You hear it all the time when buying a house: location, location, location. But that doesn’t just apply to the Texas city or suburb you’re searching in. Picking a great lot within your new home community is as important as choosing the right builder and floor plan.
Unlike certain design elements, you can’t change where your house is built. It determines everything from how the seasons and weather elements impact your space to how much you can resell your home for when the time comes.
If you thought all lots within new build communities were the same, think again. Use this guide to help you understand the ins and outs of buying a lot in a subdivision/community so you can find the one that fits your needs.
Questions to Ask When Buying a Lot in a Subdivision
Answering the following questions will help guide your search:
- What is your timeframe? Do you want to start building ASAP or can you wait for the perfect lot to be available?
- How big of a front and back yard do you need? Is space for kids or a large dog important? Do you need extra room for a garden or patio?
- How much noise are you willing to tolerate? Are you looking for the quietest section of the neighborhood because you are a light sleeper or have a new baby? Or do you prefer to be in the middle of all the action?
- What level of privacy do you need? Would having neighbors behind you be comforting or claustrophobic?
- Are you willing to spend extra to get what you want? Is your budget completely fixed or are you ok with paying a lot premium to get the views and privacy you want?
What to Look for When Buying a Lot
Knowing how to pick a lot in a new development is part skill, part keen observation. Once you know what you’re looking for, potential deal breakers become obvious – and so do the lots that tick all your boxes.
- Development plans. To see how the neighborhood is going to evolve, check the different phases and builders in your preferred community.
- Size. Not all floor plans will work for all lots. Ask your builder to help you narrow down lots based on your desired layout. Many Hillwood Communities’ websites have online home search options that allow you to pick your preferred home design, then show you the lots it can be built on within the community.
- Topography and slope. The flatter your lot, the more usable yard space you’ll have. Just make sure there’s a good drainage plan in place that won’t lead to erosion down the line.
- Utilities and power lines. Power lines can significantly impact your resale value. So can unsightly utility boxes and sewage components like pumps. Have your builder's representative point them out as you walk the neighborhood.
- Lot orientation. Bring a compass if you need to check which direction your home will face. It makes a difference for the plants in your garden, as well as your utility bill. Worried about the Texas sun making your patio unusable at certain times of the year? Steer clear of a south or west-facing backyard.
- Ponds, lakes, and retaining walls. Be aware that some of the more desirable plots, like those with a water feature or great view, could come with lot premiums. Ask in advance about any price increases associated with the area you’re interested in, and the plan to fight erosion over time.
- Traffic. If you have dreams about your kiddos riding bikes down your street or are a light sleeper, you might be drawn to a cul-de-sac, which generally has less traffic. They can have limited parking and front yard options though.
- Proximity to neighbors. Some lots will be further from neighbors than others, so make sure you know which houses will eventually get built where, and how that might impact your views long-term.
- Proximity to amenities. Hillwood Communities are chock full of amenities like swimming pools, fitness centers, event spaces, outdoor kitchens, catch-and-release fishing ponds, and much more. You may want to be as close as possible to these amenities, or you may prefer to be farther away from them and the extra traffic associated with them.
Plot Picking FAQs:
Are corner lots better?
Corner lots sometimes have larger yard spaces, but you’ll contend with more traffic, so think about which is more desirable for you.
What is considered a premium lot?
The builder defines what is considered “premium,” but usually designates them as lots with exceptional views or larger areas.
Where can I put my house on a lot?
Your home’s orientation will likely depend on which floor plan you choose. In general, builder’s take into account the direction of the sun and typically plan to build the home to maximize light and cross breeze.
Find the Perfect Lot in a Hillwood New Home Community
If you’re ready to build a new home, there’s no time like the present! Interest rates are at all-time lows and the market is hot, all you have to do to kick off the process is choose one of our new home communities and get started. Need help choosing the right lot for your family? Contact us to help you narrow down your choices!