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Risks with finance when Purchasing Unregistered Land / Off the Plan

Christine explains what you need know and the risks involved with finance when Purchasing Unregistered Land / Off the Plan.


To begin, I would like to clarify what ‘Unregistered Land’ and ‘Off the Plan’ means.

  • The definition of Unregistered Land is land which is not yet registered with the Land Registry Services.
  • The definition of Off the Plan is property that is not yet built.

Having a plan B is most important when considering purchasing Unregistered land or Off the Plan.

Due to the amount of development that is happening at the moment, I would like to explain the risks involved when in entering a Contract of Unregistered Land or Off the Plan, particularly with finance.

Registration of land can take months up to years to occur. Before entering into such Contracts, there are a few things to consider before locking yourself in.

Firstly, it’s important to note once Contracts are unconditionally exchanged the purchasers are locked into that Contract and are legally required to complete the purchase. Due to the above, before entering into an Unregistered Contract/Off the Plan, the purchaser should consider their finances.

As registration of land can take months up to years, people’s financial positions can change within such time. If you are obtaining finance through a bank, the bank cannot process a loan application until they have notification of registration.

Once registration occurs, settlement is generally 14 days after notification of registration is received. This means that, purchasers should have a plan B in the event loan approval can no longer be obtained, as in the event loan approval is no longer an option, the purchaser will have to come up with the monies to complete the Purchaser or they run the risk of potentially being sued by the Vendor for breach of Contract.

Of course there are ways of negotiating with the Vendors Solicitors to prevent getting that far and at times can be successful with the Vendor allowing the Purchasers out of the Contract, however not all the time are the Vendors agreeable to this and is why having a plan B is most important when considering purchasing Unregistered land or Off the Plan.

A good way to start your plan B is to speak to a financial advisor or broker.




Christine is a licensed conveyancer and Justice of the Peace at Coutts’ Narellan office. She is highly efficient and is able to assist clients with matters concerning; the sale and purchase of residential and commercial property, retirement village contracts, put & call options and family transfers.

Christine communicates clearly with her clients, thoroughly walking them through every stage of the buying and selling process to ensure that their experience is as stress free as possible. She also makes a point of being available to her clients, when they need her, throughout the entirety of their matter.

For further information please don’t hesitate to contact:

Christine Johnsen
Licensed Conveyancer & JP
1300 268 887

Contact Coutts today.

This blog is merely general and non specific information on the subject matter and is not and should not be considered or relied on as legal advice. Coutts is not responsible for any cost, expense, loss or liability whatsoever in relation to this blog, including all or any reliance on this blog or use or application of this blog by you.

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