texashuntingforum.com logo
Main Menu
Advertisement
Affiliates
Advertisement
Newest Members
TxFisherman03, runlevelsix, 416WbyMag, Miller2263, Juan Martinez
65818 Registered Users
Top Posters(All Time)
dogcatcher 94,430
bill oxner 57,699
stxranchman 55,260
SnakeWrangler 47,270
RKHarm24 44,585
rifleman 44,436
BMD 41,029
Big Orn 37,484
Facebook
Forum Statistics
Forums45
Topics438,352
Posts6,360,879
Members65,817
Most Online16,728
Mar 25th, 2012
Print Thread
Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) #7632432 10/14/19 07:35 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
S
shea.mcphail Offline OP
Bird Dog
OP Offline
Bird Dog
S
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
This is a continuation from my original thread (Totally Hypothetical):
https://texashuntingforum.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/7632428/1

Just to be clear, I’m not looking to make any land purchases anytime soon. I like how people have given me specific examples of land for sale. Please continue to drop any links to land because I can use them at least for educational purposes.

The reason I’m starting a second thread is because I really want more advice on the decision making you guys made when buying your hunting/recreational land. What were the big factors that played a role in deciding on what land you bought? Were there hidden factors that you would have missed if you didn’t closely inspect the land before purchasing? Rustler brought up really good points in my previous thread that made me more aware of what to look for in a land ad. In your experience, what are some commonly made mistakes when people buy land?

If there’s anything else that comes to mind, please feel free to post it!

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632462 10/14/19 08:01 PM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 1,275
D
Dalroo Online Content
Pro Tracker
Online Content
Pro Tracker
D
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 1,275
I had posted in the original thread, but think it is helpful for folks who have made rural land purchases in the past to share their experiences - hopefully assisting someone else from making bad decisions, or at least being better informed.

I am no expert, just things that come to mind from my purchase -

1) Verify the ag exemption! This can be a huge problem if the County chooses to play hardball. They usually do not audit usage, UNTIL land ownership changes. Then, the new owner has to apply for a new valuation. In my case, I had to verify five years (which I was able to do) of previous ag usage, and provide that info on the application. Again, not always the case, but if it can not be verified, the County can hold the NEW owner responsible for any variance in tax assessment (plus penalties), and it take 5 additional years to get back under the ag valuation. This could potentially costs thousands of dollars in unforeseen taxes. A few years after my purchase, I considered buying a smaller piece of property across/down the road, but chose not to move forward as it has NO fencing and no evidence of agriculture, meaning it would have been difficult to PROVE any ag usage. No go.

2) Access to utilities. We were fortunate that our place had power and metered water available, as we have learned that water wells will not produce in our area. There was a small charge for the meter and we had to trench/run water line, but the costs were minimal. Same with power - the previous owner had pole and meter brought onto property and had paid somewhere in the neighborhood of $15,000. This resulted in a bit higher per acre price, but marginal when considering the alternatives.

3) Speaking of water, tanks or running water will make impact the per acre fee, but try to learn if the property is prone to flooding. We have a section of our place that can be inaccessible during extended periods of rain. We learned this after the purchase.

4) Minerals - having any conveyed rights may impact the per acre price, but I would rather own them than not. We looked at a piece of property in Eastland County that looked great from the road, but once we got back to the rear sections of the property, there were several wells and storage tanks, and we were only going to receive about 5% of the mineral rights. That meant regular access to the land by the workers with no significant income, so we passed.

5) Good fences, at least on perimeter. We had 3 good sides, but I am slowly working my way up the 4th side. Clearing and fencing is a significant undertaking.

I am sure others will add much more, but these are a few that jump to my mind.


Dalroo
Deep in the Heart of Texas
Moslah Shrine Temple - 2B1 ASK1
Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632463 10/14/19 08:01 PM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
C
Cochise Online Content
Extreme Tracker
Online Content
Extreme Tracker
C
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
Obviously the biggest factor (from your first post) is location. There is plenty of land within a 2.5-3 hr radius from DFW that falls within a reasonable budget. I prefer East Texas. My Dad and I have bought and flipped a few small acreage places. The deals are there. However, you have to know exactly what you're looking for and be ready to jump on it quick. Nice places generally don't last long (seen numerous places in the Canton to Mineola area get listed in the morning and have a contract up that afternoon or the next morning).

1. Know what you're looking for and what you want and don't settle until you check off the boxes you want

2. Have your ducks in a row financially (get your financing secured as much as possible, have your down payment, etc) - this will help with #1 when the time arises and you need to move fast

3. Neighbors, neighbors, neighbors = if the neighboring properties look like junk yards run...will kill your resale if you need to dump it

4. When looking for land I prefer to get on the CAD websites and use the map to find properties I like from the aerial alone - I then try to find ones with out of state owners or multiple owners (undivided interests). Send them a letter. Worse thing that happens is you get a nasty phone call from some A hole stating they don't want to sell - however, you'd be surprised at the amount of land that sits unused because someone inherited something that lives out of state and they just don't want to go to the trouble to get a realtor, but are more than happy to sell; that is time consuming, but I've had decent luck with it over the last year or two. (You can buy the tax rolls from the county usually - but I'm cheap).

