Are you tired of all the inconveniences that come with real estate investing, like tenants and structural repairs? The landlord life is not for everyone, and it's getting old for you, it might be time to try something new.
Land investing provides a variety of profit opportunities. Whether you choose to invest in farmland or property for development, such as vacant lots and raw land, there is money to be made in land. Whether you want to develop an unoccupied property or purchase agricultural farmland, real property investments can create long-term and dependable revenue streams.
If you're interested in taking the development route, here are a few tips and tricks to follow when investing in your first tract of raw land.
As a savvy real estate investor, I'm sure you know that it's all about location. Whether you're buying a new rental property, a home for your family, or a vacant lot, location is one of the most substantial contributing factors to a property's investment value.
While you can usually improve or change the property itself, you're stuck with the neighborhood where it's located. For this reason, you should never forget that you aren't just investing in real property; you are investing in the location as well. When you have found a property you may want to purchase, check with a commercial real estate broker to learn more about the site and surrounding areas.
An unavoidable aspect of land development is local zoning laws, limiting the way you can use it. For instance, if you buy a property that's zoned for residential use only, you can't build a strip mall or a factory on it. It's nearly impossible to change the zoning for a tract of land, so you should always make sure the property's zoning corresponds with your development plan before you buy it.
In addition to zoning and the surrounding area's qualities, you should always investigate the land itself by conducting an Environmental Site Assessment (ESA). An ESA consists of four evaluation phases that will confirm whether the land can actually be developed according to your plan.
You'll also need to check with the local utilities about the process for setting up the electric, water, and sewage. If you have to cross someone else's property to access the land, you'll need to obtain an easement before you can start developing the land.
While you are probably already familiar with the costs associated with real estate investment, it can be more expensive to get started when purchasing land. First, since banks consider vacant lots to be riskier investments than real estate, you'll likely see higher interest rates than you're used to with traditional mortgages. To save some dough on interest, it helps to put down as much cash as you can.
Here are a few other back-end expenses to consider:
The American economic system was built on agriculture, and farmland remains an integral part of our economy and cultural heritage today. As one of the least volatile types of real estate, farmland is also a stable and relatively low-risk investment method.
The primary reason that farmland is such a low-volatility investment is simple: humans need food. As long as we rely on farmers to grow our food, there will be money to be made investing in agricultural land. Additionally, farmland will always retain value because it is a limited resource: there is a finite amount of land suited for agriculture. For this reason, farmland is rising in popularity among real estate investors looking for long-term and steady gains.
Strategic farmland investors can see dependable returns from both the appreciation of the land value and the income made from agricultural activities on the farmland itself. While agricultural land may appreciate more slowly than typical real estate investments, you can realize short-term returns through direct income, either by renting to a farmer or operating the farm yourself.
Agricultural properties come with a variety of tax advantages that make them an even more attractive investment. Here are a few ways the tax laws can work in your favor when purchasing farmland:
You don't need to have piles of cash to invest in farmland. Here are a few creative ways to finance an agricultural land purchase if you're not rolling in dough:
Whether you want to check out development land or farmland, it's essential to do your due diligence before diving in. If you do your research to make smart property choices, land can be an excellent investment and an exciting diversion from standard real estate.
Scott Royal Smith is an asset protection attorney and long-time real estate investor. He's on a mission to help fellow investors free their time, protect their assets, and create lasting wealth.
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