Recreational property is often mentioned by homeowners who want to enhance their real estate portfolio. You may be wondering what recreational land is, along with its advantages, affordability, and what you should look for. In this post, we will answer these questions and more.
What Is Recreational Land?
Recreational land is land that’s utilized or zoned for recreational activities, including wildlife protection, ATVing, fishing, camping, hiking, or hunting. Depending on local rules, recreational property may be developable but undeveloped land or land that cannot be developed.
The Benefits of Recreational Land
1. It is reasonably priced
Unlike other types of properties, recreational land can be purchased for a low price. It is also very inexpensive to maintain. Unless you intend to make large modifications to the land, maintenance expenditures should be kept to a minimum.
There will be no utility bills either; you just have to pay your monthly mortgage payment and real estate taxes along with it. Both of these costs are likely to be low, as recreational property is often worth less than land with improvements.
2. Leasing potential
While it is not an apartment structure, leasing out recreational land can yield monthly income. You can set up a campsite and start charging a nightly fee for camping (if permitted by municipal zoning). If your farm has good hunting stock, you may also rent it out to hunters. Another option is to construct a fishing pond and levy a daily fee on those who like fishing.
If your recreational property contains timber, the timber is likely to be valuable. Many people purchase recreational land from logging firms for this purpose. Timber businesses possess huge tracts and are frequently active buyers and sellers depending on market conditions.
You just need to ensure that you are purchasing both the wood on the land and the land itself. You should also create a solid management strategy so that you can earn from the timber when it is mature enough to harvest.
4. Therapeutic benefits
Recreational land can aid in the improvement of your mental health. This is because spending time in nature and with family has been demonstrated over and over to improve happiness and a sense of well-being. There is also the intangible reward of pride of ownership and the sense of accomplishment you will feel when you no longer have to pay hunting or camping fees.
5. You can use the land to sustain yourself
You may not be utilizing recreational land as your principal home, but it may be a great way to supplement the food you buy at home if the area has good hunting or fishing grounds. You may also be permitted to cultivate extra crops on your land to assist in improving your production, depending on local zoning rules. You might even start investing in unoccupied land if you are more enterprising. Instead of purchasing recreational land for personal enjoyment, you may sell it for a profit to help supplement your income.
6. Tax deductions
You are certainly aware of the tax advantages of a single-family house. However, you may be unaware that recreational land provides tax advantages as well. To begin with, some carrying costs linked to the property (property tax, interest) can be subtracted (for example, if you itemize your tax deductions on your tax return).
You can also donate a conservation easement, which will limit development on your land while providing you with a tax break of up to 50% of your income for the next 16 years (based on the easement’s value).
How Affordable Is Recreational Land?
If you don’t think you can afford to buy recreational land, it’s more attainable than you think. Most individuals fantasize about purchasing their own rural land as a weekend escape, a long-term investment to hand down to the next generation, a potential house site, or for extra income. Regrettably, land prices have risen over the years, leaving many families unsure if they can afford to own property. If this describes you, there are measures you can take that will help you attain your goal sooner than you think.
1. Purchase land as a group
Most friends and relatives have discovered that purchasing hunting or vacation land as a group may make payments more reasonable. To minimize misunderstandings and assumptions, define explicit ground rules and regulations in advance, and get competent legal guidance before signing on the dotted line, which might involve incorporating an LLC to better spell this out.
2. Get innovative with your down payment
If you don’t have a lot of money, think outside the box. In certain situations, rather than making a cash down payment, equity in a house or other owned property might be used as security. Consult with a loan professional to discuss your specific circumstances.
3. Rethink your yearly family holiday spending
An annual one-week vacation costs $3,580 for the average American household of four. That household may make monthly payments on a great piece of unoccupied property for a comparable annual cost. Loan prices and payment amounts vary depending on a number of factors, which you should discuss with your financial advisor for more exact and specific information, but you may be shocked when you work it out.
Not only can owning property provide a limitless number of getaways every year, but it may also represent a solid investment by growing capital in the land. Purchasing a vacation spot that can be handed down for generations is an excellent approach to creating memorable memories for present and future close relatives.
What to Look for in the Perfect Recreational Land
It’s critical to identify the property’s purpose (both future and current) early in the purchase journey. For instance, the perfect hunting site would require a suitable proportion of woodland acreage as well as an open region. Water on your land or nearby is also necessary for fishing or attracting animals. You should also check to see if there are any other hunting or zoning restrictions that could spoil your enjoyment. Speak with local residents and your agent to guarantee that nonresidential or commercial projects in that region are conceivable.
Perhaps you’d like to use your estate for personal enjoyment as well as a secondary source of revenue by opening an Airbnb, harvesting timber, running an outdoor retreat, or leasing the land. All of these can be desirable and attainable goals, but you’ll have to do your homework to guarantee the land matches those criteria.
For all forms of recreational real estate, consider water, septic, road access, the viability of constructing a second house or setting up basic shelters, zoning restrictions, pond maintenance or installation, driveway/culvert installation, any adjacent or on-site protected places such as wetlands, as well as the expense of putting in utilities if desired. You should also consider the price of land clearance, which might be costly based on what you want.
Location is important, though this depends on your objectives. Some people prefer to get as far away as possible from civilization, particularly if having sufficient space to hunt or going off the grid is a priority, whereas others prefer to be closer to medical facilities, grocery stores, and other essential services and conveniences.
Recreational land is an under appreciated asset or investment. You might not be able to establish a home on this type of land, but there are many additional personal and financial advantages to owning recreational land that you may lose out on if you dismiss it too quickly. If you are looking to sell your land or you have any questions about selling your property, please feel free to contact us today.