How to buy off-the-plan in Queensland

1 year ago
6 minutes

Off-the-plan properties are often stylish, functional homes with thoughtful designs. As they’re typically available at a lower price point than other houses in your preferred suburb, buying an apartment off-the-plan is an ideal option for those looking to enter the property market or build their property portfolio.


What is an off-the-plan property?

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Understanding exactly what buying an off-the-plan property means is the first step in making an informed decision when it comes to purchasing real estate. Whether you’re a first home buyer, upsizer, downsizer, rightsizer, or are looking to build your portfolio through a sound investment property, there are a few things you need to know.

Buying off-the-plan means that you are purchasing a property before construction has been completed. Plans for the development and individual residences, including floorplans, key details, and renders will be available to view so that you know what kind of property you are buying.

When you purchase an apartment off-the-plan, you do so with a guarantee of the quality and style of the residence, a timeframe for construction, a completion date, size, fittings and fixtures - all of which are included in your contract of sale.

An apartment is a self-contained housing unit that occupies a part of a residential building, usually on a single storey. When you own an apartment you own that particular property, but ownership of the land is shared with other owners within the building. Many new, off-the-plan apartments boast the size, layout, and even outdoor space you would typically expect from a traditional detached house.


What are the benefits of buying off-the-plan?

Affordability and investment potential

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Acquiring the funds to purchase an established home is becoming increasingly difficult for young Australians. However, because the median price of off-the-plan apartments is usually lower than the price of pre-existing houses, buying off-the-plan offers significant financial benefits. Apartments are often a more viable pathway to homeownership for many first-home buyers looking to get a foothold in the property market.

Off-the-plan concessions also allow you to save money when buying your home by minimising stamp duty costs. You pay duty on the dutiable value of your property. But when buying off-the-plan, the dutiable value amounts to the contract price minus the construction or refurbishment costs incurred on or after the contract date. This consequently reduces the amount of stamp duty you pay.

Additionally, off-the-plan properties require a lower deposit amount with some developers offering financial incentives (including developers’ grants and furniture packages) to further sweeten the deal.

Buying an off-the-plan apartment ultimately has the potential to be a fantastic investment as you will spend less than you would on a traditional house with capital gain over time. Apartments have significant investment potential whilst also being an excellent option for first-home buyers looking to buy their first property.


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Buying off-the-plan allows you to purchase a home in some of Queensland’s most sought-after cities and suburbs at a more affordable price than traditional houses.

Whether you’re an owner-occupier or an investor, the value of location is extremely beneficial for buyers. The value of buying off-the-plan is both short-term and long-term and allows you to make a savvy investment in your future. Many off-the-plan properties are strategically located in the most desirable suburbs to ensure capital growth. In addition to providing affordable home-buying opportunities, buying an apartment off-the-plan is evidently an excellent way to invest in property at an achievable price. 

Considered design

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Off-the-plan apartments tend to be architecturally designed, with firms like Cera Stribley, Bates Smart, Architectus, Rob Mills, and Rothelowman often ensuring design is thoughtful and considered. Buying an apartment off-the-plan often means that you can customise floorplans to suit your personal style as construction hasn’t begun yet. Rather than confining you to a specific aesthetic, purchasing an apartment off the plan will provide you with great scope for creativity.

New developments are generally designed in accordance with the most contemporary design principles as well. By demonstrating a timeless, future-proof, and considered use of space, many expertly designed new developments act as an immaculate canvas to inject your own personal style into your new home. 


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Across most off-the-plan apartments, developers and architects are increasingly emphasising sustainability in their choice of design and materials. Implementing a design that enables cross-flow ventilation reduces reliance on air conditioning systems, whilst solar panels allow for renewable energy. These are just some of the ways that developers integrate sustainability into the design of apartments. This gives you a chance to easily integrate sustainable practices into your daily life simply by way of the home you live in.

Peace of mind

Buying off-the-plan can offer increased peace of mind for buyers, as many off-the-plan apartments offer a range of buyer guarantees that reduce risk. The off-the-plan duty concession is one of the major benefits of buying off-the-plan, as are the changes in the sunset clause that have been implemented in recent years. The sunset clause allows purchasers to legally terminate a contract if the developer misses key deadlines or runs excessively behind schedule. 

How to find an off-the-plan apartment in Queensland

You can find an off-the-plan apartment in Queensland on the Apartments & Developments website.

To start looking for off-the-plan properties in Queensland, click here.

For more on lifestyle, news, and market insights, click here.

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