Winter Property Visits can be Rewarding, but Plan Ahead


If you’re looking to buy recreational property in northern states like Minnesota and Idaho, you might wonder whether you can have a productive property visit when its’s cold and snowy.

The answer is yes: There is no reason you should have to wait until spring to figure out where you want to buy. In fact, seeing property in the winter can be great fun and is often an experience many buyers have never been exposed to.

In the Ely, Minnesota area, where Charlie Chernak of Bear Island Land Co. sells property, his land showings often involve driving, then unloading snowmobiles, and finally strapping on a pair of snowshoes. But the effort is worth it, says Charlie, a member of the PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker Network.

“Even if there’s snow on the ground, an experienced land broker can show you the property in a way where you’ll have confidence in knowing what the terrain is like,” he says.

First, plan ahead for your outdoor property visit. Wear proper clothes and headgear. If you’re going to be snowshoeing, practice ahead of time. Carry extra batteries for your GPS unit. Bring water. And make sure you are with someone who knows the area and is experienced in the outdoors.

With the proper precautions, here are four reasons why looking at property in the winter doesn’t have to be a hindrance for you as a buyer, from Charlie Chernak and from Brett Anderson of LandRadar.com by Close-Converse, which sells properties in the Brainerd, Minnesota area:

  1. Between using topographical maps and knowing what kinds of trees are found in lowlands, you can learn a property’s topography even if there’s snow on the ground.
  2. Winter is a great time to get wide views of a property, because there are no leaves on the trees or in the brush.
  3. Often, there is greater access to the wetland portions of a tract due to freeze-over.
  4. Winter visits can provide an excellent opportunity to see wildlife habitat due to the visibility of tracks in the snow. (And there are no bugs!)

Also, with the help of your broker, you can still see how a property looks during the spring, summer and fall with the help of photos and videos of the property.

So don’t delay. Contact one of the recreational property experts in the PotlatchDeltic Preferred Broker Network, and start your land search now so you’ll be ready to have a home base for your outdoor adventures every season of the year.

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