You've experienced first-hand the pain of real estate values plummeting; so be careful that you don't end up with property you can't unload for a reasonable sum if things go south. Don't over-extend yourself.

Fixer-upper HOUSES can be a steal; property tends to be priced by the HOUSE and land counts for little in th pricing. More land can be handy, especially in droughts (which we tend to have more and MORE of ) and don't require maintenance.

DO watch DRAINAGE; can be SUCH a critical issue. And watch ZONING; it can be different from parcel to parcel and GREATLY restricts what you can do with the land. Affects price, too.