Parcel Evaluation Checklist

Parcel Evaluation Checklist

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When looking at new property to build on, take into account the following questions to help you assess if the parcel will suit your needs and budget.

Land Characteristics

Define in terms of grading and excavation, foundation requirements.

  • Earthquake faults: How close and how risky?
  • Elevations: Is the property level? Hilly? Marked by canyons? Are there rock formations that will hamper grading?
  • Flood plane: Near enough to provide a hazard?
  • Is a Geo-Tech evaluation required
  • Is parcel large enough for your new structure?
  • Riparian areas located on site?
  • Soil type: Is it sandy, rocky, full of clay?
  • Subdivision restrictions i.e. conveniences?
  • Vegetation: Are there trees you can incorporate as a noise or sight buffer, or as an open space corridor for common use? Or will you clear everything to provide landscaping?
  • Water: Lakes, lagoons, rivers, streams or ponds?
  • Water table, percolation rate: Will these affect foundations and drainage?
  • Will Snow load affect design of future structure?
  • Wind or Sun exposure?
  • Zoning limitations?
  • Other ______________________


Check those already in place. If not, how much will it cost to provide them, if required?

  Name of Provider
Cable _______________________________
Electricity _______________________________
Fiber _______________________________
Gas _______________________________
Recycling Disposal _______________________________
Sewers, storm drains _______________________________
Telephone _______________________________
Trash disposal _______________________________
Water _______________________________
Other _______________________________


  • How much will it cost to install services and improvements?
  • What will I have to build?
  • What will I be assessed for?
  • Power lines or transmission towers: Where are they? Will they interfere with my plans?
  • Roads: Location? Are they adequate to handle increased traffic generated by my project?
  • Traffic loads on major streets and highways?
  • Existing buildings: Will I need to demolish them?
  • Transportation infrastructure: Proximity of railroad lines, ports, freeways?
  • Is a fire sprinkler system required?
  • Purchase price vs. requirements to prepare site for new structure?
  • Other _______________________


Which of the following are conveniently located or accessible?

  • Grade school
  • Middle school
  • High school
  • Fire protection
  • Law enforcement
  • Recreation