The right block of land can make or break even the best designed homes. Find out what you should consider to make sure you’re buying the best block for your new home.
If you’ve made the decision to build a new home, you might think all the decisions will lie in the design of your home. It’s true that many decisions will be made in choosing the right layout for your new abode, but it’s just as important to put some thought into the land you’ll be building on.
The right block can make or break even the best designed homes, so here are 6 things you need to look into when looking for just the right land.
The location and local area
The first thing you should consider is the location of allotments you’re thinking about buying. This is a major lifestyle factor and should be considered closely. Are you looking for a spot with easy access to all the amenities of the inner city? Or would you rather escape the hustle and bustle at a more rural location?
You should also consider what is in the local area, and if the amenities you need to thrive are available nearby. For example, what are the schooling and daycare options nearby? Is public transport available? How far away are your shopping, dining and entertainment options? Is there a work commute involved? If so, how long is it?
These are all easily overlooked when you’re busy falling in love with the perfect home design on a great block of land, but they also tend to have a big effect on being able to actually enjoy life in your new home.
Size and shape
It goes without saying that the size and shape of your allotment is a key factor. These two factors will have a direct impact on the design of your floorplan.
Consider all of your must-haves — single or double storey, space for a media room or home office, large driveway or room for an outdoor kitchen — and speak to a sales consultant about your options. You want to make sure you find a lot that is large enough to fit everything you need in your home design.
Make sure you consider the orientation of your block before you design your floor plan. You want to make sure you’re strategically placing rooms with the direction of the sun. This will help ensure your home makes the most of natural light and heat.
Since the sun rises in the east and moves north, your floor plans should place living areas on the northern side of the home where they will take advantage of natural light throughout the day. It can also help you determine strategic window placement to heat up (or cool down) areas of your home.
The fall of the land
The contour of the block is known as the fall. You should understand the fall of any blocks your considering before you buy. Does it fall to the front, side or rear? This can affect how you design your home. Also, too much fall or slopes on the block can mean extra costs in levelling the land for building.
Soil may seem like an insignificant detail, but it can affect basic building processes such as laying your slab. Make sure you hire a professional to conduct a soil test before you buy. This will assign a letter to the soil, which describes how hard or soft the land will be. Class A is the best.
If you are buying in a development, you should request the soil class of the subdivision as a whole from your sales consultant. Keep in mind that individual lots may differ, but your builder may be able to help you determine if your land differs from the development soil class.
Utilities, restrictions and covenants
Finally, before you sign on the dotted line, make sure you get clarification on the following:
Will utilities and services (electricity, power, internet, water, sewage) already be installed?
Your builder will likely arrange these services, but connecting to them can come with fees. Make sure you understand what those fees are so you aren’t stuck with a surprisingly large bill.
Are there any restrictions or covenants on the land title?
Simply speaking, these affect what you build on your land and how you build it. They are common across Australia, particularly in developments, to help ensure the quality of the community. Some common things to look into are the colour or building materials, privacy measures (such as type and height of fencing) and landscaping allowed in the development.