Before You Buy A Rear Strata Or Subdivided Block Of Land
Thinking of buying a rear strata block of land? If so, there are a few things that you need to take into consideration before you sign on the dotted line.
Are the services complete in accordance with the DA (Development Approval)?
Unfortunately, a lot of mum and dad developers have never done a subdivision before. They don’t get help from the professionals, because like everything, you can ask Google for the answers. In the past, the checking processes for development approvals have been quite slack.
In spite of the DA conditions, most are not met. That said, you, the purchaser of the land are responsible for meeting those conditions.
As the new owner, you are responsible for the costs to meet all of those conditions before you can start building.
Before a building permit is issued, all of the conditions of the WAPC (West Australian Planning Commission) must be met.
Planning and shire approval will vary depending on the block of land and shire or local council requirements. These can include fencing, paving, landscaping, lighting and stormwater to the common area.
All of the following items will be required for you to be able to build on the block and may not have been run to your block
- new sewer connection,
- power, and
- gas services
- and or paving
Some of these services may be on site, but not necessarily run to the rear block to be connected for your home.
Services to the rear lot
It is a good idea to include a clause in your offer to purchase the land, that all planning conditions have been met. Otherwise you will be up for the stress and costs of completing those conditions.
Depending on the distance where the services have been left, you may be up for substantial costs to bring the services to your property.
For example, a power run with standard power cable can only be run to a maximum of 30 lineal mtrs. Any distance over 30mtrs, the cable must be upgraded.
If the service runs have not been installed and the driveway has, it may need to be dug up. If the services are on the opposite side of the driveway, you may have to bring those services across the front of the property. They may have to be dug under driveways, and possibly under walls and fences.
Conditions for common areas can be another area of concern. Common area conditions must be completed before a building permit is issued. If these items haven’t been completed by the developer, you will need to complete them, at your cost. In the past, titles were issued without the conditions being met, leaving the cost to the new owner.
For example, the paving of the driveway to your home and the associated storm water in the driveway are considered common areas.
What should I put in my offer and acceptance?
A couple of things that really should form part of your offer and acceptance for the land are:-
- Your offer should be subject to all WAPC conditions approval to have been met prior to settlement.
- It should also be subject to you receiving a copy of those conditions. It should also include copies of the associated approvals.
This is so that you can determine that the items have been completed.
Once the block has settled, you will have no comeback on the vendor regardless if the items haven’t been done.