by Laura Mueller
Real estate investing is often heavily focused on physical properties. But investing in vacant land can provide major returns, and may just be one of the best real estate investments that you can make.
Unlike other types of real estate, vacant land requires minimal upkeep to maintain, and is more about investing in the right location at the right time than anything else. Of course, that doesn’t mean it’s always easy, or that all pieces of vacant land are equally valuable. So if you’re new to real estate investing and considering vacant land, check out the three vacant land investment tips below to make sure that you put your money where it counts.
Tip #1: Look (and Plan) Ahead
The value of vacant land is primarily in its potential — in particular the possibility that it may be prime real estate for future commercial or residential development. In order to hold that promise, however, the land needs to be properly zoned, with the right entitlements to ensure that your big plans for the future are actually achievable. After all, you’re not going to have a lot of luck selling your land off to a developer if they can’t actually use it.
When considering a plot of vacant land, be sure to get a full picture of what the land can and cannot be used for. Also take into account the topography and what sorts of utilities are already there versus what you’ll have to spring for. Cheap land isn’t so cheap if you’ll need to raze it and install water and other utilities before it will be appealing to buyers.
Tip #2: Tally Your Taxes
Vacant land is hardly a one-and-done purchase. You’ll have annual costs that you’ll need to factor in to your investment budget as well, and depending on where you’re buying and how long you’re planning to hold the property before you sell you may end up spending more in taxes than you ever actually bargained for. Be sure that you understand your tax commitment, and that it’s in line with your current and future financial planning.
Tip #3: Think Short Term
In general, you always want to be thinking of getting a return on your investment sooner rather than later. A lot can change in over time, and those changes could make your land less valuable. The sooner you can flip it to a new investor or developer, the less risk you’ll incur in terms of market changes and dips.
It won’t always be the case that you can turn around and sell your land, but timing should absolutely be a significant factor in your purchase decision. If you see the short term potential in a piece of vacant land and happen to have the funds to go all in, go for it. If you see the potential but it’s a couple decades off in the future, move forward with a little bit more trepidation. That’s not to say you can’t make a good long term land investment (plenty of investors do!), but that, as a new investor, it might not be the best way to get established.
Always take your time with any land investment. With a healthy amount of caution — and a whole lot of research — you can make sure you invest in land that will pay you back in dividends.
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by Laura Mueller
We talk a lot about investing in land for the purposes of commercial and housing developments, but those aren’t the only types of smart land purchases. Recreational land, which is defined as any type of land used for (you guessed it) purposes of recreation, including parks and playgrounds, camping grounds, nature trails, and so on, can also be a smart investment, particularly if you’re not really interested in undertaking a massive building project.
There are two types of recreational land: personal use and public use. And in both cases, the investment is more about passion than profit — though there are plenty of ways to capitalize on the latter as well. If you’re thinking of investing in recreational land and want to know why it’s a great choice, here are four reasons to consider.
1. It keeps your money safe
With proper upkeep, recreational land can hold on to — and expand on — its value over time, making it a smart and stable place to store some extra cash. Good recreational land can also improve the areas around it, thus helping to drive up interest and property values, both of which mean that if you want to sell later on you’ll be set up to get a hefty return.
2. It beautifies your community
There’s something to be said for the utility of having a little bit more green space. While businesses and houses serve their own important purposes, recreational land simply makes a place prettier to look at. Open skies, rolling hills, and a spot to enjoy nature are valuable in their own right, and are markers of prosperity in a town. Sure it means giving up space that could be used for another big box store or parking lot, but is that really so bad?
3. It provides opportunities for profit
Depending on the features of your land, you may have quite a few opportunities to collect a profit. For example, rent out camping sites, or if you have a lake, rent out kayaks and canoes. If you have a big enough tract of recreational land, chances are there is some sort of activity you can entice people to pay for, though make sure you get the right permits first. And if you’d rather just let others enjoy the land for free (or keep it to yourself), that’s fine too.
4. It’s a retreat
Many people who invest in recreational land do it so that they always have a place to go to when they need to get away from it all. Think of owning recreational land like having your own little slice of paradise, free from the hustle and bustle of your normal day-to-day. That alone is a pretty sufficient reason to invest.
Recreational land isn’t for people who are looking to make a major return on their land investment. But what you might not gain in dollars you can certainly gain in other ways. If you’re interested in purchasing recreational land, look for vacant tracts that appeal to you and then check out their zoning designations. You should have no trouble finding a property that meets your needs and provides you with a beautiful space to call yours.
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by Caroline Kirby
Whether you like to fish, snowmobile, boat, hunt, hike, or just get outside to enjoy nature with your family, Wisconsin may be the place for you to invest in vacation land.
If you don’t know much about Wisconsin then you may only think of cheese and long, harsh winters, but there’s a lot more to the Badger State; especially when it comes to land!
A Natural Beauty
Minnesota may be known as the “Land of Over 10,000 Lakes,” but Wisconsin has closer to 17,000 and you can check them out here. Apart from an impressive amount of lakes, Wisconsin also has some pretty neat land facts, like:
- 52 state parks
- Over 150,000 acres of state trails
- Home to various wildlife species like white-tailed deer, black bears, gray wolves, and river otters
- A popular place for retirees to take up hobby farming
- Outstanding hunting terrain for hunting elk, moose, white-tailed deer, grouse, wild turkeys, pheasants, rabbit and more.
With stats like this, it’s no wonder people flock to Wisconsin every year for activities like canoeing, hiking, hunting, biking, cross-country skiing, bird watching, camping and more! Whether you’re looking to invest in commercial property, pick up hobby farming, forest land, tillable lots, or development land there are tons of options! In fact, LandHub.com has plenty to choose from. Here are a few of the current Wisconsin land listings to help get you started in your search.
