Subdividing Basics: What You Need to Get Started

By LandCentral


Are you looking for a way to increase the value of your land? Then subdividing might be the answer. Whether you want to divide the property among family members or simply turn a profit while unloading a few acres, subdividing is a great way real estate investors increase their property value. While subdividing varies state to state, some steps are universal.

Check out LandCentral’s Subdividing Basics: What You Need to Get Started:

#1: Research

The first step to any real estate venture is always research. From researching the market to researching the property, knowing your stuff pays big in the game of real estate. When it comes to subdividing, there are a few things you need to know first:

  1. The subdivision process for your area – Check the website of your local planning, zoning and/or development office in your area to see how the subdivision process works. If they don’t have it readily available online, give them a call.
  2. Determine if your property is eligible for subdividing – Find out what zoning your property has and if needed, if it’s eligible for a re-zoning. Contact the municipal planning and building department in your area.
  3. Check for restrictions – Make sure there aren’t local ordinances, neighborhood covenants or deed restrictions that may halt your plans before they start. A quick title search should tell you everything you need to know about any restrictions you may be facing.
  4. Study the market – Is your area in need of small residential lots or larger parcels with custom built homes? By evaluating the current market conditions in your area you have a leg to stand on when it comes to re-zoning, building and eventually selling.

#2: Map it

Hire a surveying and/or engineering firm to survey the property you plan to subdivide and draw up a map of the land. This map will serve as a way to identify property boundaries, access rights-of-way, easements, etc. This survey will also tell you if your property is indeed eligible for subdivision.

Step 3: Apply

Yep. Just like everything else in life, there is an application process to move forward with subdividing a property. Once you’ve determined your land is eligible, simply turn in:

  • Application
  • Survey map
  • Certificate of title
  • Application fee

Step 4: Determine your role in the process

Once you’ve been approved to subdivide, this is where the real work comes in. What will your role be? Will you turn your 12-acre parcel into three 4 acre parcels, or will you create an entire subdivision named in your honor? Will you be working directly with the builders or will you being selling raw land and leave it to the new owners to build their dream home? Depending on your plan of attack, your subdividing road can be quick and easy or long and arduous.

Remember, the bigger the project in acreage and number of lots, the greater complexity. Either way you go about it, you’ll need to work with professionals to keep you on track.

Professionals you’ll need:

  • Title company – To verify the validity of the title and that the property doesn’t have any restrictions. A title company will also issue title insurance.
  • Real Estate Attorney – To cover your butt. These attorneys prepare and review legal documents to ensure you have all your ducks in a row. It makes for a smooth deal.
  • Land Developer – To help you determine what can and can’t be done with your land.
  • Real Estate Agent – To help you understand the location of your property and the market value and how it may appreciate or depreciate over time.
  • Municipal Planning and Building department – To help with zoning laws.
  • Planning, zoning and/or development office – To ensure your land qualifies for subdivision.
  • Surveyor or civil engineer – To draw up the map of your current property and your planned subdivision.

So now you know it all. Well, at least enough to take the next step. By understanding the Subdividing Basics, you’re on your way to increasing the total value of your land.

Still searching for the perfect vacant land to subdivide? LandCentral’s got you covered with these amazing parcels.








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