Whether you are looking to buy or sell acreage in Western North Carolina, having an understanding of many details is crucial to success. For land buyers, verifying information about the property and asking the right questions allows for informed decisions to be made. For sellers, compiling the right information and marketing professionally generates more buyer interest and helps facilitate smooth transactions.

Below is a list of details mountain land and acreage buyers and sellers should pay attention to. This list is by no means exhaustive! It is intended to offer an overview of the information buyers should look for, and sellers should take the time to compile and advertise.

Highest and Best Use?

What is the buyer’s highest and best use for the property? This is often subjective to individual buyers. Sellers should note highest and best potential uses for marketing.


What is the topography of the land? Steep, sloping, rolling, or flat are topography examples.


Location is one of the most important factors in determining land value.

Natural Capital

Every tract of land offers a different natural environment. Examples include vegetation and animal species, merchantable timber, age of forests, water presence and quality, pastureland, tillable acreage, soil types, rainfall data, minerals, and viewsheds, to name a few. Economic value exists in harvestable timber, minerals, and agricultural fields, while personal value also exists in the natural setting of pristine mountain tracts, conservation / resource protection, and tax-deferred benefits.

Utilities & Infrastructure

Utility & infrastructure examples include electricity, water, sewerage, cable & internet, stormwater, also natural gas & propane.


A survey defines property lines determine the exact amount of land for sale. A survey will any easements or encroachments noted on the deed and title of the property. The survey is delivered as a plat (map) and can vary in information included.

Land Improvements

Improvements on land tracts can come in many forms, shapes, and sizes. What improvements exist on the property, and what value do they hold? Examples include houses, outbuildings, barns, roadways, utilities, walls, fencing, wells, landscaping, cattle pens, pasture, feed lots, row cropping, irrigation, and more.

Zoning and Restrictions

Investigating any restrictions on a property is always advisable. Examples of property restrictions include zoning restrictions, deed restrictions, seller restrictions, covenants and bylaws, environmental restrictions, and more.

Legal: Title

Its often larger parcels have a long deed history. Engaging a qualified attorney to verify legal title is essential for any land owner.

Legal: Access

Determining the best access points helps contribute to highest and best uses. Properties are usually accessed private access or deeded right of way across a neighboring property. The widths, improvement restrictions, use restrictions, and even timeframes of deeded access can vary.

Legal: Rights of Way and Easements

An easement is the legal right to use someone else’s property without legally owning the property. Examples include appurtenant easements, prescriptive easements, and easements in gross.

Tax Exemptions

Tax exemptions can offer valuable savings for land owners. Examples include rural tax exemptions, conservation incentives, forestry exemptions, agricultural exemptions, charitable incentives, scientific uses, renewable energy, environmental remediation, and 1031 tax deferred exchanges.

1031 Tax Deferred Exchanges

1031 tax deferred exchanges are a valuable tool for land buyers and sellers to employ. These exchanges allow for properties to be sold and purchased while deferring any capital gains taxes. Any sale proceeds must be fully reinvested by pre-determined timeframes.

Whetheryou are looking to buy, sell, or invest in mountain land and acreage, there aremany details to pay attention to. It’s advisable to surround yourself with knowledgeable professionals to ensure success of your transaction.

Questions? Comments? Are you looking to list your mountain acreage for sale, or looking to purchase your ideal land tract? Contact Collin O’Berry with the Altamont Property Group today to connect and get started!

altamontpropertygroup@gmail.com or (828)-772-1667.