Pros and Cons of a Sloped Lot

December 28, 2021

When you are working with a builder on a custom home, there are a few different options when it comes to land. You could find your own land as a scattered lot. Or, you could opt for land owned by a different developer or lots in a neighborhood owned by the builder. On top of that, each lot will have its own characteristics. When you are looking for land, here are some pros and cons of a sloped lot to help you decide if its something you want for your custom home:

4 Pros of a Sloped Lot

There are several advantages to building your home on a sloped lot. Here are a few pros of a sloped lot:

1. A Sloped Lot Likely Has Beautiful Views

One of the things to consider when positioning your custom home is the view available from different directions. With a sloped lot, you’re likely to have some beautiful views available. Not only does this mean a great view from your windows, but it also means a great view from your backyard or front porch. The slope of your lot and the views available can help you decide if a deck or patio is better for your home.

Looking at these things can also help you narrow down what front porch you want. One of the benefits of a wrap-around porch is that you have more space and can extend your porch to include different views. If you have expansive, scenic views available from a sloped lot, a wrap-around porch and the right positioning of your home can help capture more of them.

2. You Can Have a Walkout Basement With a Sloped Lot

Another one of the pros of a sloped lot is that you can include a walkout basement in your custom home design. Because the lot is sloped, part of the basement will be underground while part of it is ground level.

Not only does this make your basement easily accessible to you and provide easy access to your yard, but it also means your basement can get a lot of natural light through the windows. You can even flip the design and place the walk-out to the front of your home design.

Doing this can create an impressive and interesting elevation in the front. And, it also opens up a lot of interesting opportunities for the floor plan, layout, and interior design of your basement.

3. Your Home Tends to Get More Natural Light on a Sloped Lot

With a sloped lot, your home is likely to get some elevation. If your home is positioned at the top, it will likely get a lot of natural light because there will likely be fewer things obstructing it. Fewer obstructions also mean you get a clearer view of the sky at night and more expansive views of your land and potential the surrounding areas.

4. Sloped Lots Can Provide More Privacy

When building your home on a sloped lot, you may also end up with a bit more privacy. Your home is unlikely to be at the same elevation or even face any homes nearby.

In this case, you will likely end up with some extra privacy even if you add more windows to your custom home design. If there are any trees on your lot, that can contribute to even more privacy. You also have a lot of options that can help add privacy to your backyard, if you would like more.

4 Cons of a Sloped Lot

As with anything, there are also some potential drawbacks of building your home on a sloped lot. Here are a few cons of a sloped lot:

1. A Sloped Lot Adds Extra Considerations for Drainage

The flow of water, drainage, and wastewater management are all considerations for any lot. Because a sloped lot has inclines, declines, etc., the land can add extra considerations and, potentially, extra challenges that need to be addressed before and during construction.

This is not only true for the lot itself, but is also true for any structures you are building in addition to your home. One of the most common swimming pool design mistakes is not accounting for site grading and cleanup. A good custom home builder will be able to help you. 

Your custom home builder will be an essential resource when it comes to evaluating your lot for these things, and also planning out an approach that works for your land and keeps water draining away from your home. An experienced builder will be able to identify any challenges specific to your lot and provide solutions for them.

2. Maintenance Can be More Challenging on a Sloped Lot

Whether you’re putting in new landscaping elements, working on what’s already there, or just mowing the grass, maintenance on a sloped lot can be more challenging because of the changes in the land, how steep the slope is, etc. The right landscaping for your lot and your home along with the right tools can help make maintenance easier.

3. Sloped Lots Can Present Challenges During Construction

Depending on the grade of your sloped lot, there may be some extra challenges during construction. It can be more difficult for excavation equipment, materials, and other construction vehicles to access and navigate the site.

In some cases, this can increase the cost of your build because it can require creative solutions to get equipment where it needs to be, which also tends to take more time. A good builder will survey your land with you as part of the design/build process and will notify you of these things and account for them accordingly.

4. Addressing Erosion Pre-Construction is More Important With Sloped Lots

Because water flow and drainage are different on a sloped lot than one that is flat, it is more prone to erosion. This can be a real concern if it is not addressed before construction begins. Any potential causes or sources of erosion need to be identified and addressed pre-construction.

These are just a few pros and cons of a sloped lot to keep in mind as you consider available lots and which ones could be a good fit for your home. There are a lot of considerations when looking for land. If you don’t already have specific lots in mind, it can be a lot to take on by yourself.

A custom home builder that can build on your land or theirs can be a big help in finding the right land for what you want. They may even have a lot available in a desirable neighborhood that is a perfect fit. If you’re ready to get started on your custom home, contact Custom Home Group at 717-284-4090!