Types of Land Ownership in Australia

One of your primary considerations when purchasing property is the title. In Australia, the type of title a property has will determine how you can use the land. Read the extract below to learn more about land ownership in Australia. 

Freehold Title

Also known as Torrens Title, this is the most common form of land ownership in Australia. Land with a freehold title belongs to the person whose name appears on the title. Zoning regulations will determine how you will utilise the property. For instance, if you purchase land with a freehold title in an area zoned for residential developments, you cannot put up a commercial or industrial building.

Leasehold Title

Land with a leasehold title belongs to the government and is leased out to Australians for a specified number of years. Leasehold titles are prevalent in rural areas where people farm in large fields. To own land with a leasehold title, you will need to put down some deposit and make annual payments. 

Strata Title

Strata titles are given to properties that share amenities such as access roads, staircases, gardens and walls. Subdivided land and apartments often have strata titles.

People that purchase land with strata title automatically form an owners association. The association determines how shared amenities will be utilised and maintained. It has a constitution dictating how members should use the shared areas. For instance, it may prohibit you from taking your pet to the swimming pool. 

The association is run by an owners committee elected during an annual general meeting. Members contribute cash to conduct maintenance and repair works on the shared facilities.

Company Title

A company owns the land and residents purchase a specific number of shares to occupy a unit. A board of directors, elected by shareholders, runs the complex. By buying a unit, you agree to abide by the company's constitution. You will have to cash-in your shares if you wish to leave the complex.  

Retirement Village

Retirement villages are estates that house senior citizens. They may have strata, company or lease titles. In addition, you may choose to rent a unit in the village. People that purchase units in a retirement village sign a contract that stipulates the process of selling the unit, the service charges and the terms and conditions of living in the retirement community. The villages usually have recreational facilities such as golf courses, swimming pools and tennis courts to be enjoyed by residents.

When buying property, your conveyancer will conduct due diligence to identify the property title. Further, he or she will explain the implications of purchasing such property and the various charges you may have to pay. To learn more about land ownership, contact conveyancers like those at Maguire & McInerney Lawyers.