There are a few things you need to be aware of when buying land on Whidbey:


Unless the land is in a planned development or within city limits, I recommend a 30-45 day feasibility study for raw land. On the island, there can be issues with septic placement, wetlands, soil issues near bluffs, runoff challenges, and even identifying utilities, and I want to make sure you know all the ins and outs of what you are able to do with your land. If you finish up the study before the feasibility time is up, then the transaction can move forward as planned, but the feasibility window protects you if challenges come up.


Determining where the septic can go and what options are available is a critical thing to know up front. I usually recommend that the seller complete this before the land goes on the market, but you may need to complete this yourself if the seller has not done so (or see if this can be negotiated with the seller).


Is there city water available? Will you get your water from a community shared well? Or will you need to drill your own? This is also an important fact to know as there will be different costs involved for each.


Where is the closest power hookup? Will you have access to natural gas or propane? These are also important things to consider.


Our amazing Whidbey coastline is comprised of bluffs, low bank waterfront, and rocky waterfront. Each type may have restrictions on what can be built, where, setbacks, and how surface water is controlled. Be prepared to have a soil test done and you may have challenges with insurance, especially if on a bluff (another thing to add to your feasibility list). There may also be restrictions on removing trees and the type of vegetation that can be planted. All of these restrictions and awareness comes with being a good steward of the Puget Sound and our coastline.


How are you accessing the property and is there an easement allowed over someone else’s property? Are there restrictions on the width of the easement, the type of material used, or how it is to be maintained? How will your driveway connect to the main road?