New ‘off the plan’ reforms recently passed in Parliament are aimed at
protecting families buying new homes as well as revitalising Queensland’s
Queensland Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie explained
that the Land Sales and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2014 was built
on the Government’s commitment to grow Queensland’s four-pillar economy and
revitalise frontline services by cutting waste and red tape.
According to Mr Bleijie, these reforms will make Queensland an even more
attractive place to live and work by promoting growth and investment, which in
turn creates jobs and opportunities for Queenslanders. By increasing buyer
protection and reducing burdensome red tape for ‘off the plan’ housing projects
at the same time, the new reforms are a win-win for families and the industry.
Buying a property is one of the biggest decisions made by most people in
their lifetime. By modernising the current system, families wanting to buy a
new home will have easier access to key information about a proposed off the
plan property, such as proposed earthworks, construction of buildings
or retaining walls during the sale process.
According to the new reforms, buyers interested in community titles
developments will be informed about the size, location and floor level of
the apartment as well as details of common property on the same floor. After
extensive consultation with the property industry, administrative processes
would also be streamlined to avoid the need for complicated forms while
duplicated disclosure obligations would be removed.
Buyers and sellers would also be given the freedom to make their own
contractual agreement on small non-community title developments of five lots or
less to remove undue interference from Government. By minimising bureaucratic
involvement in minor negotiations, the Government hopes to reduce costs and
other burdens to Queenslanders buying and selling property.
Key reforms also include removing restrictions on selling
unregistered, reconfigured land by allowing it to be sold prior to receiving
the relevant development permits; increasing the maximum deposit limit from 10
to 20 per cent of the purchase price to help finance major projects; removing
offences relating to compliance with seller disclosure requirements where buyer
termination rights apply; more flexibility for buyers and sellers of proposed
lots in community titles schemes to contractually agree on the time for the
seller to provide a title transfer form, up to 5½ years; and modernising
legislative terminology and
streamlining buyer termination rights for different types