Do I have to live in an established house if I purchase it with FIRB approval as a temporary resident?
If your FIRB application gets approved for the purchase of an existing dwelling, you do not have to live in that property, you are able to re-develop it, however it must be into two or more other dwellings. The reason for this is for the purpose of genuinely increasing Australia’s housing stock.
What does re-develop mean?
To re-develop an existing dwelling means to either:
- Keep the existing dwelling and build one or more other/s dwelling/s which have their own separate legal title (not expansions or granny flats);
- Build at least two new dwellings on land that previously had an existing dwelling on it; or
- Demolish an existing dwelling and build multiple dwellings on it, with a minimum of two.
What are the approval conditions?
Depending on which of the above three options you choose, the approval conditions vary, however generally you must usually comply with the following conditions:
- the purchase price must be within the fee bracket in the approval – for more information on fees, please click on our previous blog here;
- the existing property you purchase must be vacant at settlement and until any existing property is demolished;
- the land purchase must be recorded on the Register of Foreign Ownership of Residential Land within 30 days from the date your settlement of the purchase of the land occurs;
- at least one additional dwelling, of comparable size or value to the existing dwelling, is to be build on the land;
- no part of the existing property is to be occupied until construction of the new dwelling is completed;
- the construction of the new dwelling is to be completed within four (4) years of the FIRB approval being issued;
- evidence of the completion of the new dwelling/s must be submitted to the Government within 30 days of the approval being issued; and
- you must not sell, transfer or dispose of the property until the construction of the dwelling/s is completed;
- once the new dwelling/s are finalised, one or more of the dwellings on the land must be available for rent or sale to other persons (not the applicant).
Who can help me make my FIRB application?
Our specialised team of property lawyers, immigration lawyers and registered migration agents regularly act for clients to advise on or obtain FIRB approval for many different types of properties and investment ventures throughout Australia. It can often be a complex area of law so it’s important to get the right legal advice.
Contact our team today to speak with our team regarding the Foreign Investment Review Board application process or if you are considering investing in Australia.
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