I began my search for land looking for acreage with seller financing, and ended up with a plot of land that is only .3 of and acre paid for in cash. Well a cashiers check anyway 🙂 The lesson, BE FLEXIBLE! When I started google searching and checking my local CL for land I had a list of needs and wants for my land. I never did put it into writing, but here is the gist of it.
My land needed to be within a reasonable driving distance of my jobs, but out in the country. I wanted to have some privacy and be able to have a compost pile and keep a few chickens without it bothering the neighbors. I found a bank owned plot in Ravenel, SC. I will be about a 30 minute drive from work. I wanted more land but the plot I ended up buying is surrounded by vacant plots so there is both privacy and the possibility to acquire surrounding plots in the future. I hope to eventually work from home, both performing massages, and selling the produce from my gardens, but for now I had to be realistic about transportation costs.
It needed to be usable. What I mean by that is it needed to be usable for the uses I have in mind. To me, being high and dry enough to build on and not having any zoned use restrictions or protected areas is all I needed. I am actually quite happy to have found such a wild plot of land. It does mean more work but it will be a labor of love and I’m sure I will get plenty of building materials and mulch from the process of clearing the building site and garden areas. How great is that!?! The first steps of sustainability 🙂
It also needed to be affordable. Be imaginative and flexible when figuring out how to afford a place of your own. Last year I made about 15k but have managed to keep my living expenses very low and saved up about 1.5k. I had thought that could be used as a down payment and I could get owner financing on the rest but when I found a plot that was bank owned with a price of only 2.5k I knew I had to figure out how to come up with the rest and buy it outright. With the plot being bank owned and priced to sell I knew they wouldn’t put up with a bullshitter for long so we had to get everything in order quickly and make our move. I put in an offer with no clue how we would come up with the rest of the money. We skimped on everything we could for a few weeks so we could get together the rest of the money for closing but it seemed like an impossible task. Luckily my husband is a full-time student right now and thanks to a student loan and a good couple of weeks at work we were able to come up with the money. I know we will have to pay back the student loan but it would have been nearly impossible for us to get the money quickly enough any other way. Many people use these loans to pay for their living expenses while going to school, but this money was spent on making sure our living expenses are minimal for the rest of our lives. This made it more than worth the small debt. The bottom line is, yes we went into debt, but it seems like a sound investment to me and it was a small enough sum that we can reasonably pay it back in a short time without it putting much of a strain on us.
We all have different circumstances and restraints but to thrive you have to figure out how to work with, around, and sometimes in spite of those restraints. Be flexible and learn to revise your plan if there is a difficulty. Be willing to have-not so that later you may have all your heart desires and appreciate it all the more, knowing the sacrifices made in obtaining it. If you cannot obtain whatever it is you desire, maybe you desire too much. Take a look at yourself and your life and decide for yourself what you want. From that point on you are responsible for every success and every learning experience (sounds so much nicer than “failure” doesn’t it?) in your life.