Choosing the right site

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When choosing a block, consider the location to ensure that it incorporates your budget and has the appropriate proximity to schools, shops, transport, and other facilities.

You should also ensure that the block has access to services, such as electricity, water, gas, sewer and telephone and ensure that you have included the cost and time it would take to connect to these utilities.

Another item to consider is climatic conditions such as where the sun rises and sets and how the block will cope with storm water runoff.

Before making the final decision to purchase a block it is important that you understand the council requirements with regard to building your new home.

You may approach the council for further information however bear in mind without drawing up plans and lodging them with council they are unlikely to give you a firm decision.

It may also be prudent to investigate any plans that the council or other government authorities may have for the area to ensure that it doesnt impact on your future plans.

By engaging the services of an experienced Development Consultant you can ensure that you are fully informed prior to signing the contract.

Confidence improves in Regional South Australia

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South Australia's regional housing market has started to show signs of growth after years in the duldrums.


According to new data from the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REISA) the latest quarterly data shows median house prices in regional SA have risen to $259,000 during the first 3 months of 2012. This represents an increase of 3.6%.

The town showing the greatest increase is Port Augusta where property prices have risen to an median of $246,000 up by 42%.

REISA's CEO Greg Troughton said 'increased mining activity and more water in the Murray River are helping confidence return to the market'.

As the predicted mining boom leads closer to?fruition it is likely that we would expect that the property markets in SA's regions will continue to improve well into the future.?

Beware contract variations

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It is sometimes necessary to make changes to the building contract after it has been signed. If you approach the builder to make any changes after the contact is signed be aware that there may be a cost in doing so.


Any requests for changes (known as variations) to the contract must be made in writing to the builder as early as possible to minimise cost and time delays. As with any contract, changes to any terms, including the cost, must be dated and signed by all the parties to the contract. Variations should not be made orally as they are difficult to prove if there are disputes.?

If you discuss any changes with the builder over the telephone, confirm what was verbally agreed with the builder in writing and keep a copy of your letter for your records.?

All variations to contracts between $6 000 and $200 000 must be in writing, the terms set out and agreed to by all the parties and you must receive a copy of the signed variation before the work covered by the variation begins.

If you are unclear or unsure of your rights and responsibilities with regard to changing the details of your agreement with the builder it is suggested you contact an experience Builder Broker or Property Conveyancer

Building heights abolished

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As part of the recent overhauls of the City of Adelaide's planning and development system one reform has gone under the radar.


Height limits in the CBD have now effectively been abolished and are subject only to airport height restrictions.

Now before people start worrying about skyscrapers dominating the city skyline it must be remembered that planning conditions are not the primary force determining what and when development commences. The market is the primary driver of what is built.?

As long as Adelaide continues on with the same slow and steady growth in its economy, it is unlikely that it will ever be able to support the significant growth that is seen in other cities.?

Basic economics will ensure that the growth of our city is steady and sustainable because if developers become irrationally exuberant they will inevitably pay the price.

Adelaide to come alive

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I cant wait until things start happening in Adelaide and this is being encouraged by one of the biggest overhauls of the planning and development system which are expected to boost city investment and transform the city centre.


This was highlighted recently by Adelaides Lord Mayor Stephen Yarwood when he said that 'Adelaide is evolving - from the redevelopment of Adelaide Oval, the Riverbank precinct, the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and our plans for Rundle Mall and Victoria Square - we are on the cusp of a new era'.

The new planning reforms released in March include two Development Plan Amendments which are aimed a driving the city's growth and development whilst allowing for conservation to enhance Adelaides unique Character.

I for one cant wait to see the transformation of this great city into an even better one.