Hidden costs to look for when buying land for your new home

Hidden costs to look for when buying land for your new home

There are plenty of advantages to buying land and building your dream home - but what should you be on the lookout for?

We spoke with one of our New Home Consultants David about what to look for when buying a block of land. He said it's important to understand the elements involved so you can make the right decisions along the way. 


How much slope is on the land? A sloping block often means the design needs to be modified. To compensate for the slope items such as retaining walls, drop edge beams, or suspended flooring may be necessary to create a strong foundation for your home.


An easement is a section of land registered on your property that gives someone the right to use the land for a specific purpose, even though they aren’t the land owner. Easements are a no-build zone such as a shared driveway, overland flow, stormwater or trees.

Sewer line

Is there a sewer line crossing over the property? If so, encasing will need to be considered to ensure that the sewer line is not damaged or built over if under the house slab.

Bushfire requirements

Is your land within a bush fire control zone? If this is the case, certain building methods and materials will need to be used to ensure the code is met.

Flood zoning

Is your land in a flood zone? It’s important to understand the likelihood of flooding in your local area. If your land is within a flood zone, considerations may require that certain rooms of the house be elevated.

Character overlay or covenants

Does your home have a character overlay or covenant? Character overlay can refer to how the house design presents to the street to ensure the homes in a particular area are of a similar design. Traditional character overlay is about protecting traditional design and applies to homes were are built prior to 1946.

Covenants apply when there is specific neighbourhood planning in an area requiring certain criteria to be met regarding the external design and appearance of the home. If you are building a home in an estate the developer should provide you with a covenant outlining their design guidelines.

Railway + transport corridors

Is the land within ear shot of a railway or transport corridor? You might need to carry out an acoustics report which could determine that you need to increase the glazing on windows or thickness of doors and walls.


Is there protected vegetation on your block? The type of trees on your block may affect the slab of your home, meaning it could require further engineering.


Are services connected? The developer should provide a service accessible services to your block.

Identification pegs

Identification pegs are used to identify property boundaries. Are there identification pegs on the land? If pegs cannot be located, an identification survey will need to be conducted.

Soil test

Has a soil test been carried out? The levels of reactivity of the soil on your block is important as it will determine the level of engineering and reinforcement required to support your home. Soil testing enables you to find the makeup of the soil on your land.

Traffic management

Will a traffic management solution be required by council during the build process? If your land is located on a busy road, near a school or through a main thoroughfare, you may require traffic management to direct traffic during various stages of the build.


Are there any encroachments on the property that may affect the construction or your rightful title to the land? For example, the neighbours retaining wall or fence line may fall through your property boundary.