Buying land for your dream home? Here’s four tips from our team.
Buying a block of land for your custom built home is an important step in the journey and there are some things to consider before making a purchase.
Size & Slope
How big does your block need to be? Are you planning a pool or extended outdoor living area? Do you require side access for vehicles? A basement can be a great way to add significant extra space to your home. Any slope will impact on the design and building costs. When buying land with a slope ask for any contour plans that might be available as the fall of the land can be quite deceptive and you will need to be aware of the need for retaining walls if required.
The direction the block of land faces will affect the design decisions made by you and your architect. Do you have views to consider? Are there views available if we add a rooftop deck? Our architects & interior designers visit your site with our aerial imaging equipment to assess the site for it’s best vantage points.
Landscaping features such as large rocks, feature plantings, dams, ponds and creeks are also exciting opportunities to maximise views.
Consider the sun and the prevailing breezes as these factors influence energy usage and will affect your home’s energy costs. At Destination Living we work with our client to create homes that are energy efficient using passive solar principles, cross flow ventilation and sufficient insulation. Orientation may be superseded if the site has views and whilst the design should be focused on these, other elements should not be ignored. Some coastal sites can find their ocean facing decks unusable when afternoon storms roll in. Consider a second outdoor area away from the harshest elements. The presence and location of trees on the block is important. The shadowing of a tree and the ability to construct a home without interfering with its canopy or root zone should be investigated before buying land. Some councils also have strict requirements and hefty fees associated with tree removal so be sure to investigate those beforehand. We all love a bush setting and our current climate means that most councils have increasing requirements placed on homes constructed in bushfire prone areas. These are important to the safety of your family and others in your area but will add costs to your build.
Zoning & Council Requirements
You should always check the local council’s zoning and development requirements for your intended block of land.. Residential development codes vary from council to council and you may find restrictions on the size and the number of dwellings that can be built, height, coverage of dwellings on your block. Planning controls, overlays, covenants or zoning and council restrictions such as easements can also affect what you can and can’t build. This can be a real sleeper issue and has caught many homeowners out. While you can build up to an easement, if the pipes are metres deep then this can add to the cost of your building.