Property developers who wish to profit from currently existing land holdings may opt to subdivide their land and sell the separate lots where the combined sales prices of each lot would be greater than the market value of the larger, un-subdivided, parcel of land.
A subdivision solicitor will be able to undertake the necessary due diligence on the property. This will require various inspections and investigations with government and local government authorities to ascertain what is affecting the land and how that land is being affected. This investigative process is important because it can establish the basis of the possibility (or indeed impossibility) of any future development of the land, and therefore its value. Some of the matters that will need to be noted are:
- Zoning issues – how the land can be used;
- Developments – what kind of developments require council consent, which are permissible without consent, and which are prohibited;
- The manner in which the land is affected by:
- Bushfire plans and policies;
- Flood plans and policies;
- Proposed road widening plans; and
- Any other encumbrances.
- Easements and caveats on the land, right of ways, thoroughfares and rights of access which may affect the manner in which the land can be developed; and
- Connection to services and utilities such as:
- Water access;
- Gas access;
- Electricity access; and
- Sewerage outflow.
- The existence of any sewerage pipes or other waste drainage facilities running through the land preventing excavation or development; and
- The existence of a water tank or any similar subterranean structure which will prevent or prohibit construction and development on the land.
When the due diligence investigations are complete, we will report to you (i.e. the property developer) and advise you of the outcomes of all searches. When the developer decides to continue with the planned development project, the subdivision legal advice will likely contain a recommendation that a team of relevant professionals be retained for the next phase of the project. These will ordinarily be professionals who will be retained independently by the property developer in relation to:
- Town Planner;
- Building Designer (if necessary);
- Architect (if necessary); and
Consultants may be necessary depending on the type of development proposed, or depending on what kind of land is being subdivided. A consultant may be able to provide important technical advice in relation to the subdivision. For more complex projects, a project developer may wish to retain the services of a consultant in the land and environment industry for his assistance. Conveyancing services and property law legal advice can be provided by Blunden & Montgomery. Many of these professionals will be bound by industry professional standards. They will be expected to discharge their duties in accordance with these standards. In the event that any damage or loss eventuates as a result of the business developer relying on their advice or expertise, it may be open for the developer to sue in either negligence, professional negligence or breach of contract. Litigation against these professionals is not a simple affair.
Once a team of professionals has been selected by the developer.