5. Learn how to use the flood plain maps. You'd be surprised how many properties that are currently listed (raw land) are in the flood plain and flood regularly - especially in E Texas. Use it to negotiate if its a property you want.

6. If it's priced cheap - and it's been on the market for a long time - there's usually a good reason.

7. Always ask if minerals are included in the sale. I personally will not buy a property with producing wells on it. Just an added headache dealing with that at your recreational property IMO especially on small acreage.

8. Make sure it has road frontage or at least DEEDED access. No easements. If you want to go when it's wet it better be an all weather road.

9. Always verify with the providers if utilities are available (water, electric)

10. Don't let emotions control your decisions when looking at land. It's just dirt, rocks, and trees. There will be something else come up.

11. Fences. It's a heck of a lot cheaper to fix a fence that's already there vs building one - especially on thick wooded properties.

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: Cochise] #7632474 10/14/19 08:15 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
S
shea.mcphail Offline OP
Bird Dog
OP Offline
Bird Dog
S
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
Originally Posted by Cochise
Obviously the biggest factor (from your first post) is location. There is plenty of land within a 2.5-3 hr radius from DFW that falls within a reasonable budget. I prefer East Texas. My Dad and I have bought and flipped a few small acreage places. The deals are there. However, you have to know exactly what you're looking for and be ready to jump on it quick. Nice places generally don't last long (seen numerous places in the Canton to Mineola area get listed in the morning and have a contract up that afternoon or the next morning).

1. Know what you're looking for and what you want and don't settle until you check off the boxes you want

2. Have your ducks in a row financially (get your financing secured as much as possible, have your down payment, etc) - this will help with #1 when the time arises and you need to move fast

3. Neighbors, neighbors, neighbors = if the neighboring properties look like junk yards run...will kill your resale if you need to dump it

4. When looking for land I prefer to get on the CAD websites and use the map to find properties I like from the aerial alone - I then try to find ones with out of state owners or multiple owners (undivided interests). Send them a letter. Worse thing that happens is you get a nasty phone call from some A hole stating they don't want to sell - however, you'd be surprised at the amount of land that sits unused because someone inherited something that lives out of state and they just don't want to go to the trouble to get a realtor, but are more than happy to sell; that is time consuming, but I've had decent luck with it over the last year or two. (You can buy the tax rolls from the county usually - but I'm cheap).

5. Learn how to use the flood plain maps. You'd be surprised how many properties that are currently listed (raw land) are in the flood plain and flood regularly - especially in E Texas. Use it to negotiate if its a property you want.

6. If it's priced cheap - and it's been on the market for a long time - there's usually a good reason.

7. Always ask if minerals are included in the sale. I personally will not buy a property with producing wells on it. Just an added headache dealing with that at your recreational property IMO especially on small acreage.

8. Make sure it has road frontage or at least DEEDED access. No easements. If you want to go when it's wet it better be an all weather road.

9. Always verify with the providers if utilities are available (water, electric)

10. Don't let emotions control your decisions when looking at land. It's just dirt, rocks, and trees. There will be something else come up.

11. Fences. It's a heck of a lot cheaper to fix a fence that's already there vs building one - especially on thick wooded properties.


Flood plain maps are something I would have never thought about.

Someone mentioned that mortgages on land is usually cheaper compared to a home mortgage. The con was that you usually need a higher percentage for the down payment with raw land. What percentage would you expect to save up for making a land purchase?

I’ve read somewhere about easement issues when buying land. I would assume this is mostly when a large tract of land is broken up to multiple owners?

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: Cochise] #7632475 10/14/19 08:16 PM
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 5,794
D
DQ Kid Online Content
THF Trophy Hunter
Online Content
THF Trophy Hunter
D
Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 5,794
Originally Posted by Cochise
Obviously the biggest factor (from your first post) is location. There is plenty of land within a 2.5-3 hr radius from DFW that falls within a reasonable budget. I prefer East Texas. My Dad and I have bought and flipped a few small acreage places. The deals are there. However, you have to know exactly what you're looking for and be ready to jump on it quick. Nice places generally don't last long (seen numerous places in the Canton to Mineola area get listed in the morning and have a contract up that afternoon or the next morning).

