- It is extremely important that you undertake full due diligence before putting in an offer on a section. During the due diligence process, your solicitor will be able to review important documents relating to the section (including the title and LIM) before you make an offer. You should also get a geotechnical report completed. Alternatively, you can enter into an agreement as long as you include a good due diligence clause allowing you to carry out all the checks and investigations referred to above.
- Even if you’re not planning on building on the section, it’s important to have the title reviewed by a solicitor to check that there aren’t any interests registered on the title (such as covenants, height restrictions or easements) that may prevent you – or future owners – from building on the section later down the track.
- With new subdivisions, the title often hasn’t been issued when the section goes on the market. In these instances, sale and purchase agreements are conditional upon the title issuing. Agreements of this nature should include a sunset clause (which your lawyer will be able to provide), allowing you to back out of the purchase if the title takes longer than expected.
- If the title hasn’t issued, your lawyer will need to check the land transfer plan. This may reference some of the restrictions and provisions that could prevent you from building the type of house you want on the property. Some subdivisions also have land covenants that require people building on the section to design their house a particular way and adhere to certain design rules going forward (in relation to size, landscaping, colour schemes, etc).
- A review of the LIM is also important, as the LIM points out the zoning of the property, whether the section is in a flood zone, prohibitions regarding future development of the section and more.
- Although a LIM contains a lot of useful information, it is also a good idea to check the local council’s planning rules. These rules sometimes dictate that buildings are built within certain boundaries etc.
Note: This post is brief and general in nature. You should not treat it as legal advice and should seek professional advice before taking any action in relation to the matters dealt with in this post. Armstrong Murray accepts no liability for losses suffered by any person or organisation who may rely directly or indirectly on this post.