The idea of living on a piece of land with a babbling creek running through it can be very appealing. You may dream of waking up to the sounds of water rushing and fish splashing around in the water. But while property with a creek running through it can be lovely, the wrong property with the wrong creek running through it can be a nightmare. Always ask these questions before buying land for sale with a creek.

Does the creek flood?

Especially if you are looking at the land during a dry season, you need to get an idea of how the creek looks and fills up when conditions are wetter. Ask whether the creek floods, and also look for signs of flooding. Is the soil near the creek very smooth and slicked, as though it has been covered with water? If the creek does flood, you'll need to take this into account when building your home. It will need to be far enough from the creek that it does not end up washed out or with water in the basement. If the creek floods badly, you may want to look for other land rather than deal with the intricacies of building here.

Is the creek protected?

Creeks are known to be teaming with life. Salmon swim down some creeks as a part of their breeding rituals. Sometimes, specific species of birds may nest near creeks. As a result, there are wildlife organizations that protect certain stretches of waterways. Check to see whether this is the case with the creek running through the land for sale. If the creek is protected, this does not mean you have to walk away from the property, but you will need to be aware of the restrictions the protection agency puts on your building near the creek. For instance, they may require that you build some distance from the creek.

Is the water fresh and non-polluted?

Your visions of living on a creek probably don't involve smelling a nasty stench every time you wake up. If the creek is being polluted by a plant or industrial site nearby, it may have a bad smell and may not even be safe to live by. Try visiting a few times and taking a whiff of the air. Check with the local health department to see if there have been any reports or pollution in the creek.