setback lines or utility easements. Easements usually run along one side of the lot, but in some cases there may be more than one easement, or they may be plotted through the middle of the property. Consult with your builder or developer to check the location of easements.

Your lot's relationship to the sun will play a major role in how your new home lives. With a southern exposure for the mass of windows at the rear of the home, a house benefits from solar rays during most of the day. An eastern exposure takes advantage of morning sun, while a western exposure captures the afternoon sun. Beware that western or southern exposures can make a backyard porch or deck too hot to enjoy. If you're building in a northern climate, remember that your front steps and driveway can be constant trouble in the winter if they do not have a southern or western exposure to help melt ice and snow.

If you're a gardener, look for lots with maximum sunlight for your backyard gardens. If you want showy landscaping at the front of your home, make sure it gets enough sun. Corner lots often provide a large side yard in addition to a front and back yard and can offer more flexibility for growing plants.

Soil and Land Use

Lots in subdivisions benefit from the research and scrutiny of road, sewer, and electrical contractors. To satisfy creditors and public officials, a subdivison's developers and contractors must submit their property to a flurry of tests that ensure the land is suitable for houses. Acreage sites might not offer such reassurances, so it's wise to find out what lurks beneath the surface. Unstable hillsides, sink holes, and other problems can turn your dream home into a nightmare. The existence of bedrock under the topsoil can drive up construction costs. The price of a soil test is a bargain if the site you're considering has serious problems.

Better Homes and Gardens



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