Do you have any land clearing plans to build a house? Not sure about the latest clearing land cost and how much would you need to prepare a construction site?
Lot clearing is an essential part of building a house or a property. It’s a common activity for those who want to make better use of their land to have a land clearing company do this.
In 2022, the average cost to clear land is $1,269 – $5,101 for lightly wooded acres with some large tree removal. This, of course, depends on where you live. Heavily wooded lands, on the other hand, may cost up to $5,600 per acre.
Read on to find out more about land clearing costs and the factors associated with them.
Factors That Affect the Current Clearing Land Cost
Clearing land is the first step of any property building project. The land construction only begins after the site has been cleared, graded, and prepared for structure building.
As a site preparation step, clearing land cost varies depending on the following factors:
- Land area (generally quoted by square foot or acre)
- Tree density and sizes
- Rocks, brush, stumps, and other debris
- Existing surface and underground structures
- Time of the year
Lot Clearing Process
During a land survey activity, you have to compare your actual lot to the project blueprints and outline the boundaries. Heavy rocks and vegetation must be completely removed to do this step effectively.
Typical cost: $575
Before you worry about the need to prepare land or the tree clearing cost, you want to find out from your local zoning authority about the need to obtain a land clearing permit. Land clearing companies are not going to be completing any jobs on a property in contravention of this requirement.
The presence or absence of this requirement depends on your location, as a land clearing job doesn’t always require one. If the grading to be done for your site preparation is significant though, you find that permit requirements are constant.
Typical cost: $200
Demolition Of Existing Structures
If the area for your land clearing project has existing elements such as homes, sheds, and other remains of previously removed buildings, you’ll need to completely remove them as part of the site preparation process.
Clearing quotes typically factor this in based on the results of the evaluation process.
Typical cost: $1,000
Demolition Of Underground Infrastructure
Remains of a concrete foundation and underground infrastructures such as water systems, pipes, and wiring, must be removed before the site construction begins.
Typical cost: $1,000-$5,000
Gas line installation- $200-$500
Water line installation- $1,500-$2,000
Removal Of Timbers And Brushes (Per Acre)
This step involves tree removal as well. Usage of the correct machinery is crucial to completely remove trees, stumps, underbrushes, and other debris.
Tree removal- $500-$2,000 per acre (lightly wooded areas), $3,000 and $6,700 per acre (heavily wooded areas)
Stump removal- $400 for every 20” stump
Brush and debris removal- $200-$600
Erosion Control And Resloping
Newly-cleared lots are typically prone to soil erosion, hence the need for control measures. Resloping the land is also a must to prevent flooding and ensure an even construction site.
Erosion controlling – $10 per 4” section
Resloping – $989 per 1,000 sq. ft. area
After the removal of vegetation, bushes, and trees, as well as erosion control procedures, the next step is to grade the land. The idea behind land grading is to make its surface ready for the construction process to be carried out.
In some cases, the installation of drills and septic systems is also done here.
Grading and dirt replacement- $19.59-43.29 per sq. ft.
Grading only $4.37-$5.41 per square foot
Other Cost Areas to Think of
Land clearing prices technically go beyond the costs for the actual work. Remember that trusted land clearing companies have to consider movement expenses as well to help you get your land cleared.
The following are a few of the considerations you want to bear in mind here:
- Cost estimates factor in the distance between your property and the contractor’s base of operations
- The distance from your property to the dump is also considered
- If there is any nonorganic debris to be removed from the building site, then it incurs a cost
- Equipment rental is also a part of your lot clearing cost. For example, a bulldozer and excavator rental will likely be required, as will a dump truck
- Unlike the regular removals, if your property requires cactus removal, the process is a bit more difficult, which means you should expect to pay a bit more for this.
How to Minimize Your Land Clearing Cost per Acre
Between the building permit, a potentially heavily forested area, and the non-factored costs in lot clearing services, things can get a bit expensive very quickly. There are a couple of considerations that may make the average cost feel a bit more manageable.
First, you can seek financial assistance. The US Department of Agriculture offers a conservation service, which may assist you with a federal grant to help with bush removal and control.
Next, you can sell the fallen trees. Lumber companies are often willing to take care of tree removal at no cost since they can sell the wood thereafter. However, this doesn’t work out for light clearing. You would need to have a series of tall trees that can yield furniture or firewood.
What’s the Typical Run Time for a Clearing Project?
It often depends on if you use land clearing services or you do it yourself. Additionally, if you have heavily forested land, it may take a bit longer. Other challenges that land clearing professionals may have include low-lying wet areas or obstructions in general.
Generally, you can use a cleaning rate of two-and-a-half hours per acre.
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“Can I clear my own land?”
With the costs stated above, you might be asking yourself this question.
If you have enough skills, experience, and machinery for lot clearing, then it’s fine. Additionally, you may need a clearing permit. It’s best to check with zone officials on this one. Otherwise, leave the job in the hands of an expert.
What other factors do you consider when hiring a professional pool builder? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!