Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Strata common property

The owners corporation can decide by special resolution that it is inappropriate for a particular item to be part of the common property. This decision must not affect the safety or appearance of the strata scheme.
The owners corporation looks after common property and does all the repairs. This includes replacing and renewing common property when needed.
For a checklist of common property see this FairTrading NSW link.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Google RE -v- Domain Radar

Domain.com.au has responded to Google Real Estate Search with Radar search. It lets you find what specific 'points of interest' you would like to live near or away from, whether it is 'important' or a 'nice to have' and how close to or far away from the point of interest you would like to be.
Google Real estate map search:

We are interested to find out points of difference between Domain and this new service.
So far we have found:
Google is more difficult for sellers, vendors & lessors to add their property
Domain is more expensive (ie. not free).
More information:
Or go straight to Google real estate search:
Or to Domain's Radar

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Land Tax FAQ

Here are the questions answered on the FAQ (Frequent Questions) page on the NSW Office of State Revenue website:

  • Do I have to pay land tax on my principal place of residence?

  • Who is considered to be a land owner for land tax purposes?

  • How is land tax calculated?

  • Do I have to pay land tax on a property that isn't earning any income?

  • Do I have to pay land tax on properties outside of NSW?

  • If I sell land part-way through a year, do I get a refund of part of the tax paid?

  • Do I have to pay land tax if, on 31 December I am in the process of selling my principal place of residence but I have already purchased a new residence?

  • Do I have to pay land tax on my newly constructed residence if it is not ready for occupancy until after 31 December?

  • Do I receive a rebate if my land is rented at 31 December and I occupy it as my principal place of residence after this?

  • Am I liable for a previous owner's unpaid tax?

  • How does the threshold work if I own several land items?

  • What happens if my land ownership changes?

I received a land tax assessment in 2005 but have not received an assessment in any other year. Why is this?

In the 2005 tax year, the land tax threshold was abolished and a progressive tax rates scale introduced. For years prior and subsequent to 2005 there is a land tax threshold. This means if the combined land value of your taxable land was under this threshold you are not liable to pay land tax.

Registering for land tax
When do I have to submit a land tax registration?
How many registrations do I need to submit if I own land in various partnerships?
The notice of assessment
What do I do if the information on my notice of assessment is incorrect?
How am I assessed if I own some land individually and some land with other owners?
Why does my land appear on more than one assessment - am I being taxed twice?
Other headings for questions
Clearance certificates
Exemptions and concessions
Companies, concessional companies and trusts

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Buyer's agents

People are quick to get an agent to sell property but slow to use an agent to buy. Buyer's agent have the job of helping people purchase the best property at the lowest price.
They should:
  • develop a target property profile through discussing the client's objectives and preferences;
  • search all potential sources of properties that might fit the target property profile;
  • evaluate properties against the target property profile, making their own investigations of suitable properties and providing their own market appraisal;
  • disclose all relevant information, both positive and negative;
  • advise the client to have appropriate inspections done and have the contract reviewed by a solicitor or conveyancer;
  • develop contract negotiation or bidding strategies with the client;
  • negotiate or bid as per the client's instructions.
For more reasons why to use a buyers agent see this article from the magazine Your Mortgage. How buyers agents work

Friday, August 14, 2009

Families in flats built for yuppies

An academic survey of flat-dwellers in Sydney challenges the common assumption that apartments are predominantly the domain of "yuppie" couples and singles who choose to live there.
High-density housing to solve Sydney's suburban sprawl is increasingly forcing low-income families into unsuitable apartment blocks characterised by poor management and clashes over limited open space.
See also:

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Changes to NSW CTs

Among the changes to the NSW Certificate of Title from 1 June 2009 is a new watermark (you see this when an authentic Certificate of Title is held up to the light). The watermark depicts a series of the NSW floral emblem, the waratah, diagonally placed within an outline of the state of NSW. The complete watermark appears multiple times throughout the Certificate of Title.
Also note the paper specifications, the security paper is 120gsm slightly less (weight and thickness) than previously.
For a look at the new look certificate see the PDF file:

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Selling the family home

Selling the family home is almost always a big deal whether it is because of a death, divorce or even downsizing. It can be a huge wrench when you make the decision to sell, especially if the home is filled with memories. Catherine Bridge explains what can be done to help people 'age in place'.
ABC RN Life Matters - Download the MP3: