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Tips for Buying Property That Needs Work

There's a lot to consider if you're looking at buying a property that needs to be re-built or renovated - read on!

The first thing, is be really honest with yourself about why it is you want to do this.  I mean, do you really just not like what's out there?  Or potentially, what you want isn't actually available in the area - but you need to really understand too, your own abilities with regards to building, and the time frames involved.  And, the capability of being able to get what you want in the area that you're looking.

When somebody's in that situation themselves, one of the things that's often overlooked is the holding cost.  And more specifically, the cost that it's going to take for you to move out of the house whilst the building project is being done.  Now, keep in mind that some of these larger projects can take twelve months or more, so it's really important that you factor those costs in when you're doing your feasibility, so you know the true cost before you undertake the project.

Be aware of the holding costs

Go to the local council in the areas that you're thinking about, and familiarize yourself with their planning controls, so that you understand what it is that you're actually going to be able to build on a particular sight.  And you'll find that different councils have very, very different requirements and different planning controls, so therefore, what you can build in one suburb or area is going to be totally different to what you can build in another.

Look into council's planning controls.

Another thing to be mindful of is whether the property that you've got your eye on is in a conservation area, or has some heritage significance. Because if it does, your options are going to be limited, and you won't be able to knock it down. If you're buying in a conservation area, you've probably got a street that's lined with really pretty period homes, and really that's something that adds value to a property over time.  And if you're buying in an area where you're able to knock down and rebuild, you've got no real guarantees as to what the street will look like over time - it could end up being a bit of a mishmash of different architectural styles and periods.  So it's something to be aware of for future capital growth.

Is the property heritage listed?

So, it's also good to keep in mind - if you do have the choice of whether you do a major renovation or a re-build - in a lot of cases, the numbers dictate that it might be best for you to start from scratch, because that may be the most cost-effective solution for you. Alun and Angela did do quite a bit of research, and they were able to work out which suburbs they could actually build their dream home in from scratch, and which suburbs they'd need to renovate - and it's very important to have that understanding before making a decision to buy a property to build or renovate.

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