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5 Things to Consider When Buying an Apartment in Queensland


Intro


Are you considering buying an apartment in Queensland? This sunny state is well-known for its moderate climate, beautiful beaches, and vibrant cities, making it a popular destination for investors and homebuyers alike. However, buying a property can be a complex and challenging process, especially if you're new to the real estate market. That's why we've put together the ultimate guide to buying an apartment in Queensland, providing you with everything you need to know to make an informed decision and find your dream home.


1. Body Corporates - checking strata fees and reports


If you buy a unit in Queensland, you are most likely purchasing a property within a community titles scheme, held by a body corporate. The body corporate oversees the management of communal properties and assets and works on matters in line with legislation.


As a body corporate member, you will be expected to pay ongoing fees for gardens, building upkeep, and so on. These strata fees can be very affordable or more exorbitant and, when combined with ongoing expenses, an apartment that seems like it's in your budget might quickly become untenable.


In addition to researching strata fees, you'll want to obtain a Strata Inspection Report to ensure the wiring, building structure, etc. is in good order. Beyond looking at the body corporate’s portfolio to see how funds are allocated, read its financial statements, which indicate any fiscal problems it may be facing. The responsibility to review the body corporate's financial statements should not be neglected as it may give investors peace of mind in the decision to invest in that company.


If you require support when reviewing body corporates, strata fees, and reports reach out to a body corporate lawyer.



2. Do the by-laws suit you?


When buying a strata title property, be sure to get up to speed on the state-based laws, as well as those of the building's body corporate. If you have a beloved pet, for example, you need to confirm if the building is pet-friendly before making any purchase.


When you are familiar with the by-laws, you will have a better idea of what is required of you as an owner and how you can contribute to the community of owners in your complex. By doing your due diligence, you can be confident in your purchase and make an informed decision that will benefit you for years to come.


One way to make sure you fully understand the by-laws is to hire a conveyancing lawyer who is well-versed in "Body Corporate Law". This type of lawyer can clearly explain the intricacies of strata law and the building's rules and regulations.


3. How do you feel about short-term rentals?


If you are considering buying an apartment in Queensland as a home or investment, it's important to check the current and future by-laws and rental market conditions. Make sure you understand the risks and benefits before making a purchase. Consider the impact that Airbnb may have on the overall feel and community of the apartment complex. If you are purchasing an apartment as your primary residence, make sure the complex is a comfortable and secure place to live. On the other hand, if you are buying an investment property, you may want to weigh the potential income from short-term rentals against the potential risks and drawbacks, as well as the impact on the building’s community.


4. What does the complex offer?


Your home or property needs to suit your lifestyle and investment needs. Does the location, budget, and facilities work for you? How will the building impact on your daily living or the life of those who rent your property? Check the thickness of walls for noise and sound, size of balconies, storage, car parking and security. What shared amenities does the complex boast, such as a swimming pool, gym.


Finally, consider how the complex is managed and maintained. Does it have an on-site manager? How often is the building cleaned? Are repairs and maintenance issues dealt with promptly? These factors can greatly impact your own experience as an owner or the experience of your tenants.


5. Property Maintenance


A property that is well maintained indicates a responsible body corporate while a neglected property may point to problems or hidden costs. Inspecting the building and common areas is just as important as inspecting the internal apartment. In the interest of being thorough, ask for records of previous maintenance and any upcoming plans. Are there any known defects that need to be addressed? Are there regular pest inspections and treatments?

You may even want to consider attending a body corporate meeting to get a feel for how the building is managed and maintained.


Don't underestimate the importance of property maintenance when buying an apartment in Queensland. It can save you time and money in the long run and ensure you have a safe and enjoyable living and owning experience.


Conclusion


Ultimately, buying an apartment in Queensland requires careful consideration of a wide range of factors. By taking the time to research and understand the by-laws, fees, and amenities of the apartment complex, you can make an informed decision that meets your needs and budget. And, if you're still unsure about any aspect of the purchasing process, it's always a good idea to seek the advice of a qualified legal professional. With the right knowledge and support, you can navigate the world of apartment ownership with confidence and ease.

 

This article is intended as general information only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. For specific legal advice please contact us here.



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