Preparing a Home Site

If you have dreamed of building your own home, you’re not alone. Who wouldn’t love to design and build the perfect home to their own exact specifications? How great would it be to have the perfect floor plan, plenty of storage, great style, and everything else you can imagine that would make your new house the home you have always dreamed of owning?

While it is certainly do-able, there are many considerations that go into building a home, not the least of which is preparing the home site. You may not have had a chance to consider just how much goes into clearing and leveling land and installing utilities.

First, the clearing itself can be time consuming and expensive. You’ll need to hire a company with the proper equipment to do the heavy stuff. Once the larger trees and brush have been cleared, it all still has to be cleaned up. This can be especially difficult if the area does not allow burning of waste, because having it hauled off can be expensive. In some areas, you may also need a permit to burn waste. Once the land is cleared, it also has to be leveled. This may require additional fill, which can also be costly.

You also need to learn whether or not utilities run to the property you have selected. If water, sewer, phone, and power lines are located nearby, these issues will be much easier to deal with. Still, if there is no telephone pole or electric pole on your property, you will have to have these installed, along with an electric meter. This is not only expensive, but it can take quite a while if the phone or power company happens to be very busy. You may even be placed on a waiting list, which can mean extra weeks or even months.

If there is no water to the property, you will need to have a well dug, or have a water meter set and water lines put in that run from the meter to the home. If there is no sewer line nearby, you will have to have a septic tank installed. You will also need to have a “perk test” done before beginning work on the septic system. This test determines how large a septic tank is needed for the size of your home and your family, and if your land is able to support the tank and the drainage field. Requirements vary by location, so check with your local health department to find a certified inspector.

These are just a few of the issues you may not be aware of, so be sure to do your homework before deciding to build. If you are prepared and know what to expect, building a home really can be a dream come true.