Land & Utilities
It’s OFFICIAL! We sold our tract home in Auburn and are the proud owners of 2.5 acres of bare land in Loomis, California.
That’s right, I said bare... as in, no house, no existing structure, and no utilities. Gulp.
If you’ve read the “About Us” section of our website, you know that our work changes... constantly. One thing that is consistent though, is our passion for building and creating things. Unable to find a house that fit our needs, and anxious to start a new chapter of our lives, we began our journey in designing and building our own home.
Step one, purchasing the land...
We had some pretty basic requirements we were shooting for...
1. We wanted some (but not too much) property
2. We wanted it to be centrally located
3. We wanted it to be private(ish)
Surprisingly, it was actually pretty difficult to find something that checked all those boxes...
Large, private lots had a big price tag to match, and $250K was our absolute max. It seems silly, but I found myself constantly forgetting that bare land meant all the utilities needed to be added. And it ain’t cheap. It’s hard to throw ballpark figures out for this stuff because there are so many variables, but listed below are our estimates.
To bring land up to a habitable state you need 3 main things... Water, Power, and a Sewage/Septic System.
Let's start with water...
There are 2 main ways to bring water to your land. Through a well, or by connecting to the city’s water system.
Our initial plan was to dig a well. Many of our neighbors have wells, so it seemed like a logical choice. After asking around, most had to dig somewhere around 300-800ft deep; However, after hearing a close neighbor’s story of digging 400ft, coming up dry, and literally flushing almost $9K down the pipes (pun intended) we decided to go a more predictable route which we’d hope, in the end, would eliminate more variables.
That said, we are paying to tie into city water to the tune of $26K.
Up next, power...
Power was pretty straight forward for us. After contacting PG&E we were quoted about $8K to get connected to the grid. If you’re using our quote as a ballpark for your own project, beware, as there are many factors that contributed to that cost (distance from power supply, underground service vs. overhead service ...etc.)
And last but certainly not least, septic...
Like water, there are a couple different options you have for fulfilling your families flushing needs. Sewer vs. Septic...
Because of our quasi rural location, going septic was the only option... So needless to say, it made for an easy decision. It’s not a plesant topic, but heres a very basic overview of how septic systems work... Wastewater is carried from the house into a large septic tank burried underground. The tank breaks down solid waste and sends the liquids through leach lines. The wastewater then percolates into the soil, naturally removing its harmful bacteria.
If you were building a house in the city, a septic system would definitely not be your first choice, or even a choice at all... More than likely you’d need to connect to city sewer systems, and your doo-doo would be carried off on a magic carpet ride to the nearest waste treatment plant. Delicious.
Our septic quote came in around $10K, but like power, different systems have many variables, and one could expect a range between $5K-$40K depending on the specifics of your job.
So there you have it folks, we are not landless, but indeed homeless for the time being. My parent’s are graciously letting us crash at their house until we get our tiny house built (which I am SO excited for) (not sarcastic)
And I will keep the updates coming!
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