How Long Does it Take to Sell Land in North Carolina?

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How Long Does it Take to Sell Land in North Carolina?

Bart Waldon

Selling land in North Carolina, or any state for that matter, can be a time-consuming and complex process. While some parcels may sell quickly, most take 1-2 years from listing to closing. There are several factors that determine how fast your land will sell in the Tar Heel State.

Average Time To Sell Land in North Carolina

When it comes to selling vacant land in North Carolina, you'd better steel yourself for a waiting game. Real estate pros say it typically takes 1-2 years from listing to closing the sale on bare land parcels in NC.

Of course, some plots will sell faster than others. Land near booming cities like Charlotte, Raleigh, and Asheville tends to sell quicker than rural acres out in the sticks. And land that's already set up with utilities, access, and zoning will attract buyers faster than raw, undeveloped tracts.

Here's a quick snapshot of timeframes for selling different types of land in NC:

  • Vacant lots or bare land parcels often take 12-36 months to sell.
  • Land listed below market value can sell in 6-12 months. Competitively priced land may sell in 12-24 months.
  • Overpriced land? That stuff may never sell!
  • Land near highways, coastlines or other attractions sells fastest. Remote rural land can sit for ages.
  • Simple deals with flexible, motivated sellers sell quickest. Complex deals with issues drag out.
  • Working with a seasoned land agent or buyer can speed up sale versus FSBOs.

The takeaway? Selling land in NC takes patience and persistence. But with competitive pricing, a pro in your corner, and flexibility, you can shrink that 1-2 year average. Just don't expect a quick and easy process!

Factors That Impact How Quickly Land Sells in North Carolina

What makes certain land sell lickety-split in North Carolina while other parcels just sit there gathering dust? There are a slew of factors that affect how quickly you can offload property. Let's check out the key ingredients for fast land sales:

  • Location, location, location! Land near booming cities and attractions sells fastest in NC. Proximity to highways, coastlines, lakes - anything desirable - is prime. But rural acres in the middle of nowhere? That'll take some time.
  • Land that's already properly zoned and entitled is way more attractive to buyers versus raw, unzoned acreage. Surveys and permits get deals done quicker.
  • Small residential and commercial lots sell faster than huge rural acreage. Big ol' land tracts can be trickier to market.
  • Cleared, graded land ready for building sells quicker than wooded acres. Having some infrastructure already in place adds value.
  • The more eyeballs that see your listing, the better! Marketing online, print, social media, signs - get exposure everywhere to sell faster.
  • Motivated sellers who are flexible on price and terms attract buyers. Easements, liens, and other issues turn buyers off.
  • Hot real estate markets see faster turnover than cold markets. The overall economy also impacts demand.
  • Competitively priced land sells promptly. Overpriced properties just waste away. Know the market!
  • Simple, straightforward deals close fastest. But title issues, mineral rights fights, boundary disputes? Those can stall sales.
  • Flexible financing like cash or seller financing has an advantage over traditional mortgages.

Keep these key factors in mind when assessing how quickly your land can sell in NC. The right location, marketing, and pricing makes land sell fast as pie!

Stages of the Land Sales Process in North Carolina

Why does it take 1-2 long years to sell land in North Carolina? Let's break down the step-by-step process to see where things get held up:

First up is valuation - getting an appraisal or market analysis done to price that puppy. This step is key to attracting buyers.

Then it's go time for marketing and listings! Creating online and print listings, signage, social media posts, direct mailers - whatever it takes to generate interest.

Assuming you get some bites, now you've got to negotiate with potential buyers, fielding offers and counteroffers until you get to a deal you're happy with.

Next comes the buyer's due diligence period, where they inspect everything with a fine tooth comb - zoning, title work, surveys, mineral rights, the works.

If the buyer is still on board after the inspections, it's time to finalize closing logistics - paperwork, financing, legal stuff to get to the finish line.

The grand finale is the closing itself when the deed legally transfers and you collect payment. Woo hoo!

Lastly, the buyer takes possession and the property is finally off your hands.

When you break down all the steps, it makes sense why land sales take 1-2 years. Valuation, marketing, negotiations - those can be streamlined. But inspections, financing, closing - that stuff just takes time. The key is being patient but persistent through the long process!

