What You Need To Know About Buying Land

Congratulations! You’ve found a block of land to build your home on.

We’ve organised the purchasing process into 5 key steps, so that you know what’s involved at each stage of the journey. 

  1. Make an offer
  2. Exchange the contract
  3. Pay a deposit
  4. Get sorted in pre-settlement
  5. Time to settle

Still searching for the perfect block of land? From soil composition, location and design guidelines – we understand there’s a lot to consider. Before you jump into signing a contract, it’s vital you’ve worked through all the details to ensure it is the right block of land for you. Here's a guide of important things to consider - How to select a block of land open_in_new.

Once you’re certain that this is the right block of land for you, it’s time to embark on the purchasing process. As you’d expect, the legal aspect of buying land is very involved, so Peet would always recommend engaging a Conveyancer to help guide you through the process. Read more about the legal process and the role of a Conveyancer open_in_new.


1. Make an offer

With your home research done open_in_new and finances sorted open_in_new, you’ll be ready to write up an offer or contract of sale. A contract of sale is the legal agreement that outlines the terms and conditions of your property purchase, including the price offered, settlement period, and any special terms or conditions.
Most offers are either:
  • Unconditional, usually when you have cash available immediately; or
  • Conditional, nominating specific conditions on which the sale relies, such as securing finance or the sale of an existing home.
Before you write up the contract of sale you should check if the land is titled or untitled. Titles (certificates of title) are legal documents issued by governments, which outline the lot details and owner/s’ name.
You need a title to transfer land from one owner to another:
  • Titled lots already have a title, so land transfer can occur straight away.
  • Untitled lots do not have a title (they may still be under development or recently completed) and you need to wait for the certificate of title to be issued, which will affect your settlement date.
A legal advisor will be able to explain these details and Peet strongly recommends you seek both professional financial and legal advice before signing any contract of sale.


Couple choosing from land for sale


2. Exchange the contract

When both you and the seller are happy with conditions and the purchase price, both parties sign the contract of sale. This is called the exchange of contract.

3. Pay a deposit

Immediately after the exchange of contract, you will be required to pay a deposit. This is held in a trust account and cannot be accessed by the developer until settlement (when the property changes from one owner to another).

At this time, you will also be asked to sign a transfer of land document, which is then registered by the owner/developer with the Land Titles Office so the property can be transferred to your name.

4. Get sorted in pre-settlement

If the contract of sale includes any conditions, you should ensure the conditions are met by the due date/s. Your Conveyancer will help with this and handle the paperwork involved in purchasing your new home. They will also work with you and/or your lender or mortgage broker to ensure any loan arrangements are documented. 

Today, a majority of settlements happen online. Online settlement takes the hassle out of the settlement process - from the ability to track the entire process in real time, receive and sign documents remotely and keep your funds safe through secure sharing of bank details, online settlement has revolutionized the entire process.

It also leaves you more time for some of the fun stuff, like choosing your home design, builder and finalising your building plans open_in_new. Your new home plans and specifications should be completed, and the building contract signed, to ensure your loan is approved and your land purchase can settle by the due date.

Couple choosing home design

5. Time to settle

It’s official! Once titles are issued and your contract conditions are met, settlement takes place. At settlement, the balance of the purchase price transferred to the seller and your representative will ensure documents are registered so the title reflects the change of land ownership.

Finally, you take ownership of your property – a major milestone for any property buyer!

peet land sold sticker


Are you building for the first time?

From downloadable factsheets and checklists, and exclusive expert videos, to detailed information to help you navigate each step of buying a new home - we've got you covered.

Find out more
All content within 'Peet's Advice Blog' (Blog) is for information purposes only. While Peet endeavours to ensure all information is current and correct, Peet makes no representation or warranty as to its currency or accuracy. It is recommended that you obtain your own independent advice before taking any action following reading any of the contents of the Blog. Please read the full disclaimer here.



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