Gardeners are a different kind of home buyer, who is often more interested in the yard than the house. Finding a home with all the requirements for someone who spends most of their leisure time working in the yard can be a challenge. The perfect yard often depends on what kind of gardening you enjoy.
Sun and Shade
Sun and shade are the two most important things you consider when buying a home. If you are looking to start a permaculture garden, you should look for a sunny yard suitable for growing fruits and vegetables. If you only want space for vegetable gardens, look for a large enough space with full sun for at least six to eight hours a day. Some shade is essential for starting plants and hardening off seedlings started indoors. If you love shade gardening, look for mature trees with large canopies and an eastern exposure that is shaded from the harsh, afternoon rays.
Space or the Lack Thereof
You may love gardening, but have little time to spend on it, so you would look for a smaller yard, or a yard with a few garden areas and mostly turf. If you love container gardening, you will look for spots you can place your containers for the best conditions and visibility. A permaculture gardener will look for the largest yard they can get to grow enough food.
Healthy, robust soil is essential to gardening, so you may want to have a soil test done before you make a decision. Poor soil that will take years of amendments to make it viable may be a sticking point. On the other hand, a permaculturist who loves soil building may not be as concerned with poor soil as he is with other elements of the property.
Water and Drainage
Access to water and how it moves on your property is something you should not ignore. Try to view the yard after a heavy rain to spot areas of standing water. Look for dry areas devoid of plant life, which may be a sign of impermeable soil or an underlayer of hardpan. Also look for erosion or signs of soil being washed down a slope. These are all circumstances that may cost to repair or remedy. A percolation test is a valuable tool in determining soil drainage. This is especially important for homes with septic systems.
When a gardener looks to buy a house, the first thing he sees is the yard. The perfect yard depends on what kind of gardens you want and the extent of work and expense you are willing to accept to remedy problems. Be sure to give your real estate agent, such as RE/MAX EXECUTIVES PLUS, a list of all your yard requirements in advance, so you will only be shown yards that are as close to perfect as possible.