Do you have questions about how to sell your vacant land?

Great! Here are answers to common questions.

If you have additional questions that aren’t listed here, you can send us a message using this form, or give us a call:(219) 209-2021


Q:  Do you pay fair prices for land?
A:  Yes. The prices we pay are fair and a win-win for both parties. We do not pay retail, however, that cost can be made up when you factor in the fact that we charge ZERO in commissions, plus we pick up all associated administrative and closing costs. In addition, we close very quickly because we are paying in cash. This saves you money by shortening the period of time in which you are responsible for taxes, assessments, and maintenance of the property.  Remember, the land market is very slow, selling the traditional way, and using a realtor to find a buyer can take months if not longer. Costs incurred over this time can add up fast. Before binding yourself to a realtor, get our offer and run the numbers for yourself. There is zero obligation.


Q:  How do you determine how much to offer for a parcel of land?
A:  Our process is very clear and straight forward. We look at what other properties are selling for, and what the market suggests they will do in the future. We take out what was paid in commission and fees on these comparable properties to get a price on which we base our offer. In addition we calculate the market there is for land of this type and the amount of marketing resources we’ll need to put into the transaction to re-sell your property to an end buyer. Finally is our profit. We earn a fair profit for this service and want you to walk away knowing that you reached your goals.  When you get an offer from Emeritus Land Investments LLC, we will fully explain how we have come up with it.


Q:  Are there ANY hidden costs or fees?
A: Never. Not a dime. What we offer you is what you will take home.


Q:  What makes you different from an agent?
A: We are direct buyers. We buy land that is not being used in an effort to help it see it’s greatest potential. Let’s say a lot is located in suburbia. We will hopefully resell the lot to someone who is just waiting to build their dream house on it. Our goal is to help property owners feel elated by their real estate decisions. If you do have a piece of land that is doing nothing for you, maybe we can help you with the cash to find something better suited for YOUR needs.

Real estate agents list properties (often at inflated prices) in hopes that someone will buy them, and they will get their hefty commission. You will have to sign a contract, binding you to them for a certain amount of time. You will own them their commission no matter how the property is sold, even if you find the buyer yourself.


Q:  If I Get An Offer, Is There an Obligation?
A: There is never any obligation or hassle. Once you tell us a little about your property we will then study the market and comparable properties. Within 48 house we will have an offer for you. It is completely up to you if you decide to sell or not. There is no risk, obligation or hassle.

How do I expedite the sales process?

Fill out the sales form as completely as you can.  The more information we have, the quicker we can respond.

Do I have to fill out the information form you provide on this website, or can I just call you and  tell you on the phone?

Either way is fine, but  when you fill out the form on line  it saves us time and we can get back to you faster with an offer.  If you call, the number is   (708) 304-3190

I don’t have the deed, and I don’t  know the APN number.

Usually, that’s not a problem.  Normally, the  county has a copy of the deed, and  we can look up the APN number  if  we have either the property address,  the name of the owner, or a legal description.

Can I sell the property if I owe money on it?

Yes,  depending  the amount and what kind of debt it is.  We can often pay back taxes and back homeowner association dues  at the closing .   If you owe on a loan, we may be able to   buy the property subject to the loan, or  you could pay it off with the proceeds from the sale, if there is enough equity.

Can I sell the property to you if it’s listed with a real estate broker?

It usually does not make sense to do this, as you would still have to pay the broker the real estate commission.  You might ask the broker to cancel the listing,  or, if he does not agree, just wait until the listing expires.

Do I need to have a recent survey? What about a perc test and a  title commitment from a title insurance company?

No, you don’t need any of these.  We do all of our own research, and pay  for it ourselves. You will have no out of pocket expenses whatsoever, so the price we quote you is what you get at the closing table.

How soon will I hear from you?

We will contact you within 48 hours with any questions that we might have, and have an offer for you within 14 days or less.

How can you buy properties in all areas of the United States?

For the most part, we rely on  personal experience and a variety of special maps to evaluate properties.  For the properties that require more research,  we have associates in most locations who  assist us in visiting and evaluating properties.  If you live near the property you wish to sell, we may ask that you assist our associate  in showing him the property.

How do you close the sale, and when do I get my check?

Depending on local laws and customs, we may ask you to come to a title company , an attorney’s office, or simply a notary public.  Your cashier’s check will be immediately available at the closing table right after you sign the deed.

 I have been told that I don’t own the mineral rights on  my property .  Will you buy a property without the mineral rights?

Yes, if your property is in an area of the country where  that is common.  Otherwise, there are several ways you can try to remedy the problem; we’ll tell you about them if you decide to sell to us.

When I count up all the money I have spent on improving this property over the years,  versus what I can get for it now, I have a loss.   Is this loss tax deductible off my current income?

Yes;  but talk with your accountant.  Some, or most, may be  deductible, but tax laws do change sometimes.

My neighbor’s fence is over on my property.  Do I have to take care of this situation before you will buy it?

Generally  the answer is no,  if it is a small distance over the boundary line.  If there is an encroachment that  interferes with the use of the property  in  any way, that is a more serious matter.  You might want to look up on the internet the definitions of  “adverse possession” and easement”.

