Many long-term endeavors involve the use of real property and most times present the option of purchasing. In some cases land and building will be needed and in other cases only land. Today we will discuss a few key areas concerning the purchase of land which should be given careful attention.
- Use of the land: Dominica, although a predominantly mountainous country with vast acres of forest, has areas which are flat and areas that are sloping. Many people are charmed by the idea of having flat land but a sloping lot may be quite convenient for your endeavor.
The local planning authority has separated land use into categories: residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, agricultural, tourism and urban development, wildlife, conservation/forestry and protected lands. The type of land that you purchase should coincide with your plan for the land. You would not want to buy a piece of land located in a residential area for the purpose of building a factory.
Check with the physical planning authority to find out if the desired area has any restrictions or if the land is fit for your purpose. It may be considered a hassle, but this may save you from troublesome situations in the future since you will ultimately need permission from the Physical Planning Division to build any structure or feature on the land.
- Budget your money wisely: When purchasing land there are government and other associated fees that the vendor as well as the purchaser have to pay. On a typical land (and building) transfer in Dominica the purchaser pays 4% stamp duty, 1% assurance fund and 2.5% judicial fee of the purchase price or value, whichever is greater. Often times a lawyer and a surveyor have to be engaged and paid a fee during this transaction. All these must be factored into your budget.
- Surveys are essential: A land survey plan provides information on the dimensions, access and boundaries of the land. A topographical survey will come in quite handy in providing more information about the gradient of the land allowing you to plan better.