In the classic Gone With The Wind, Scarlett O’Hara’s father, Gerald, famously said, that “land is the only thing in the world worth workin’ for, worth fightin’ for, worth dyin’ for, because it’s the only thing that lasts.”
When you’re ready to build, it’s also the thing that needs a serious amount of attention. Since it can singlehandedly shift your building plans, land must be investigated, questioned, eyed from every angle. Not that it’s trying to trick you, but, unless you know how that land fits into your overall plan, it very well might.
So when you stand on that rolling hill or rocky cliff or soft valley and survey the future site of your building, make sure you have all the answers you’ll require to keep your project running smoothly. If you want help in your investigation, we suggest answering these questions:
- Is there a clear title to the site?
- Has zoning been approved?
- Have surveys been taken?
- Have watershed and drainage requirements been checked?
- What building code restrictions govern the site?
- Are there easements on the site?
- Will they interfere with the use of the property?
- What are the insurance requirements of the site?
- Is the site big enough for future expansion and parking?
- Will there be easy access to the building after the area develops?
- What are the setback requirements of the lot?
- Will they inhibit future expansion?
- What site preparation work is needed?
- Soil testing?
- Fill/dirt removal?
- Is a retaining wall needed?
- Is fencing or screening needed?
- What traffic facilities are needed?
- Pedestrian walkways?
- Traffic signs/signals?
- Parking/Handicapped parking?
- Separate customer parking?
- Will paving be asphalt or concrete?
- What is the street load capacity?
- Are these part of the general contract?
- Parking lot paving?
- Painting parking stripes?
- Traffic directional signs?
- Curbs and gutters?
- What other on-site development is needed?
- Will this be included in the construction contract?
- Is city planner/site plan review required?
Although Scarlett valued land, she wasn’t great with facing problems before they blew up in her southern belle face. Hopefully, this list will help guide you to a better ending than that movie.
Also, if you missed any of our other question lists in this series, be sure to check out the questions you should be asking when you are starting a project and when you are budgeting for that project. And, stay tuned for more helpful question blogs to come as we help you take your project from concept to reality.
If you have a question not listed here, please post it below! Comments and feedback are always welcome.