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How to hit pay dirt when buying land in a housing estate

The keys to selecting a block for a better life

The keys to selecting a block for a better life

Buying land in a new housing estate is an inexact science, with no secret formula to determine what will suit you now, in five years’ time or in a couple of decades.

But there are some tried-and-true methods that can guide you to a successful investment.

Fortunately, it doesn’t involve camping out in advance of a land sales release. But it will require doing your homework on everything from budgeting and savings to planning, networking and imagining your dream home on that piece of dirt in front of your eyes.

The beauty of buying land is that, in most cases, it gives you the option of building your home when you are ready and allows you to use the builder of your choice.

Depending on where you buy will also dictate if you can build straight away or wait until you accumulate more savings.

To most, the first experience of buying land will be fronting at a sales office and viewing the estate master plan. Staff there should provide buyers with all you need to know about the development and the developer, including a timeline of when major infrastructure will be delivered.

When choosing a block, consider its position within the estate as well as facilities outside the community, such as freeway access or train lines.

Besides the proximity of shops, schools, transport, work, health and recreation options such as parks, sporting ovals and resident clubs, your immediate neighbourhood should be a primary consideration. Many new estates create Facebook pages to help establish the sense of community.

Blocks of land come in all shapes and sizes. Some are sloping and others are predominantly flat. The only certainty is that the individual characteristics of the land will affect the design of the home. Where possible, select a flat, rectangular-shaped block without easements and with full street frontage to minimise your build costs.

It’s important to be familiar with the rules and regulations governing what you can and can’t build on any particular block. Setbacks, building envelopes and height restrictions can all reduce the amount of land on which you can place your home. In other words, don’t assume that a 14m-wide block can accommodate a 14m-wide house.

In an ideal world, your block will have a north-south alignment and a north-facing backyard. But it is by no means a disaster if you don’t. At its simplest, the narrow ends of your home are best on the west and east, with the wide sides facing north and south. Living areas should be facing north if possible.

To get a better idea of the challenges ahead, visit several display villages for ideas and also ask builders plenty of questions about additional costs, covenants, future developments in the area, insurance coverage and resale value.

Once committed to building, be prepared to be patient. The length of time from buying the block of land to starting building will differ with every sale but it can take on average at least 12 months.

The Rosie & Rosie approach to investing in property is a prudent and proven method based on many years of experience and advice from Australia’s leading industry professionals. For further details, contact Rosie & Rosie at

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