Building a Custom Home in Boroondara: What You Need to Know Before You Start

Whether you are just starting to think about buying land or building your custom home in the Boroondara area, or are planning a knockdown and rebuild, you’ll need to know what restrictions are present on the land. Without doing thorough research into your specific block, you may find when it comes time to build your dream home, you may not be able to build your home to plan—or even at all! 

The City of Boroondara consists of the inner and middle-eastern Melbourne suburbs of Balwyn, Burwood, Camberwell, Canterbury, Glen Iris, Glenferrie South, Hawthorn, Kew, Mont Albert and Surrey Hills.

If you’re considering building in any of these suburbs, we’ve consolidated some vital information that you should know about your lot or property before you begin the buying or building process.

There are many different types of restrictions that can fall on a block of land, from restrictive covenants to zoning and overlays. Each of these restrictions can trigger additional permits that you will need to apply for that depend on the plan of your home and the overlays that affect your block. 

How to check your zoning restrictions

The Boroondara area is sectioned into multiple zones that each have their own restrictions as to the type of property or design elements that you can build on the land. Any lot in Victoria can fall under one of a range of zones.

Each zone poses their own restrictions, from building height to a commercial only property. To check the zone of your land or property, you can visit the Land Vic website. 

What is a restrictive covenant?

A restrictive covenant is a private treaty that can exist on any piece of land that enforces limitations on how it can be used—creating what is referred to as burdened land.

Covenants on burdened land can restrict land use in many ways, from limiting the use of the land to a single dwelling, to dictating whether or not you are allowed to build a double storey house.

If your property, or the property you are interested in buying, is affected by a restrictive covenant and you apply for a Planning Permit or amendment that breaches the covenant, your application will be rejected.

It is highly recommended that you check for a restrictive covenant before purchasing or beginning to build on your land to make sure you and your builder are aware of any restrictions before the design and build process commences. 

How to find your overlay report

In Victoria, there are 18 possible overlays that could affect your land. In Boroondara, there are five overlays that are most common: the Special Building Overlay (SBO), Land Subject to Inundation Overlay (LSIO), Environmental Significance Overlay (ESO), Design and Development Overlay (DDO), and the Heritage Overlay (HO).

Most building works require a building permit, but depending on which overlay affects you, you may also need a planning permit for things like a swimming pool or deck area, or for that matter even just to carry out any work on the property.

To find out more about overlays as well as other restrictions that could be present on your block, you can download the ebook Buying and Building in Boroondara, which consolidates the vital information you need to know about your land before you start building.

Getting in touch with a custom builder can take the research out of your hands. For direct expert advice you can also contact the friendly team at Grollo Homes.

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