1. Know what you're looking for and what you want and don't settle until you check off the boxes you want

2. Have your ducks in a row financially (get your financing secured as much as possible, have your down payment, etc) - this will help with #1 when the time arises and you need to move fast

3. Neighbors, neighbors, neighbors = if the neighboring properties look like junk yards run...will kill your resale if you need to dump it

4. When looking for land I prefer to get on the CAD websites and use the map to find properties I like from the aerial alone - I then try to find ones with out of state owners or multiple owners (undivided interests). Send them a letter. Worse thing that happens is you get a nasty phone call from some A hole stating they don't want to sell - however, you'd be surprised at the amount of land that sits unused because someone inherited something that lives out of state and they just don't want to go to the trouble to get a realtor, but are more than happy to sell; that is time consuming, but I've had decent luck with it over the last year or two. (You can buy the tax rolls from the county usually - but I'm cheap).

5. Learn how to use the flood plain maps. You'd be surprised how many properties that are currently listed (raw land) are in the flood plain and flood regularly - especially in E Texas. Use it to negotiate if its a property you want.

6. If it's priced cheap - and it's been on the market for a long time - there's usually a good reason.

7. Always ask if minerals are included in the sale. I personally will not buy a property with producing wells on it. Just an added headache dealing with that at your recreational property IMO especially on small acreage.

8. Make sure it has road frontage or at least DEEDED access. No easements. If you want to go when it's wet it better be an all weather road.

9. Always verify with the providers if utilities are available (water, electric)

10. Don't let emotions control your decisions when looking at land. It's just dirt, rocks, and trees. There will be something else come up.

11. Fences. It's a heck of a lot cheaper to fix a fence that's already there vs building one - especially on thick wooded properties.

Agree with all of this and lastly, look for animal signs. Tracks, trails, scat, crossings under fencing, rubs, etc. When I first saw my place it had recently rained a lot so tracks were very abundant and easy to see.

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632477 10/14/19 08:19 PM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
C
Cochise Online Content
Extreme Tracker
Online Content
Extreme Tracker
C
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
Originally Posted by shea.mcphail
Originally Posted by Cochise
Obviously the biggest factor (from your first post) is location. There is plenty of land within a 2.5-3 hr radius from DFW that falls within a reasonable budget. I prefer East Texas. My Dad and I have bought and flipped a few small acreage places. The deals are there. However, you have to know exactly what you're looking for and be ready to jump on it quick. Nice places generally don't last long (seen numerous places in the Canton to Mineola area get listed in the morning and have a contract up that afternoon or the next morning).

1. Know what you're looking for and what you want and don't settle until you check off the boxes you want

2. Have your ducks in a row financially (get your financing secured as much as possible, have your down payment, etc) - this will help with #1 when the time arises and you need to move fast

3. Neighbors, neighbors, neighbors = if the neighboring properties look like junk yards run...will kill your resale if you need to dump it

4. When looking for land I prefer to get on the CAD websites and use the map to find properties I like from the aerial alone - I then try to find ones with out of state owners or multiple owners (undivided interests). Send them a letter. Worse thing that happens is you get a nasty phone call from some A hole stating they don't want to sell - however, you'd be surprised at the amount of land that sits unused because someone inherited something that lives out of state and they just don't want to go to the trouble to get a realtor, but are more than happy to sell; that is time consuming, but I've had decent luck with it over the last year or two. (You can buy the tax rolls from the county usually - but I'm cheap).

5. Learn how to use the flood plain maps. You'd be surprised how many properties that are currently listed (raw land) are in the flood plain and flood regularly - especially in E Texas. Use it to negotiate if its a property you want.

6. If it's priced cheap - and it's been on the market for a long time - there's usually a good reason.

7. Always ask if minerals are included in the sale. I personally will not buy a property with producing wells on it. Just an added headache dealing with that at your recreational property IMO especially on small acreage.

8. Make sure it has road frontage or at least DEEDED access. No easements. If you want to go when it's wet it better be an all weather road.

9. Always verify with the providers if utilities are available (water, electric)

10. Don't let emotions control your decisions when looking at land. It's just dirt, rocks, and trees. There will be something else come up.

11. Fences. It's a heck of a lot cheaper to fix a fence that's already there vs building one - especially on thick wooded properties.


Flood plain maps are something I would have never thought about.

Someone mentioned that mortgages on land is usually cheaper compared to a home mortgage. The con was that you usually need a higher percentage for the down payment with raw land. What percentage would you expect to save up for making a land purchase?

I’ve read somewhere about easement issues when buying land. I would assume this is mostly when a large tract of land is broken up to multiple owners?


I haven't financed raw land - but I would assume 15-20% hinging on appraisal.

Not necessarily on the easement. More so landlocked properties than undivided interests. If you can't buy 100% of the undivided interests owners interests - and unless you're real familiar with partition law - avoid undivided interests.

Last edited by Cochise; 10/14/19 08:21 PM.
Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: Dalroo] #7632479 10/14/19 08:19 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
S
shea.mcphail Offline OP
Bird Dog
OP Offline
Bird Dog
S
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
Originally Posted by Dalroo
I had posted in the original thread, but think it is helpful for folks who have made rural land purchases in the past to share their experiences - hopefully assisting someone else from making bad decisions, or at least being better informed.

