PROP­ERTY

Pilbara News - - Lifestyle - Hay­den Groves Hay­den Groves is the pres­i­dent of the Real Es­tate In­sti­tute of WA.

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Since the State Gov­ern­ment re­leased its Di­rec­tions 2031 and Be­yond plan­ning pol­icy in 2010, lo­cal gov­ern­ments have grap­pled with plan­ning their cities and towns in a man­ner that em­pha­sises in­fill de­vel­op­ment rather than ur­ban sprawl.

This is no easy task given our pro­cliv­ity for a back­yard of our own, but in­fill is an in­te­gral part of WA’s fu­ture and must progress.

There re­mains masses of un­der­used land in and around the metropoli­tan area that make ideal higher den­sity in­fill sites, such as closed schools, dis­used road re­serves, fail­ing small-scale com­mer­cial cen­tres, ex-in­dus­trial land and ex­ces­sive recre­ational re­serves.

In­fill de­vel­op­ment, par­tic­u­larly in and around the Perth CBD, is pro­gress­ing more rapidly than in other places. This isn’t un­usual given the grow­ing pref­er­ence for want­ing to re­side near Perth’s im­proved en­ter­tain­ment hubs and busi­ness sec­tors.

Apart­ment de­vel­op­ment projects give buy­ers the op­por­tu­nity to buy a prop­erty off-the-plan.

When buy­ing off-the-plan, it is im­por­tant to be espe­cially vig­i­lant in en­sur­ing the apart­ment you choose turns out the way you ex­pect upon com­ple­tion.

To limit any sur­prises, most de­vel­op­ers will pro­vide you with a choice of fin­ish and display ma­te­ri­als to sam­ple.

As a safe­guard to en­sure they se­cure the fund­ing nec­es­sary to start the build­ing, de­vel­op­ers will usu­ally re­quire a cer­tain num­ber of apart­ments within the com­plex are pur­chased off-the-plan be­fore start­ing de­vel­op­ment.

A buyer’s de­posit and signed con­tract gives the fi­nancier the nec­es­sary com­fort to lend the de­vel­oper the money they need to com­plete the project. If they fail to meet this quota, the de­vel­op­ment may not go ahead.

The sale con­tracts for these off-the-plan pur­chases are sub­stan­tial, pre­pared by lawyers on be­half of the de­vel­oper and are rel­a­tively com­plex. It is es­sen­tial buy­ers, espe­cially in­ex­pe­ri­enced first-home­buy­ers, thor­oughly read the con­tract be­fore com­mit­ting to the pur­chase. I also ad­vise you to ob­tain in­de­pen­dent ad­vice if nec­es­sary, as the sell­ing agent is nor­mally not able to ad­vise you in this re­gard.

Given the need for greater in­fill de­vel­op­ment to counter ur­ban sprawl, buy­ing an off-the-plan apart­ment for ei­ther in­vest­ment, down­siz­ing or first-home­buy­ing rea­sons is a pretty sound idea. If apart­ment liv­ing ap­peals to you, speak with a REIWA agent about what is avail­able in your area.

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