May 5

Why are Land Titles important?

Why are Land Titles important? 

 

What is Titled Land?

Titled land can be defined as land that has an official record of who owns it through a certificate of title with the land registry.  In Tasmania this is done through the Land Titles Office.

Do I need a Land Title to begin building on my property?

The short answer is yes, we cannot begin the building design process without a land title.  When we apply for planning approval through your local council, we require a land title.  You can view more information about land titles in Tasmania by viewing the Land Titles Act 1980

Can I purchase a block of land which has not yet had a Land Title issued yet? 

You can in fact purchase a block of land which has not yet had the land title issued, however there are a few things you will need to consider before your purchase. 

  1. You will need to consider the timeline of when you are looking to build on the property. You will not be able to begin the building process until the land title has been issued, therefore, you will need to be aware of elongated building timelines and delays in starting the building design process.  Sometimes the land title will be delayed by several months.  Delays in issuing the certificate of title is common for new land development projects. 
  2. There are also other potential challenges buying untitled land. For example, we once had a client who purchased untitled land which had no easement at the time the block was purchased. After the title was released, there was an easement on the block whereby there was 3 metres where the client could not build.
  3. Once your title has been released it is also important that you check your title for covenants or restrictions on your block of land. You may only be allowed to build a house to a certain size or style, these are important aspects when purchasing land.

Why is the Land Title so important to the building design process?

Apart form being the official record of who owns the land, as designers there is a lot of important information contained within the title that we need. This information includes:

  • Lot boundaries and dimensions
  • Site orientation
  • Easements, type, position and dimensions
  • Restrictive covenants

All this information will affect the type of house you may be able to build and the position.


What types of Land Titles are there?

 

Torrens Title

This is the most common type of title, commonly used for land or houses.  These types of titles have very few disputes of unregistered dealings. 

Strata Title

A strata tile provided individual ownership of part of a property combined with shared ownership of the remainder.  This is common for apartments, units or townhouses.  Common areas on the lot such as garden, driveways or foyers are overseen by a body corporate and often incur fees to manage and maintain these common areas.  

Community Title

A community title is like a strata title however, the difference between the two is where the entire community pay to look after the common grounds.  This is common for areas such as community garden areas, tennis courts, pools or any services which can be enjoyed by the entire community. 

Company Title

A company title was more commonly used before the introduction of a strata title, particularly for blocks of units. The company collectively owns shares or a percentage of the land or dwelling/s on the property.  These types of titles are typically cheaper however, they can be more restrictive as the company controls what happens to the property. 

Qualified or Limited Torrens Title

Is the name given to the title of a property which has been converted from and Old System Title.  It is a form of Torrens title, but it has been issued with a caution, as a result, the government do not guarantee the title prior to the conversion. 

Leasehold Title

The property owner permits a tenant or lessee to have possession of the land in return for rent.  The rental term may vary. 


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