When you select that piece of land you want to call home, always remember that no one piece of property is the same. Yes, every piece of property is different; and it is also differentiated by price, which is determined by location and market demand. But what if we were to forget the economics of the property and start to look at the advantages and disadvantages of the land itself? And then ask yourself if that piece of land is suited for you and the lifestyle you want to make for yourself?
FACING DIRECTION IS IMPORTANT
First things first. Let’s get the bearings of your property that is well suited for you. The first thing we need to determine is the direction of the land. Based on the how the property is structured, the obvious direction would be to face the main road. The next step is to identify roughly the entry for the carport and the main entrance to the house. See if there are obstacles that may affect the view from the door and if so, look at alternative favourable directions.
Remember that it is not necessary to always locate the main door in the same façade that faces the main road. We can always work around the site and locate the main entry in a different elevation and direction, as long as the entrance promenade to the main door makes practical sense.
SLOPING VS FLAT LAND
The next element of the property to think about is to choose between a flat and sloped site. While both types of sites have their benefits, they also come with their own set of cons. For example, a flat site may not offer the panoramic view you might otherwise find in a sloped site, but it does allow a cheaper cost of construction. Construction would be simplified, which would in turn allow one to allocate the funds to work harder on the interiors and landscape.
For sloped sites, you get the benefit of working with levels, so you don’t have to limit yourself to building upwards but can work on a 3-dimensional level by allocating spaces under the ground level of the home. By creating different levels throughout the home, you will be amazed at the kind of spaces you can achieve while benefitting from the external view.
TYPES OF VIEWS
Everyone in the family unit will have a different type of expectation in what they want. Some may like a mountainous view, while others yearn for a view of the ocean or a lake. Truth be told, there needs to be compromise in the type of view you want to achieve for the home. Everyone feels comfortable in a specific setting that evokes a happy memory or emotion, so how do we find a compromise?
Look for a site that can encompass as much of what you desire as a family unit. For example, if vegetation and mountains are what you are thinking of, look at properties set on a hill close to a green lung. If the ocean or water is what you are looking for, find a site that is close to a lake or pond, which is easily found in golf resort type developments. So rather than living in the actual mountain or beachfront, think of what evokes that happiness when you think of such areas, and find something that replicates that element in a more urban setting.
Constructability is probably the one topic we never think about when choosing a property, but it should be the one factor we need to consider, as it affects the budget and feasibility of the land. For example, we need to know what services are around the area and whether we need to pull new services in such as water and electricity. How do we discharge water out of the site and are there any road reserves to tap off?
Other factors to look at would be the soil condition as to whether it is hard soil or filled earth. While you can build on any surface usually, the type of soil condition would have a direct effect on how you want to create the foundation structure, which has a direct impact on the wallet.
To take this even further, you should also look at your neighbours and what they are like. There is nothing worse than having to live with a nasty neighbour. Look at how the surrounding houses are kept, and possibly make the rounds to see what the neighbourhood is like.
TAKING INTO ACCOUNT THE CLIMATE
This is probably another factor we never think about, but is something that affects the first item we look out for, which is the Direction. Depending on whether you are a West or East group person would narrow down the search for a property. But the climate would also play a vital role in how we design the home, such as the direction of the rising and setting sun. Depending on where you are in the world, these directions tend to be the hottest rooms of the home, so it is not so ideal to locate the bedrooms there, unless you are the type that loves to wake up to nice sunshine.
But avoid the setting sun, as the heat buildup over the day can make the room in the corner somewhat unbearable. Similarly, wind patterns can help to naturally cool down the house, thereby saving cooling costs, so look at where the prevailing winds are blowing, and try to locate the main areas of the homes in such directions so as to create a naturally well-ventilated home.
So remember: When you go about buying a new piece of land, try to not only look at location and price. Look also at the property for what it is and whether it is suited for you. There is no point in buying a piece of land based just on price, unless it’s for an investment. But if you are buying to live in it, make sure you really love the land and think of what makes you fall in love with it.