A search for properties in the Mat-Su Valley for one acre or more will leave out the majority of the developed lots. A little digging will turn up a curious fact, most developments are made up of lots that are just under one acre. In fact, the lots are less than an acre but greater than 9/10ths of an acre. We call that lot a “Mat-Su Acre”.
A Mat-Su borough ordinance requires any lot that uses an on-site well and septic system contain at least 40,000 square feet. An acre is 43,560 square feet. Most developers divide their subdivisions into lots that are just over the 40,000 square foot minimum size. If they do that with 12 lots, they have another 40,000 square foot lot to sell.
Very little of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough is served by water and sewer utilities so the developers have to allow for private wells and septic systems. My lot, shown above, has a well and septic system on site. All my neighbors also have their own systems. If you are hoping to find an acre or more of land in the Palmer or Wasilla areas that is on public water and sewer you are going to be disappointed.
Take a look at the google satellite map of the core area, almost everyone in the photo is on a private well and septic system. Palmer is on the east edge and Wasilla is on the west edge of the map. Both cities have city water and sewer, but most of us are not served by those systems. We need our own systems so we need at least 40,000 square feet of land.
Make sure to look at lots of 40,000 square feet or more when you are doing your search. If you don’t you will eliminate many great properties.