Derek Morgan
Derek Morgan
Farmers shaking hands making a deal on land
Derek Morgan
Derek Morgan
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Key Documents to Streamline Your Land Sale

Selling land involves a significant amount of paperwork, which can be overwhelming for those unfamiliar with the process. To simplify the process and ensure all necessary documents are gathered, it's essential to work with an experienced real estate agent. In this blog post, we'll discuss the key documents required when selling land and how a real estate agent can help make the process smoother.

Documentation Needed for Selling Land

Title and Deed

The title deed is the most important document needed when selling land and is proof of ownership. It is an official document that is created and registered with the government, proving that the seller has clear title to the property. The title deed also establishes the seller's legal right to transfer the property to another person.

Purchase Agreement

When selling land, the purchase agreement is a critical document that outlines the terms of the sale. It includes the purchase price, closing date, and any contingencies that may be included. It is signed by both the buyer and the seller to serve as proof of the agreed-upon terms of the sale. Additionally, it contains the official identification details of both parties, ensuring that the transaction is legally valid. Without a purchase agreement, there is no record of the terms of the sale and no legal recourse in case of disputes.

Bill of Sale

The bill of sale is the document that establishes the sale and confirms that the money mentioned in the purchase agreement has been paid. This document is typically signed by both the buyer and the seller and is notarized if required.

Survey of the Property

A survey or topographical map of the property is important to help potential buyers visualize the boundaries and any features on or near the property, such as trees, fences, and buildings. It may also be necessary to create a legal description of the land if one was not created before.

For more information, read What is a Property Survey?

Disclosure Statement

When selling land, it's important to provide all relevant information truthfully and in good faith. In some states, a disclosure form may be required to inform buyers of any known hazards or faults that could impact the land's value in the future. It's crucial to complete this form accurately and thoroughly to avoid any legal issues down the line.

Environmental Reports

Environmental reports may be necessary before finalizing the sale of land. These reports may cover soil, water, and air quality, as well as evaluate the potential impact of any future development on the land. Local government may require submission of these reports.

List of Assets Being Sold with the Land

A list of assets being sold with the land should be prepared to identify any fixtures, structures, or other items that are included in the sale of the land. This list should be detailed and include any special conditions or limitations that may apply.

Property Taxes

Before selling land, all property taxes should be paid up to date. A potential buyer may be hesitant to purchase land if they are responsible for unpaid property taxes. Having all property taxes paid up to date ensures a smoother transaction.

Paperwork Covering Leases, Easements, and More

These agreements could affect the buyer's plans for the land or even their ability to use it, so it's crucial to provide all relevant documentation. This includes lease agreements, easement agreements, and any other contracts or legal documents pertaining to the property. The paperwork covering these agreements should be included in the documentation needed for the sale of the land.

Property Surveyor

Legal Aspects of Selling Land

Zoning Regulations

Local zoning regulations and associated restrictions can have a significant impact on the sale and may affect the property's value. Compliance with these regulations can ensure that buyers are aware of any limitations and restrictions on the land. It's also important to disclose any restrictions or limitations to potential buyers to avoid any surprises down the line. Additionally, understanding any associated easements or building/use restrictions is vital, as it can affect the sale and the property's use in the future.

Easements and Rights-of-Way

Easements are agreements that allow others to access or use the land for a specific purpose, so it's important to research any existing easements or rights-of-way before selling the land. This can help buyers understand any limitations or restrictions on the land, which may affect their decision to purchase the land.

Building and Use Restrictions

Building and use restrictions significantly impact the value and potential uses of land, making them important legal considerations when selling property. These restrictions can be imposed by local zoning laws or private covenants and easements, and may limit a buyer's ability to use the land as intended. For example, if the property is zoned for residential use only, the buyer cannot build a commercial property on the land. It's crucial to research and disclose these restrictions before listing the land for sale to ensure that buyers are informed of any limitations on the use of the property.

Tax Implications

Selling land can have significant tax implications, and it's essential to understand them before proceeding with a sale. Capital gains tax is a levy on the sale of capital assets, such as real estate. The amount owed depends on how long the property has been held. Property tax is based on the property's value and sellers may be responsible for paying the tax until the end of the fiscal year. Income tax is levied on the profits made from selling land, and the calculation is complicated. It's advisable to consult a tax expert to reduce the tax burden. Sellers must report the sale on their tax return and retain all relevant documents for future use.

To learn more, read How to Avoid Capital Gains Tax and What are Real Estate Taxes?


In summary, selling land involves a lot of paperwork, but working with an experienced real estate agent can help make the process smoother. With these key factors in mind, sellers can successfully navigate the sale of their land and ensure a smoother transaction.

At Unreal Estate, we strive to make the complex world of real estate simple and easy to understand. We'd love to hear your thoughts about this article and our blog. Let us know how we did by completing the Unreal Estate Blog Feedback Survey.

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