Does no HOA fee mean Unrestricted
No HOA Fee means there is no organization that collects money from you for an HOA Fee. There still could be some covenants and restrictions recorded — but if there’s no HOA organization, there’s no one to enforce them. What could happen is a neighbor could file a complaint with the county and have a legitimate argument if there are recorded restrictions on file at the courthouse. So that should be checked out.
If there are no subdivision restrictions on file, then there’s no worry about deed restrictions from an HOA. It’s possible, however, there could be restrictions that were placed in the deed by a past owner. So always check the deed of any property you are considering. And for any existing easements, a plat should be obtained as well. And, if you want truly unrestricted land, you should check with the county to see about zoning regulations. Berkeley and Morgan County do not have zoning laws.
If all that shows no restrictions or zoning — then you are pretty much assured that your land is unrestricted. Just keep in mind. Your neighbors also have unrestricted land and can do what they like — some of which may be at odds with what you want to live by. When buying unrestricted unzoned land, it’s a good idea to buy enough land so that you have a buffer.