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Construction Loans And Land Appraisals


Construction Loans And Land Appraisals
When it’s time to build your dream home using a One-Time Close construction loan, there is a lot to learn. For example, many first-time home buyers know the house they want to purchase with an FHA mortgage must pass an FHA appraisal.

Same for a VA home loan and conventional mortgages. But when a borrower wants to build a home from the ground up and needs to buy a parcel of land to do that, a different kind of appraisal is needed. 

While it is true that the home appraisal process is an essential aspect of the real estate journey, the other type (land appraisal) is just as crucial. This won’t necessarily apply to those who already own land they want to build on (see below.) 

Chances are good those borrowers already know how the land is zoned (check if you don’t) and what can be done with it. 

Those who do not know should consider having the land surveyed and appraised. You can also ask your builder to review the land for suitability.

What Are Land Appraisals?

The goals for a land appraisal are similar in some ways to a home appraisal. After all, the land appraisal establishes the fair market value for the land you want to buy. The appraisal may address the land’s accessibility, zoning, and whether it is comparable to other plots of land for sale in the same area.

There is another process called a land survey, which can be used to establish the boundaries of the land, whether it is surrounded by other privately owned land or not, and how difficult it might be to access.

Who Needs A Land Appraisal?

Borrowers purchasing existing construction don’t need a land appraisal. Those who already own their land may or may not need one. Much depends on your knowledge of the property and whether a survey or appraisal was done at purchase time.

Borrowers applying for an FHA One-Time Close mortgage who need to buy land with the construction loan may require a land survey and an appraisal. There may be unanswered questions about a plot of land, including whether it has access to local utilities to add plumbing and electrical hookups during construction.

Zoning Counts

How do you know whether the zoning on the plot of land permits you to build a residence? Before you commit, you need to know whether the land has been zoned for commercial or residential. If it’s not zoned for residential, is there an exception possible? Another consideration? Knowing whether a homeowner’s association might have jurisdiction over the land you want to buy.

Want More Information About One-Time Close Loans?

We have extensively researched the FHA (Federal Housing Administration) and the VA (Department of Veterans Affairs) One-Time Close Construction loan programs.

We have spoken directly to licensed lenders that originate these residential loan types in most states, and each company has supplied us with the guidelines for their products.

We can connect you with mortgage loan officers who work for lenders who know the product well and have consistently provided quality service.

If you are interested in being contacted by a licensed lender in your area, please send responses to the questions below.

All information is treated confidentially. 

OneTimeClose.com provides information and connects consumers to qualified One-Time Close lenders to raise awareness about this loan product and to help consumers receive higher-quality service.

We are not paid for endorsing or recommending the lenders or loan originators and do not otherwise benefit from doing so. Consumers should shop for mortgage services and compare their options before agreeing to proceed. 

Please note that investor guidelines for the FHA and VA One-Time Close Construction Program only allow for single-family dwellings (1 unit) – and NOT for multi-family units (no duplexes, triplexes or fourplexes).

The following homes/building styles are not allowed under these programs: Kit Homes, Barndominiums, Log Cabin Homes, Shipping Container Homes, Stilt Homes, Solar (only) or Wind Powered (only) Homes. 

Contact Us:  Send Us Your Request – Spam Safe 

Please send your email request to [email protected] which authorizes OneTimeClose.com to share your personal information with one mortgage lender licensed in your area to contact you. 

1.  Send your first and last name, e-mail address, and contact telephone number.

2.  Tell us the city and state of the proposed property.

3.  Tell us your and/or the Co-borrower’s credit profile: Excellent – (680+), Good - (640-679), Fair – (620-639), or Poor- (Below 620). 620 is the minimum qualifying credit score for this product. 

4.  Are you or your spouse (Co-borrower) eligible veterans?

If either of you is an eligible veteran, down payments as low as $0 may be available up to the maximum amount your debt-to-income ratio per VA will allow – there are no maximum loan amounts as per VA guidelines. 

Most VA lenders will go up to $1,500,000 and review higher loan amounts on a case-by-case basis. If not, the FHA down payment is 3.5% up to the maximum FHA lending limit for your county.
 
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