Tips for Buying and Building a Rural Home
If you're in the market for a new home and you love a little bit of extra space and privacy, then a "Rural" or "Country Living" could be just right for you. However there can be extra costs associated with living rural that you should budget for.
Rural and regional areas offers a quality of life that many people find hard to resist. But it is important to understand life in a rural zone before buying a property and living on it. Remember, although it may look peaceful, rural living can be busy, noisy and odorous at certain times and in certain areas.
1. Distance from Town
The distance from work or shops can vary and the time spent travelling, wear and tear on your car and fuel can all add up to be a considerable addition to the budget.
2. Additional Items Required
Unlike a home built in the suburbs, building on a rural lot can incure additional charges the following are required:
- Bore for water supply.
- Tanks to store water and Pressure Pumps to supply water to the home.
- Septic Tanks for Waste Water.
- Power Pole from the Mains Power to the Lot.
- Addition Power Cabling and Telstra from the front of the Lot to the position of the home.
- Addition Water Mains if on town water from the front of the Lot to the position of the home.
3. Fire Control
Fire control is also your responsibility—understand that you will have to take actions including reducing the amount of fire fuel around your home, and possibly establishing fire breaks around your boundary. Advice on managing fire risks is available from the NT Fire Authority.
4. Boundary Fences
Landowners also have a responsibility to keep their boundary fences well-maintained. The cost of maintaining a shared fence is typically shared between neighbours, but where the fence borders on government-owned land (such as Crown land), the private landholder may be liable for the full costs of maintaining the fence. Talk to your local council to find out more.
5. Landscape Views
Many people move to rural areas for the picturesque landscape. But remember, the land you look out on may be owned by someone else who has rights to dramatically alter how it is used and how it looks.
Be prepared for your landscape views to change if you live next to a commercial farming enterprise and understand the alternative land uses that could be developed on neighbouring land. Commercial farming operations can change dramatically as production practices change.
6. How accessible is the property in the Wet Season?
If you're looking at a block in a low flood area, make sure that the property is on a road that will be safe to drive on and with good access, or prepare yourself for dangerous driving conditions. You may need to budget for heavy earthworks to build a road to access the home on the lot.