Is there a time restriction for building in the communities featured on this website?
The short answer is No. Most communities in this area allow the property to be held as an investment, a place for recreation, or as a future homesite. Many simply choose to buy land first, and build on their own schedule.
How much are the Property Owners/Home Owners Association dues in the communities, and what do they cover?
The dues primarily cover the expense to maintain the roads and the common areas. (Please click on the community name to see their specific protective covenants)
How much earnest money do I need to put down?
It's a negotiable amount between seller and buyer, but generally you can expect to put between $500 and $1,000 on any parcel of land, and between $3,000 - $5,000 on any cabin/home purchase. Transactions usually close in six weeks when financing is required, a cash sale can close more quickly.
What is "Due Diligence"?
North Carolina is a Caveat Emptor (buyer beware) state, so the real estate commission added language and an option to protect the buyer. Due Diligence is a time for discovery - where a buyer entering into a contract with the seller can purchase a 'window' of time (both time and fee are negotiable) that allows a buyer to make any inspections, secure financing, etc., *and* if they so choose, for any or no reason, terminate a contract losing only the Due Diligence fee (Earnest monies are returned, with few exceptions). The Due Diligence fee is non-refundable, and is a credit to the buyer at closing.
What are the closing costs?
The amounts will vary with each purchase, but the following is a list of what they generally are:
To the buyer (there may be other fees, depending on lender policies):
To the seller (there may be other fees, depending on the type of loan, if any):
Are there other costs to purchasing?
When you buy a home, we generally encourage you to get a home inspection during the due diligence period (please keep in mind that sellers are not required to make any repairs - homes are sold 'as is' in NC). Your lender will require a pest inspection, and some lenders will require a well water test. A lender will also require you to pre-purchase home owner's insurance. Plus, a deposit may be required for electric service. Additionally, your lender will have a schedule of fees that they charge to process your loan.
When purchasing land, you may want to have the soil (re)tested for a septic system, which will be performed by the county Health Department.
Are there paved roads in the communities?
The roads are paved in the communities on this website: Clearwater Creek, Hearthstone Ridge, The Peaks at Lake Lure, Sweetbriar Farms, and Tranquility at Lake Lure. Roads are maintained gravel in the Pinnacle Ridge community.
Are these gated communities?
With the exception of Pinnacle Ridge South, the entrances of these communities are gated. Many owners enjoy the comfort of knowing access is restricted while they are away from their property.
Are animals allowed?
Yes, your pets are welcome. Some communities allow grazing animals (horses, goats, sheep, etc.). No commercial animals (i.e. no raising of poultry, pigs, etc. for resale) are generally allowed, unless that is the type of property you are purchasing. Please refer to the covenants and restrictions that the property may be subject to.
What are the restrictions?
This is best answered by looking over the protective covenants for each community. The primary ones common to all are: no mobile homes (yes, RV's are generally fine), no junk cars, and no commercial animals.
Am I allowed to use my property as a vacation rental?
in many instances yes, provided the occupants respect the peace and privacy of others. Please refer to the covenants and restrictions that the property may be governed by.
May I have a shed, workshop, or barn?
Generally outbuildings are allowed, and should match or have a similar finish as the primary residence. Please refer to the covenants and restrictions that the property may be subject to.
What are the taxes in Rutherford County, NC?
The taxes are currently .73/$100 for most of the county (example: if $89,900 is the assessed value, then ÷ $100 x .73 = $656/year). Many properties available are in the county, subject to Rutherford County taxes only. There are additional taxes for those properties within the town limits of Lake Lure, Rutherfordton, Forest City, etc.
How about utilities?
Electricity is already in place for the residential lots offered herein. When purchasing a lot, the electric company will bring power to your cabin/house after the Certificate of Occupancy is issued from the county's building inspection department. Temporary power is available during construction. Duke Energy and Rutherford Electric Co-op both service the local electrical grid.
Phone lines, when offered, are usually from AT&T, installed to the edge of each property.
Water will frequently be from your own well. Your waste water will most often go into a septic system. Installation of both are the buyer's responsibility (unless you are purchasing a finished home, or the seller of a lot has previously installed a well, septic, or both).
Natural gas is not available outside the town limits, but tanks for propane or heating oil are permitted.
Cable TV is offered by Vyve in certain areas. Location varies and is generally not available in the rural subdivisions, but satellites are frequently used, as are cell phone hotspots/other products.
Internet connectivity varies by community and location. Research is recommended.
How far away is a hospital?
Rutherford Hospital is a 143 bed hospital in Rutherfordton. We suggest using a mapping application to determine the distance and best route from the property you are considering.
How deep are the wells? What do they cost? How is the water quality?
The average depth of a well in Rutherford County is between 200' and 400'. It is best to budget around $12k - $15k for the complete package, which includes drilling, casing, submersible pump, pressure tank, and trenching the supply/power line to the home. Rutherford County has excellent, good-tasting water, without the sulfur or heavy iron issues that plague other areas. Many people only use a sediment filter for their homes, as carbon filtration may not be necessary. New wells may require frequent changes of filtration media (six month intervals) for the first few years.
What are septic permit costs?
Septic permits are issued from the Foothills Health District (Rutherford County's health department), and they are valid for a five-year period. The fee is currently $400 for a two-bedroom permit, $500 for a three-bedroom permit, and if no city water is available, a well drilling permit ($400) is also required. Septic system installation usually runs $5k - $8k.
What else should I know about septic systems?
1) Nothing but water, soap (dishwashing, clothes washing, shampoos, body and hand soaps), human waste and toilet tissue belongs in a septic system. The tissue fibers are the hardest of these to break down, and so should be kept to a minimum. (A couple of brave celebrities have suggested using only two squares at a time.) Facial tissues do not break down in water and should not enter the system.
2) Any chlorine bleach product will kill some of the bacteria hard at work in the system. Use sparingly.
3) Oils and fats will stick to your pipes and also float to the top of a septic tank and interfere with the bacteria from getting oxygen. Wipe items free of excess oil/butter/shortening before washing.
4) "Flushable" does not mean "septic-safe".
5) Septic systems are not a composting system, so table scraps are best left to an actual composting system or the garbage can. If you choose to use a sink-based garbage disposal, you should plan for more frequent pumping of the septic tank.
6) All septic tanks will need occasional pumping to remove the solid waste that settles to the bottom, where bacteria can't survive to break down the waste.
How do they build on a steep lot?
There are a couple of foundation methods that work well:
1) A basement can be cut into the land, giving the house a flat place to sit.
2) A "staircase" can be cut into the land to give a flat place for each course of foundation block.
Both types utilize a concrete footing beneath the house which must pass building inspections. A basement floor is sometimes poured as a "monolithic" footing/slab combination.
What if I have other questions?
We love to answer questions! Call us!