Tips to Sell Your North Carolina Land Faster

Want to offload your land quickly in NC? Then listen up, because we've got 8 surefire tips to expedite the sale:

  1. Price it just right. Getting an accurate appraisal ensures you attract buyers without overshooting.
  2. Be flexible! Consider financing offers or terms that give buyers more options.
  3. Improve access to the land - clear brush, add a driveway, install a gate. Make it easy to reach.
  4. Get surveys and title work done upfront. That'll save buyers time and money down the road.
  5. Market aggressively! Use every ad channel possible - online, print, social media, flyers - go big.
  6. Reply ASAP to all buyer inquiries and offers. Time kills deals, so don't delay.
  7. Deal with any liens, easements or title issues before listing.Consult a lawyer if needed.
  8. Hire a land pro! Experienced agents and brokers can really expedite the marketing and sale process.

It takes patience and tenacity to sell land in NC. But following these tips will streamline the process and reduce the typical 12-24 month timeline. With the right prep and strategy, you'll sell faster than a sweet tea on a hot Carolina day!

Alternatives For Quickly Selling Land in North Carolina

Beyond the traditional process of listing your land with an agent or for sale by owner, there are several alternative options to consider if you want to sell your land faster in North Carolina:

Land Buying Companies

A popular option is selling directly to a local land buyer like Land Boss that purchases properties with cash. This avoids lengthy listing periods, showings, and buyer financing. However, selling to an investor does typically yield a lower price point than full retail.


Hiring an auction company to sell the land with a definitive close date streamlines the sale. Auctions create urgency and competition among buyers which can sometimes yield top dollar. However, you lose control of the final sale price.


Wholesalers market to their buyer network, tie up properties through an assignable contract, then flip them quickly to an end-user buyer. This avoids marketing delays but wholesaler fees reduce net proceeds.


Doing a 1031 tax-deferred exchange allows investors to sell their land swiftly and reinvest proceeds into a replacement property. This avoids capital gains taxes but requires identifying a suitable exchange asset.

Owner Financing

Carrying financing for the buyer in lieu of bank funding accelerates sales. But carrying a mortgage is risky and seller financing discounts the price. Many sellers take a down payment and carry a note for faster sale.

Land Contracts

Also known as contract or installment sales, the seller finances the purchase over time. The deed transfers after the land contract is paid off in full. This also discounts the price but sells land faster.

As you can see, there are creative alternatives for selling land faster beyond just listing with an agent and waiting. Explore all options to find the right approach to suit your needs and timeframe.

Final Thoughts

Selling vacant land in North Carolina can be challenging and time intensive. The typical timeframe of 12-24 months gives you an expectation of how long it takes on average. However, with the right pricing, marketing, motivation and strategy you can shorten the land sales process in NC.

Work with a trusted land agent, broker, or attorney to establish fair market value pricing, create exposure through targeted marketing, and handle negotiations professionally. Be flexible with terms and financing options. Offer clear title and surveys. And consider creative alternatives like direct sales to investors, auctions, wholesaling, or seller financing if you need to sell your land faster.

With patience and persistence, you can avoid the pitfalls that stall sales and complete a successful land transaction in less time. Selling land is never quick or easy, but following these tips can help streamline the process of maximizing your return when selling land in the Old North State.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long does vacant land usually take to sell in North Carolina?

On average, expect 1-2 years from initial listing to closing the sale. Parcels in high-demand areas or ideal condition might sell in 6-12 months. Overpriced or problematic land could take 2+ years. Manage your expectations, since selling raw land is a marathon, not a sprint.

What factors make land sell faster in North Carolina?

Location, location, location! Land near booming cities or attractions sells quickest. Other hot factors are zoning/entitlements already in place, smaller parcel size, land improvements, motivated seller, hot market conditions, and competitive pricing. Maximize these to expedite a sale.

What are the main steps in the NC land sales process?

First, the land gets valued via appraisal/CMA to set listing price. Then it's marketed through listings, ads and signage. Next, offers are negotiated with buyers. The buyer does inspections during due diligence. Closing logistics finalize docs. Finally, the sale closes and the deed transfers!

What are some tips for selling land faster in North Carolina?

Pricing it right is crucial - don't overshoot! Also be flexible on terms, improve access, get surveys done, market aggressively, reply quickly to buyers, resolve any title issues, and hire a land pro. Following these tips streamlines the selling process.

What are alternatives to selling land the traditional way in NC?

If you need to sell land ASAP, consider direct sales to investors, auctions, wholesaling to flippers, 1031 exchanges, seller financing, or land contracts/installment sales. Each has pros and cons for timing vs profit, so weigh your priorities.

About The Author

Bart Waldon

Bart, co-founder of Land Boss with wife Dallas Waldon, boasts over half a decade in real estate. With 100+ successful land transactions nationwide, his expertise and hands-on approach solidify Land Boss as a leading player in land investment.


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