Rural real estate is most commonly sold in single tracts. Occasionally, people wish to sell a portion from a larger tract. In this scenario, the transaction can become a little “sticky” for a number of reasons. These reasons could be as complex as county or city zoning, or as straightforward as a lack of access. So, what are some items to look into if you are going to be splitting land?
In most cases, when real estate is being divided, a survey will be required. The survey calculates and sets out very specific boundaries. Usually the Surveyor will place markers to clearly mark the corners of the real estate. The surveyor will then produce a formal “Survey” which is essentially a diagram of the real estate. Additionally, a “legal description” will be produced which is a written description of the real estate. It is important to work with your surveyor so that you know the costs and timelines for the completion of this work.
A common misconception is that if you own land you can do whatever you want on it. Unfortunately, it does not always work like that. No matter where you live, you will have to face rules and regulations regarding zoning. There will be rules and regulations that are similar from County to County, but there will also be County specific zoning requirements. No matter what you are doing, make sure that you research your local zoning requirements, otherwise, you may start a transaction you are not allowed to finish. Are you allowed to divide the land? If so, is any special documentation required? Is there a minimum tract size that the county requires? These questions and more can be answered by your County Zoning Administrator or your City Planning and Zoning department.
In Kansas, the owner of rural real estate may be required to fence and or maintain an existing fence. If the real estate that is being divided is fenced, the new owner could be responsible for a portion of the construction and maintenance of a new fence dividing the property. It is essential to investigate the costs of such construction and maintenance.
Access to the Property
How will you access the divided tract? Click here to read our last post that deals in part with access to rural real estate.
As you can see, there are a lot of issues to consider when splitting off tracts of land from a larger piece. However, it can be done. Most real estate professionals will have some idea of what some basic county requirements are for your area, or they can put you in touch with the people who are tasked with enforcing such requirements. If you are considering dividing real estate, give us a call. We are here to help you navigate your real estate transaction. It’s our job!