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Subdividing is the process of splitting up a single parcel of land into multiple parcels. While simple in concept, in practice subdividing land can be quite complex, as it involves many steps and compliance with a number of rules and regulations. Below you'll find an overview of the subdivision process in addition to basic information about the costs of subdividing land.
The Basics of Subdividing Land
Many people choose to subdivide land so that they can sell or develop the separate parcels for profit, although you may also be interested in subdivision for gifting land to family or other purposes. Whatever your reason for subdividing property, the following is a guide of how the process works.
- Make initial plans: After ensuring that there are no liens on the property to be subdivided, get in touch with your local planning and development office to obtain information about applicable restrictions and ordinances that you'll need to comply with.
- Devise a subdivision plan: With help from a developer, civil engineer, or other qualified professional, design a plan about how the land will be divided, including the number of subdivisions, and how roads and power will reach the properties.
- Hire a land surveyor: A land surveyor is needed to create what's known as a plat map for the property. The plat map will show the divided area, including details about the provision of utilities, sewage, a road network, etc.
- Submit documents for approval: The initial plat map, along with other necessary documents, are submitted for approval to the proper government agencies. Agency approval can take some time and may require meeting submitting additional materials depending on the land, your subdivision plans, and environmental regulations.
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Costs of Subdividing Property
It is nearly impossible to provide accurate estimate of the cost to subdivide land, as a huge range of variables come into play. For starters, the size of the property itself, your location, and how you intend to use the property all greatly influence subdividing costs. Other land subdivision costs may include:
- Land survey
- Legal fees
- Application fees
- Clearing the site
- Supplying utilities
- Inspection fees
- Permit costs
A surveyor alone might cost approximately $1,500 to $2,500, and when you factor in all of the other charges, the cost of merely subdividing a backyard could easily be $25,000 to $50,000 or more.
Have your surveyor speak with local officials to determine what is allowed and what they require. Once your project is approved you can then speak with individual contractors about clearing land, putting in roads and driveways, and installing sewer, electricity, water, etc. Then, finally, you'll have a solid idea of the cost of subdividing land.