I am no expert, just things that come to mind from my purchase -

1) Verify the ag exemption! This can be a huge problem if the County chooses to play hardball. They usually do not audit usage, UNTIL land ownership changes. Then, the new owner has to apply for a new valuation. In my case, I had to verify five years (which I was able to do) of previous ag usage, and provide that info on the application. Again, not always the case, but if it can not be verified, the County can hold the NEW owner responsible for any variance in tax assessment (plus penalties), and it take 5 additional years to get back under the ag valuation. This could potentially costs thousands of dollars in unforeseen taxes. A few years after my purchase, I considered buying a smaller piece of property across/down the road, but chose not to move forward as it has NO fencing and no evidence of agriculture, meaning it would have been difficult to PROVE any ag usage. No go.


So the burden of proof for an ag exemption falls on the person making the purchase? That’s just crazy to me.

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632482 10/14/19 08:22 PM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
C
Cochise Online Content
Extreme Tracker
Online Content
Extreme Tracker
C
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,646
Originally Posted by shea.mcphail
Originally Posted by Dalroo
I had posted in the original thread, but think it is helpful for folks who have made rural land purchases in the past to share their experiences - hopefully assisting someone else from making bad decisions, or at least being better informed.

I am no expert, just things that come to mind from my purchase -

1) Verify the ag exemption! This can be a huge problem if the County chooses to play hardball. They usually do not audit usage, UNTIL land ownership changes. Then, the new owner has to apply for a new valuation. In my case, I had to verify five years (which I was able to do) of previous ag usage, and provide that info on the application. Again, not always the case, but if it can not be verified, the County can hold the NEW owner responsible for any variance in tax assessment (plus penalties), and it take 5 additional years to get back under the ag valuation. This could potentially costs thousands of dollars in unforeseen taxes. A few years after my purchase, I considered buying a smaller piece of property across/down the road, but chose not to move forward as it has NO fencing and no evidence of agriculture, meaning it would have been difficult to PROVE any ag usage. No go.


So the burden of proof for an ag exemption falls on the person making the purchase? That’s just crazy to me.


It is extremely subjective county to county. Some are rather lax and easy to deal with, others are sticklers to the letter of the law.

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: Cochise] #7632487 10/14/19 08:30 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
S
shea.mcphail Offline OP
Bird Dog
OP Offline
Bird Dog
S
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 413
What would be the best way to find out if a county will be more strict with laws? I would assume a realtor would be the best bet?

Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632488 10/14/19 08:32 PM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 1,275
D
Dalroo Online Content
Pro Tracker
Online Content
Pro Tracker
D
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 1,275
Originally Posted by shea.mcphail
So the burden of proof for an ag exemption falls on the person making the purchase? That’s just crazy to me.


I agree, it made no sense to me either and I questioned, and was informed this is the case, but as Coshise said, every County is different in how much they want to play hardball, so it may not ever come up in some places. It would stink to buy a $200k property with taxes of a couple of thousand dollars a year, and then find you have to pay the difference for the past 5 years based on ag value v. non-ag value. And then have to pay the increased taxes for 5 years while you try and establish ag usage. Deal breaker!!!!


Dalroo
Deep in the Heart of Texas
Moslah Shrine Temple - 2B1 ASK1
Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7632745 10/15/19 01:10 AM
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 94,430
dogcatcher Online Content
THF Celebrity
Online Content
THF Celebrity
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 94,430
I would never buy property without an ag exemption. I do not trust any county or the state legislature enough to always keep the wildlife exemption. When tough times roll in, the wildlife exemption is easier to get rid of, most will be held by out of county owners with no votes.


Combat Infantryman, the ultimate hunter where the prey shoots back.
_____________"Illegitimus non carborundum est"_______________



Re: Totally Hypothetical (Part 2) [Re: shea.mcphail] #7633031 10/15/19 01:34 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 4,347
M
Mr. T. Online Content
Extreme Tracker
Online Content
Extreme Tracker
M
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 4,347
Originally Posted by shea.mcphail
What would be the best way to find out if a county will be more strict with laws? I would assume a realtor would be the best bet?

I buy and flip small properties, 50-100 acres. I'm going to insult someone here, but a realtor would be the last person I would trust on giving me this information.
I would never buy land that was not already AG exempt....never.
And I would never buy land that has an easement if you are buying to flip. When selling a paved frontage roads will bring a lot more money that property off a dirt county road.


Ski cabin rental in Pagosa Springs.
www.pagosaspringscabin.com
Previous Thread
Index
Next Thread

© 2004-2019 OUTDOOR SITES NETWORK all rights reserved USA and Worldwide
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.3