As the population grows and development increases, the basic law of supply and demand shows that over time, your land will simply increase in value. Of course some areas will see an increase more quickly than others, so if you’d like to take it into your own hands to help increase your value for selling right now, here are some ideas that might help.
1. Add Gates and Fencing, or Improve What You Already Have
This seems pretty simple and obvious when you read it, but I see it neglected pretty often on most properties. Typically we fall into the bad habit of “if it serves its purpose, it’s fine” even when it’s not pretty. Similar to the curb appeal of a home, gates and fencing – especially what can be seen from the road at the front of the property – make a huge first impression. In addition, the improvements themselves can be measured pretty easily as a quantifiable expense towards property improvements.
As you put in your gates or fencing in, or change up what you have, think about best use. Is it easy to open and close from the road? Can you get in and out with trailers or large equipment easily?
2. Utility Lines
Yes, they’re ugly. But they are a huge necessity if you want any improvements on your property. Unless you’re willing to try out solar technology or a really big generator, you’re going to need electrical lines for any buildings and especially a well for water.
In my experience, a buyer is more likely to budge a little on what they are looking for in a property if it has electrical lines or the easy availability of electricity.
3. Road Improvements
It’s a pretty easy project to hire out someone to come and do some grading work to improve your roads and driveways, and it makes a MASSIVE difference. Same as your front gates, the impression driving into your place on a road filled with potholes versus a nice smooth road just conveys quality. And quality demands higher price tags.
4. Improvements and Structures
Obviously if you’re planning to sell, you don’t want to suddenly spend the money to build a brand new barn or house, but it is worth noting that structures, barns, improvements, etc do increase the value of your property if they suit the intended use. If there is a barn on your property but maybe it’s not in great shape, at least clean it up a little and make it look nice.
5. Property Access
As property is subdivided over time, it’s pretty common to see easements granting access to places that are landlocked. If your place has limited or difficult access, make sure your neighbors know that your property is going to be for sale. Check to make sure the easement you have been using is legally recorded and/or properly documented. You don’t want to end up in a bind when you have a buyer and a roadblock comes up with regard to the legal right to access to your property. Figure out the details before you sell.
Just get one done. This is one of the most common items that can escalate into a disagreement quickly in a contract. When a landowner has owned a property for a long time, or inherited it from a family member, often a legal survey hasn’t been conducted on the property in many years.
Many landowners take the approach of “I’ll deal with it when I have a buyer”, but buyers typically prefer to know and see the EXACT property lines. Having the visual provided by the survey is extremely helpful. Plus, if you ask ahead of time most surveyors don’t mind putting out some stakes or markers to help show property lines for potential buyers.
If you’re considering subdividing the property when you sell, talk to your surveyor about your intentions when you have the initial survey done. Often times they will amend their original survey into smaller sections for a discounted fee.
If you’d like to learn more about what you can do to improve your property value before you sell, give us a call for a consultation. We’d be happy to help.