Pls advise which practical and legal points should be checked before buying agricultural land/Farmhouse.I am in the process of entering into this field by littile investment ,but dont wish to see a flop show.My interest area is within 50 Km of Pune city having a good water supply.
Go and talk to an advocate to take care of the legal points.
The following points may be of use to you:-
- Never buy a land which has High Tension Wires going through. The simple reason is you may not be able to grow big trees and the other thing is radiation which may be harmful to you and others working in the farm. The land should be at least 100 metres away from the overhead wire.
- Buy a land which has direct access to the road meaning you can get into your land without stepping on others lands.
- Electricity is a must.
- Water is a must. It can be a bore well or simply an open well.
- Never buy a land close to the canal as water seepage may be a problem and flooding may happen once in a while. The good thing about buying such that type of land is you may have access to water over a long period of time.
- Buy a land which is easily accessible by transport and you can travel often because of the proximity. In the long run, if you have land which is farther and not easily accessible, it may be difficult to get labours or brining the necessary things from the market and taking to the market may be difficult and money wise not advisable.
- Check the attitude of the owners on all the sides of the boundary. It may be difficult but would be best if you have good neighbours.
- Availability of labour depending on the crop has to be taken care of.
There are many more things. But suffice to say, this will do.
I am assuming that you are going to be actively farming. I did the whole nine yards a few years ago and actively farming now. There were some decisions that had an impact on costs, timelines downstream for me and I shall like to delineate them. Its obviously important to get the legal view but I shall like to mention a few key things from agricultural point of view.
Availability of water: You need to find out the what are the available sources of water. Bore well in my view are not dependable as you are never sure about the quantity that is available to you. Sometimes, neighbors might take a bore adjacent to yours and that can have adverse impact on your availability. Quality of water is another issue and more on that later. Find out if the land was actively tilled (as in crops grown). If there is pipeline and then it is more to understand if it is exclusive or shared. If shared, what is the percentage that you will get. Caution you to consider the net percentage as the owner might sell only a portion of his land and you may have the rights to very small share. Water rights are a must! Along with the pipeline find out where is the water coming from. Generally wells are dug near a canal and water is syphoned into nearby wells from this canals. Ensure that you have a share in each and every link of this “water chain” in equal proportions. Also consider the age of the pipeline, the pipeline capacity, motors etc.
Getting a pipeline done is really nerve wrecking and back breaking enterprise.
The quality of water is also one needs to take into account. Observation of nearby fields will be helpful. The area that you are referring to does not have great water quality and this impacts crops.
Availability of electricity: Please make sure that electricity is directly available on the farm, at least you should have distribution lines close by. It is quite difficult to get the electricity board to erect poles, pull the cables etc and generally the consumer ends up bearing this expense.
It will be a good idea to understand the availability of electrical supply, ask for 3 phase and single phase both. Sellers will say 24 hr but actually that will be for single phase and not three phase. Also, enquire about the days of the week.
Generators are not practical so don’t consider them. Solar is a good alternative but capital intensive. Also, you need some more elaborate mechanisms to ensure you have supply in the evenings and nightfall.
Availability of road: You should have access to your field. It should be clearly mentioned in the legal documents. Period. Sellers might show you some temporary roads, “whaiwats” etc citing that these have been used for generations but don’t fall for it. Please refer to village maps, other documents for easements etc. A good lawyer should be able to ensure this.
Land: Now coming to the land itself. Please make sure that the land is arable. Huge boulders, rocky terrains in between is not conducive for cropping unless maybe you are planning orchards. Try to get a sense of the depth of the soil layer and subsoil layer. People routinely take away soil to apply to their other fields or worse use them for building bricks and other such activities. Lands accompanying forest areas are prone to intrusion from animals such as rabbits, deer and other herbivores which cause extensive crop damages. Fencing is required but it should not be the immediate first on the to do list.
Proximity to industry and factories that spew pollutants is not good for the crops and there is a probability that ground water might have been contaminated. Nearby areas around Pune are highly industrialized and hence this word of caution.
Find out if there are talks if surrounding areas might be acquired by MIDC or by other government agencies. I would also be heedful of land under very high and ultra high power transmission lines.
You should walk the boundaries to get a sense of land on paper, land been shown and actual land is being sold. If possible ask for “sarkari mojni” or at least “private mojni” to be undertaken. If you have almost finalized then pay on your own account. It will save you a lot of hassle later.
In case, if there are good fruit bearing trees on boundaries make sure to understand who are the beneficiaries and get that mentioned in the sale deed.
Miscellaneous: It might be good to observe if others are tilling the surrounding lands. If large tracts of land are completely barren then there might be quite a genuine reason why it is happening. Things like availability of cheap labor, errant power supply, land degradation are probable reasons.
If you are going to make a lot of capital investment on infrastructure, then you should consider the land parcel size. Pipelines, electricity new investments will not work out for anything below 8 to 10 acres.
Good strong legal support is a must. I can cite all the legal documents but that’s too much typing for me on a single day!
All the best!
So nice of you.Thanks a lot.Look for more advises at your convenience.Thanks and regards.
So nice of you.Thanks a lot…Thanks and regards
How does one check legality of ownership, like passbook, or Encumbrance Certificate, Revenue Surveyor report, Revenue land records? Better always to talk to the local panchayat / village officials and to farmers of the neighboring lands. Thanks Rao
An encumbrance in mentioned in the 7/12 land record as per what I know. You have to ensure that everything is settled before the registration of the sale deed. Detail search reports are must.
It is advisable to have a good rapport with the local folks to understand the family tree etc. For eg. If the sellers have sisters (they tend to hide numbers), then it might be useful to know if the sisters have surrendered their rights to the sellers (and registered that). Sometimes, the one of the family member might be missing. These create unnecessary complications.
So I would say that combination of everything is helpful and making sure that all of these are part of the legal documentation.
Hope this helps.