Before you buy a home or block of land, you should be aware of potential issues affecting the property which may impose restrictions or obligations on you. Consumer Affairs Victoria has a Due Diligence Checklist that aims to help you identify whether any of these issues will affect you.

Here’s a condensed version for your easy reference:

  • Are you moving to a growth area? Some growth areas require you to pay a growth areas infrastructure contribution (GAIC). Within a master-planned community, this is typically covered by the developer; however, you should investigate if this is something you will be required to pay.
  • Do you know the exact boundary of your property? You should compare the measurements shown on the title document with the survey pegs on the property to ensure the boundaries match.
  • Can you change how the property is used, or the buildings on it? All land is subject to a planning scheme, run by the local council, and you should be aware of any planning controls on your property. The zoning of the property and any overlays or encumbrances that may apply will determine how the land can be used. The local council can provide you with advice about the planning scheme, design guidelines or bushfire safety design. If you’re purchasing within a master-planned estate, often the developer will have a set of design guidelines that can take out the guesswork for you.
  • Does the property have working connections for utilities and essential services including water, sewerage, electricity, gas, telephone and internet? If services are unconnected and unavailable, you may incur a fee to connect them from a suitable supplier who can service the area.

The above checklist is intended to be a quick reference guide for the kinds of questions you should ask when looking to buy a home or block of land. For any questions you have regarding potential issues, restriction or obligations, you should always seek professional advice.

To access the full Due Diligence Checklist, click here.

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