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Buying Unimproved Land

by | Oct 10, 2023 | TIER, TIER Plus

You’ve toiled for years, sold the family home, and are on the hunt for land to build that dream home. The risks to buying unimproved land are seldom appreciated by the uninitiated. Power, water, drainage, septic, and land use rights and restrictions all come into play. What can Timely Contract do to help you avoid common errors that could turn that dream into a nightmare?


TIER stands for Title Insurance Exceptions Review®. TIER delivers a legal opinion of public documents located at the County Recorder’s Office. These documents represent risks to the use and enjoyment of the land that are not covered by title insurance. Critically, you usually do not see TIER risks when visiting the property. TIER risks include, but are not limited to, Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CC&Rs), Deeds, Easements, Judgments, Plats, Record of Surveys, Road Agreements, Septic Agreements, Tax Liens, and Water Agreements.

TIER Plus®

TIER Plus delivers a custom-designed legal opinion of public documents located outside of the County Recorder’s Office. These documents represent risks to the use and enjoyment of the land that are generally invisible to the naked eye. TIER Plus can address risks of federal, State, Tribal, local laws, rules, and regulations including, but not limited to, Airspace rights, Building permits, Chain of title, Conservation restrictions, Endangered species, Environmental phase testing results, Flood zones, Grazing permits, Pre-existing code violations, Septic permits, Timber tax exemptions, Tribal laws or regulations, UCC fixture encumbrances, Water rights, Wetlands, and Zoning.

Law Assumes Full Knowledge and Understanding of TIER® and TIER Plus® Risks

Depending upon the State in which your unimproved land is located, the law assumes you have full knowledge and understanding of the legal effect the public document record has on the use and enjoyment of the property. In other words, there is typically little legal recourse once you have purchased the land for circumstances and conditions documented in the public record.

Use Timely Contract to avoid common problems of the real estate transaction … and to sleep better at night!

This post is not legal advice. Legal advice is based on specific facts. This information is necessarily general in nature.

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