The recent spate of building cracks, sinking properties and combustible cladding is very concerning for anyone who has bought off the plan in recent years.
The Opal Tower at Homebush started it and then it was Mascot Towers. Unfortunately, I don’t think we have seen the last of these types of incidents.
The rush to buy and develop during the boom has no doubt seen some errors made and shortcuts taken and now here we are.
So, if you are considering buying off the plan or you have already done so, it’s worth considering a few questions.
Who is the developer and who is the builder? Some offshore developers may use cheap imported materials. Check the developer’s website, do your due diligence around quality, sign-offs, defect checks and so on. If the website is scarce on details such as names of those associated with the company, that’s a red flag. If you haven’t heard of the developer or builder before, be very careful.
If you have any concerns, contact the City of Sydney Council because they approve these buildings and I think they have a duty of care.
It’s extremely important. The owners at Mascot and Homebush; their investments values have plummeted. They can’t be rented, they can’t be sold, they’ve potentially lost a lot of money.
You know that if you buy into a Mirvac or Crown development, you are going to get a good quality product.
Defects and cladding issues aside, off the plan buying is all about timing. We have had 10 years of growth and people have done very well with off the plan, but don’t forget it doesn’t always go that way. It can go up, it can go sideways and it can go down. Good financial advisers will always point this out. At the moment, many are going down.
Published by Trevor Back
Principal, Raine & Horne Green Square
Phone: 0428 006 900