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The Process of Buying Off-The-Plan 

 February 1, 2022

When you’re looking to buy a new home, purchasing property off-the-plan can be an attractive option for a number of reasons. 

The buying off-the-plan process differs from the regular property purchasing journey. First and foremost it is important t understand that there is no tangible property as of yet. While you obviously can’t view the property, most experienced and qualified developers should be able to give you an idea of what to expect from your future property. Many will offer a display suite visit, so purchasers can gain a sensory experience of what they can expect from their future home. As off-the-plan specialists, we thought we could help you with a basic guide, so you have a better understanding of what to expect when meandering down this option of property purchasing. 

What Makes Off-The-Plan Purchasing Different?

Buying a house, apartment or townhouse ‘off-the-plan’ means signing a contract to buy a property that is yet to be built. You can view the developer’s plans, designs and renders for the property, but can’t view a physical building.

Typically, purchasers pay an initial 10% deposit, with the balance of funds not due until construction is complete. 

The Process Of Purchasing Off-The-Plan

Step 1: Research Where You Want To Live

Begin with research. The start of the off-the-plan process starts in the same way it would if you were purchasing a completed home. Start by exploring suburbs that you would prefer to live or invest in. Once you’ve narrowed down your selection, it’s best to book a private inspection at a display suite, where you can gain a tangible experience of the finishes and speak to an experienced sales representative.

Step 2: Do Your Due Diligence 

Start by understanding any of the current government schemes and incentives and check your eligibility. Secondly, start to research the developer to determine if you can trust them and their reliability. The best practices to determine their trustworthiness is to:

  • See their track record
  • View an progress updates on current projects 
  • See their display suite 
  • Speak face-to-face with a sales representative
  • Read reviews

Step 3: Visit The Display Suite

Book a private appointment and visit a display suite. Here you can gain a first-hand experience of what your new home will look like, in addition to discussing options, floor plans and any questions you have. 

Step 4: Get A Loan Pre Approval 

This step is quite important as you don’t want to pay a deposit on a home and then get rejected by the bank. It’s important to understand the borrowing power you possess and what your repayments, post-construction, will encompass. 

Step 5: Make An Offer

Once you find your perfect off-the-plan home you can make your offer. If your offer is successful, to hold the property, you’ll usually be asked to place a reservation fee – this could be as much as $1,000 and is usually non-refundable.

You may wish to appoint a conveyancer to carry out the legal work involved in your property purchase. The conveyancer will help by reviewing any legally binding contracts and ensuring you understand all of your contractual obligations and the developer’s requirements.

You’ll need to complete any paperwork, with the help of your conveyancer, within the timescales set by the developer. They’ll then facilitate the exchange of contracts and payment of the deposit.

Step 6: Stay Up To Date

You can stay up to date with all the developer’s progress updates, by signing up for emails, newsletters and/or progress reports. Alternatively, if your developer doesn’t provide these options, you can stay in contact with the sales staff.

Step 7: Plan Your Move-In

When it comes to that exciting time of moving in, there’ll be two dates to bear in mind. The first is the ‘build completion date’, which is when the developer expects the work to be completed and the resident’s move-in date (this will only ever be an approximate date and shouldn’t be sorely relied on). The second date is the ‘long-stop date’, which is the latest date the developer expects to have the property completed.

The Benefits of Buying Off-The-Plan

There may be some hesitation about purchasing an off-the-plan property which is why you should always feel 100% in your decision. Although there are risks associated, they can be mitigated if you have a trustworthy developer. The benefits of purchasing a property off-the-plan do outweigh the negatives. Let’s take a look at how you can benefit from this type of purchasing. 

1. Massive Stamp Duty Savings and Concessions 

There are a host of government grants and incentives available for off-the-plan purchasing that isn’t available to those who purchase an already established property. These range from free stamp duty to first homeowners grants and much more! Many of these concessions are available to all owner-occupiers. So contact us now for more information. 

2. Lock In The Price

With property prices booming across the country, when you purchase an off-the-plan property you lock in the price. This means that in 12 months (this is the average time it takes for a low-rise apartment project to be completed) you can watch your property value grow. 

3. A New Home, Means No Repairs

When you move into a fresh brand new home, nobody has lived in the property before, which means there is no damage. Also, if there are any issues you can contact the developer, as your property is under warranty, and they will fix any damages/issues that have occurred. 

4. More Energy Efficient Buildings

New properties must meet stringent energy efficiency requirements, so you will also save money on your energy bill. Here at Cornus Developments, we have many energy efficient inclusions throughout our projects such as; energy efficient appliances, double glazed windows and double insulated walls which facilitate natural cross-ventilation, solar panels for the common areas and smart sensors, which all also help to reduce body corporate fees. 

5. Break Into The Property Market

Buying off the plan is one of the easiest ways to enter the property market. You can get started with just a 10% deposit, with the remaining balance due when construction is complete. This gives you more time to save for your mortgage, moving costs and new furniture. 

6. Capital growth

Once you sign the contract there is a possibility that the value of your property will increase, due to rising property prices and demand. This rise could mean that your loan to value ratio decreases.  

Here at Cornus Developments, we pride ourselves on being experts in off-the-plan purchasing. We are here to help guide you through the process, from development to construction. You can chat with our friendly team today and find out more information regarding our latest off-the-plan apartment opportunities. If you have any questions about off-the-plan purchasing, take a look at our blog; Top 10 Questions Regarding Off-The-Plan Purchasing. To get in contact, fill in the form below or call our sales team on 1800 267 687.

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