Have you considered buying a lot in Scottsdale for a custom home? Well, you’ve come to the right place!
This is a short primer on buying land in Scottsdale, AZ and some considerations when building a custom home. Let’s dig in.
Money & Time…
First off, we need to get a few things out of the way. You will need a significant amount of capital or creative financing to build a custom home; and, just as important, you will need lots of free time. While you can obtain financing for a lot and build, lenders will want to see that you have “skin in the game” and at the very least you will need 30% down to buy land–perhaps more. There are a few niche Arizona lenders that provide financing to build a home, but generally speaking, they will want you to own the land free and clear or have significant equity in the deal.
Even though you’d likely hire a home builder to handle everything, building a custom home requires a great deal of input (read this as time) when it comes to all the details of the home–from choosing a design/floor-plan to finishes, appliances, landscaping, security, and more–there are literally hundreds of items to cover. Visit my Scottsdale Luxury Real Estate article to view lists of the top architects, builders and interior designers in Scottsdale.
Steps to building a custom home
Step one is to determine if you have the budget and time, not to mention the mental toughness 🙂 to handle a new home build. Step two is to find a builder who can bring your project to life. The builder you choose may already have a nice floor-plan/design that works for you, but you may have to hire an architect to draw plans if you want something custom. Once you’ve determined all costs and have your team in place, it’s time to find the right Scottsdale lot–this is step three.
Finding a great Scottsdale lot
When it’s time to find a lot, there are a few options–one, search for FSBO lot owners; two, set-up an automated MLS search to capture existing and new-to-market lots for sale in Scottsdale. A third option might be to contact the builder you want to work with and see if they currently own any lots upon which you could build. Over the years I have helped many clients buy lots in Scottsdale and all of the parcels were found via the multiple listing.
Buying a piece of land sounds simple enough, but let’s take a closer look at things you would want to consider:
- Is the lot well located? Is it near power lines, a busy road, the site of future construction or commercial centers?
- Is the lot level and if it’s not, how expensive will the lot prep be? A steep and/or rocky lot can be quite expensive to prep.
- Is there an adequate building envelope? Many lots have natural area open space requirements–also referred to as NAOS–these areas may greatly limit how large a home you can build.
- Based upon the size/shape of the lot and the ingress/egress, can you build the home you want? This is where your builder and/or architect come into play.
- Are there natural impediments to building your home? An example would be a natural wash or arroyo that would have to be moved or built around.
- If there is an HOA, can you build the style/size of home you want? Often times there is an architectural committee that must approve your plans before construction can begin.
- Are all utilities available at the curb or access point of the lot? This is a huge consideration because pulling in city utilities can be very costly.
- If you are building in 85262 or any area where there is no sewer or city water, you must take into account the waste water system you will incorporate (very expensive to build a new system) and whether or not there is a well. Sometimes wells are shared among a group of home owners–this is common in the Rio Verde area of Scottsdale.
As you can see, buying a lot is not quite as simple as it sounds–especially if your goal is to build your dream home upon it. If you need help finding a lot, hiring a builder and/or architect, please reach out any time–I would be honored to help make your vision a reality.