Ever heard of the 642′ Contour Line in Bell County, TX? Here’s how it played out when we were considering a 170 acre purchase. It’s just one example of why you have to do your homework in every city or county before buying or selling property.

We’ve all heard that real estate is a local game. Truer words have never been spoken. Have you ever heard of the 642 foot contour line? This is something that we just recently learned and this is specific to Bell County which is a county just north of Austin about an hour. We had a really great land opportunity and this property actually had frontage all along Lake Belton. It was right off of highway 36. This property was about 170 acres and though it was next to Lake Belton, most of the property was out of the floodplain. So, we thought we were good to go. We wanted to develop this property. We did a little research and we spoke with the county and they informed us that no development can take place below the Army Corps of Engineers designated 642 foot contour line. This is unique to Bell County. We haven’t come across this in the other five-county metro around Austin.

Again, this is a perfect example why it is so important to do your homework. Do your due diligence. Speak with the governing body whether that’s the city or the county. Again, we had never heard of this. This was something new for us and it completely killed the deal. Most of the property was below the 642 foot contour line and the Army Corps of Engineers utilizes this space in case they need to actually fill the lake up with extra flow. Sometimes you’ll hear of drainage easements as well. So, it was an unfortunate circumstance. But, it saved us a lot of money because, had we purchased that property, we would have been in for an unpleasant surprise.

Feel free to reach out to us with questions or other topics you’d like to see covered.

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