My neighbor lets me have access to my  land by driving across his property.  If I sell the land, will the next owner be able to do that  also?

Yes, if  there is a written easement agreement.   If  the neighbor has  only given verbal permission  for you and your guests to drive across his land,  this would probably  be what in legalese would amount to a  “license”,  and  this permission would be for you only.  A new owner would have to  ask permission afresh.

That being said,  if you have been driving across the property for twenty years or more without  the  neighbor’s permission,  you might  be able to claim the right to do so for yourself and your successors   by adverse possession.  See a local lawyer about further details, as state laws vary.

If I sell the land,  I might have to pay capital gains tax.  Is there any way around it?

Yes, four ways, depending on your particular situation.

The first thing to do is to total up all of the expenses  you have had since you owned the property, including travel expenses.  The amount  might surprise  you, and go a long ways towards erasing your gain.  If the total of what you have spent over the years  is classified as capital expense,  and this  exceeds the sale price,  it might, in fact, make for a capital loss, which could be immediately deducted from your current income.  Your accountant would be able to classify your expenses into operating expenses, if any, and capital expenses.

Secondly, you might consider doing a 1031 tax deferred exchange.  This is a way of rolling your profit forward into your next  investment, and thereby postponing  paying your capital gains tax. Again, your accountant will most likely know how to do this.

Thirdly,  if you sell the property with time payments, on an installment plan, you will pay taxes gradually  in the years that you receive the payments, when you might be in a lower tax bracket.

And finally, you might consider donating  all or part of the land, or giving a conservation easement on the land, to  a  non-profit land trust, as this will enable you to deduct either the entire value of the land, or part of it, from  your  income.

If I let someone take an option on my property, at what point  do I  state the profit or loss on my income tax return?

Profit or loss on an option transaction is not recognized  until the year that the option is exercised, that it when the property is actually sold.

 I bought this property together with my husband, who passed away.  Can I sell it now, or do I have to go to court first?

Usually when a husband and wife buy a property, they hold title a joint tenants. If that’s the case with your property,  to get clear title, give the title company a copy of the deed, and a copy of the death certificate.  If you don’t have the deed,  your title agent  can  usually find it at the county courthouse.

 I inherited this property, or I own it together with relatives.  Is that a problem, or can I still sell it to you?

It could be a problem;  it depends upon many factors too many to go into here. If title is held as tenants in common,  there may be complications due to thorny  inheritance situations. The best thing to do  is to consult with your attorney, and then contact us.

If I sell my property for less than I paid for it, can I get a tax deduction?

Yes, you can. For properties owned longer than one year, this would be considered a capital loss, and could be used to offset any other income you might  have.  For vacant property that you have not used, to figure your loss, add in all of the capital expenses you have had over the years, including initial closing costs,  taxes, association dues,  travel to and from the property, maintenance, etc. For more detailed information, contact your accountant.

I am buying the property on a land contract.  Can I still sell it?

It may be possible if you have substantial equity,  so that we can cash out the title holder at the closing,  since generally we can’t buy a property unless we get full title.  Once in a while we’ll consider  your selling us the interest you have in the property, so that we would “step into your shoes” and take over your contract.

Can I sell off part of my property and keep the rest?

That depends on  how state and local laws proscribe minimum lot sizes.  Because of septic field and well requirements,  most states  have minimum size lots of from 1 to 5 acres; others have a minimum of ¼ acre, so there is a wide range. There are other limitations also;  the well must be located  a number of feet way from the septic field,  and the house site must be set back from the side, front, and rear lot lines,  and these  requirements will  generally   increase the size of the lot.   However,  if you have  large tract of land, you can subdivide it, provided that each parcel has its own access. In  the Midwestern states,  if you divide the lots into smaller  than 5 acre parcels, you must hire a surveyor or engineer to make a subdivision map which is then recorded with the county.  This subdivision plat may also require approval from the local Plan Commission after  a public hearing.

Can I get a tax deduction if I donate my land to a not-for-profit organization?

Yes, that is possible. One common way to do this is to donate it to a 501.c3  organization,  chartered for the purpose of accepting and maintaining land for conservation purposes.   You can  either donate the land outright, or donate a ”conservation easement”.  If you give the organization a conservation easement,  you will  retain nominal ownership of the property, but will have to accept certain restrictions on your use of the property.  You might  not be allowed to build on the property, for instance.  Your tax deduction would be the difference between the value prior to the donation, and the value after the donation.

If you donate the property outright,  your tax deduction would the market value of the property as of the date it was donated, less any depreciation or depletion taken.

As there are many technicalities associated with this, it would be important to  talk with a good tax accountant prior to taking action.

My land is in the path of progress,  and I expect it to rise in value in the near future.  I don’t have the time or the resources to develop the land.  Are you interested in partnering with me to  get the rezoning and other entitlement approvals necessary to enhance my property’s value?

Absolutely! We have done land development in several states, and  would love to have a discussion with you to see  what we could do with your property.

 

 

 


Are you curious how much we can pay for your property?

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