Real Estate

Tips for New Residential Construction

The batch titling process can take more than five years and is expensive. The cost of parcel maps for five or fewer lots is $100,000. Zone maps for more than five lots can cost more than $500,000. The number of lots and potential size are determined by biology, health department regulations, slope, and zoning and general plan. Included in the cost are engineering, processing and regulation fees and various reports and studies.

Reports and studies include approval cost conditions, stormwater treatment, anthropology and archaeology, soils, biology, noise and traffic. When a map is approved and registered, there are additional charges including but not limited to:
• Potential greenhouse gas studies
• Retention and drainage ponds
• On-site and off-site mitigation lands
• School payments
• Parks and recreation fees
• Physical secondary access
• Fire quotas
• Annual bail fees.

Policy comes into play when the required approvals are obtained from county boards, town councils, and planning commissions. The level of public opposition or support affects the completion of the hearings. They can be completed in as little as four months, or take years and cost more than a million dollars. Homeowners have three courses of action to consider.

1. Ownership and sale of the property ‘as is’: This option offers the lowest price, but costs less and requires the shortest time to dispose of the property. In rare circumstances, land is worth more when it is untitled.
2. Entering into a long-term agreement: The agreement is made with a home builder who incurs the costs of processing a tract map. This option is the most used. The process could take up to five years. Buyer is required to release non-refundable deposits periodically to Seller after approving Seller’s contingencies. Closing of the trust usually occurs after the final attempt or approval of the map.
3. Owner Incurs Royalty Costs – Much of the process is like option two. The difference is that the owner is in full control of the mapping process and bears all costs.

The ramifications of each option must be carefully weighed before a decision is made. The owners, who chose not to seek advice, made the decision to process a map only to discover later that the number of lots was not financially feasible. A competent engineer can determine the optimum number of batches that can be sourced and approved. Smart growth design principles call for buildings with a variety of materials, textures, colors and individuality; well defined open space; a relationship between building and street; mixed uses; and high-density development. Contractors, who specialize in residential subdivisions, can provide realistic cost estimates.

The process of titling residential property at higher densities is expensive, complex, and cumbersome. Many factors must be taken into account. The main concerns communities have about increased density are quality of life and increased costs.

There is a need for new affordable housing to reduce recent overpayments and overcrowding. There is also a need for high-density housing that supports economic recovery, accommodates new workers and their loved ones, and saves infrastructure costs. It’s all a balancing act. It is necessary to preserve open spaces and reduce the distance between new jobs and new homes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *