That vacant block next door, ie. potential development site, might mean no neighbors and loads of natural light for the moment, but how do you work out what might be built there and how long it could take?
The first step is to call the local council and ask the duty planner whether there have been any development applications (DAs) lodged. Some councils have this information readily available on their websites and by talking to a town planner you can get a greater understanding of what is likely to be approved.
If there have been any DAs lodged, you can check what has been approved and what has been rejected. You may need to order the files from archives, depending on how old the application is. You can also see whether a construction certificate (CC) has been issued, as this can indicate that commencement of building works is imminent.
By looking in the file you can see what sort of objections have already been raised by council staff and also the neighbors.
But many vacant lots remain just that for years on end. While there will always be a question mark over what could or will be built there, you may have years of peaceful living before the start of jackhammers at 7am.
Of course, there are no guarantees, so make sure you factor in some sort of discount if you go ahead and buy next door.
After all, risk equals cost.
If you are thinking about buying a property next to a development site, maybe you should consider looking at our Individual Property, Evaluation and Negotiation Service.
Published:- 1 March 2016
Good Deeds buyers tips are intended to be of a general nature. Please contact us for advice that is specific to your individual circumstances. You may also need to get advice from other professionals such as an accountant, mortgage broker, financial planner or solicitor.