- Lovely country home that makes the perfect oasis and hobby farm for retirees. There is a 3 BR/1 B home along with a 2.5 car garage and several outbuildings complete with an incredible view of the woods.
- 80 acres perfect for a hunter’s getaway! The property is majority wooded with some mature oak trees and an existing 8-acre food plot. Abundant deer, turkey, and defined path for ATV use.
- 8.15 acres private with higher elevation building site and 18′ deep lake. Private is its best asset after lake value itself!
- 134 acres remote with good road access. A gateway to your own lush woods. Zoned for forestry. Thriving wildlife. A short stroll down the road to the nearby lake.
After you take a look at the above listings you can find all of the Wisconsin listings here. If you’re looking to sell and market your own Wisconsin land, LandHub.com can help with that too! Check out the membership plans and sell your land easily and quickly on LandHub.com!
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by Caroline Kirby
When talking about places to move to, or even visit, Arkansas doesn’t typically rustle up much attention, but we think a lot of people are missing out on opportunities to invest in The Natural State.
Small but mighty, Arkansas is home to the only diamond mine in the U.S., tons of forestland, and the birthplace of major corporations like Walmart, Tyson Foods, and Dillard’s department store. Read on to find out why Arkansas land should be at the top of your list and then get a sneak peek at some of our top properties!
Why You Should Buy Land in Arkansas in 2019
Often forgotten as the “middle child of the South,” Arkansas typically gets overlooked thanks to boisterous Texas and busy Tennessee, the Natural State has its fair share of greatness to offer. Here are a few of the best reasons why you should give Arkansas second thought.
- The Weather: Do you love experiencing all four seasons? Arkansas gives you just that. You can have your white Christmas, summers on the lake, and enjoy a crisp fall hike every single year.
- Incredible Landscapes: The Natural State is beautiful! 600,000 acres of lakes and 9,700 miles of streams and rivers give way to picturesque landscapes no matter which part of the state you’re in, and don’t forget the beauty of the Arkansas Delta!
- High Quality of Life: Affordable housing and low costs of living make Arkansas a great place to start a family, retire or anything in between. Low crime rates across the state and a healthy job market make AR a great choice.
Is this “middle child” state of the south starting to sound too good to be true? Stick with us, here are some of the many land listings we have for Arkansas!
Land Listings You Should Be Looking at in Arkansas
- 70+ acres of timbered pine, amenities for hunters, and 4 acres of wildlife food plots in Southeast Arkansas.
- Land with 10-year old pine plantation and more than 120 acres of hardwood with a beautiful creek make this property a great investment with opportunity for recreational use.
- 178.35 Acre Hunting & Recreational land in Cherry Valley, AR.
- 182 acres in the Ozark Hills with a home, shop and living quarters, pasture, and the perfect place to hunt and/or farm.
- Jackson Point Hunting Club Equity Membership in Elaine, AR.
- 30 +/- acres Pine Timberland Tract in El Dorado, AR
Keep in mind that the above listings are just a starting point, you can browse all of our Arkansas listings here, or take your search to another state by checking out our convenient property browser here.
LandHub.com is an online resource for you to easily find and list land for sale!
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by Geoff Hurdle
Hurdle Land & Realty, Inc.
Buying land is a substantial investment, and many first-time buyers aren’t aware of all their financing choices or may feel intimidated by the process. There are a variety of options when it comes to financing property, but the traditional forms may not always be viable. Have you heard of owner financing? Are you aware of the benefits? Read on to learn why owner financing your land purchase may be your best option!
What is Owner Financing?
Owner financing (also called seller financing, seller terms or bond for title) is just what it sounds like; it’s a form of purchasing that allows the buyer to get financing from the seller rather than a bank. The property owner replaces the bank and payments will be sent directly to the owner, unless the owner chooses to sell your loan, in which case you will send payments to the investor(s) who purchased the loan.
Owner financing land is not uncommon, in fact, many sellers are willing to finance a buyer’s purchase. It’s also quite challenging to secure bank loans for vacant land deals, people looking to move off the grid, or even families interested in diversifying their portfolios. If you’re not seeking a well-established and costly chunk of land (like a ranching operation or serious acreage), then banks likely won’t give you the time of day.
Luckily, owner financing is on the table, and there are some great benefits for you!
The Benefits of Owner Financing Your Land Purchase
- Flexibility in Securing a Transaction: Traditionally, lenders have rigid requirements that won’t budge, but with owner financing, both parties can leave the deal happy. Different characteristics like down payments, payment amounts, length of the loan, interest rates, and more are open for discussion.
- Quick Closing Process: When you’re in direct communication with the seller for all parts of the purchase you’ll see that the closing process is much quicker, by cutting out all of the middlemen you and the seller can finalize the process on your terms.
- Save Money: When you seek lending through an institution there will be fees upon fees and hidden costs that could run into the thousands. When you opt for owner financing you won’t have high bank fees, loan arrangement fees or closing fees to worry about.
- Good for Buyers with Marginal Credit: Often times owner financing doesn’t always require a credit check, but some may. Although due to the more open nature of this financing option you may be able to work something out with the seller.
Although different in many ways from traditional loans, owner financing still has some structure. A promissory note will be created by the buyer and seller that details the repayment schedule, interest rate, and the consequences of defaulting on the loan.
This alternative financing method is often viewed as a win-win for all parties involved, and it can ultimately get you onto the land you purchased more quickly. Are you interested in searching for available owner financing properties? Check out the latest on LandHub.com here!
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