Now that you know the importance of being off the beaten path, its important to look at the surrounding properties and land uses. Its not hard to find ten to fifty acres in these mountains, but who are the neighbors?
First of all, it is best to own land that you can control with little interference from others. That is, unless there are compelling reasons, select a property that is not part of a master planned subdivision that has a Property Owners Association or covenants and restrictions. There are many such developments, and covenants serve a great purpose. After all, they help ensure that you are living alongside like minded individuals when it comes to keeping up the property. However, most POA covenants have restrictions against homesteading including the raising of livestock, gardens, impounding of waterways and cutting of timber (all things that become important with a retreat property). Some even restrict the use of solar panels. So unless the property is perfect in other ways, be careful about buying property encumbered by covenants and restrictions.
So what about adjoining land owners? Just because you’re out in the countryside on your own 50 acres doesn’t mean there aren’t bad characters out there too. While I’d say most people who live in such an environment have more of a “live and let live” approach, you still want to have a little distance from the neighbors. We at Retreat Realty will help you in that regard by pulling up aerial photos and property tax maps to evaluate the adjoining land uses with regard to zoning matters, municipal boundaries, pending development activity, etc. So keep your surroundings in mind as you search for that perfect property. That doesn’t mean a house on two acres should be struck off the list. If that house has all the other features needed for a good retreat, and its in a rural setting bordered by larger tracts of land, then it might be just fine. But let us help you with our expertise in making that decision.