3 Hidden Costs You Should Know About Before Building a House in Australia

Building a house is an incredibly rewarding yet challenging process. It also brings some unique frustrations and surprise fees that can quickly derail the building process if you aren’t attentive. While you have plenty of reasons to have some padding in your budget, such as flexibility on materials costs, you should always be aware of some hidden fees before you begin building your new home.

The Conveyancing Process

If you think that conveyancing only happens when you purchase an existing home from a seller, you are mistaken. When you purchase in anticipation of new build, you’ll still exchange contracts and show commitment to the purchase before you’re able to commence construction. Because you’re purchasing a structure that doesn’t yet exist, this portion of the process is perhaps the most important step.

You should seek out a specialized Gold Coast conveyancer for this process. While a regular conveyancer may be able to assist with this process, conveyancing for new builds differs from regular title exchanges in several ways. These include considerations such as cancellation clauses for significant variations to the build, lists of inclusions should specified materials be unavailable, and a detailed contract of sale from the builder. The conveyancing process has many complex legal implications, which is why it’s so important that you find a specialist who can accommodate the unique needs of a new build.

Legal Protections

This might seem like an odd inclusion on this list but you should keep it in mind. Most builder contracts contain provisions that are stacked in favor of the builder and come at the cost of the purchaser. This is all too visible when it comes to the proration of taxes, which is often split in a way that it falls to the buyer to reconcile when it’s arguably the responsibility of the builder. At times, the builder can also amend the contract and add restrictions after it has been accepted, which can prove very detrimental to a buyer.

To ensure that your contracts are satisfactory and you’re not signing a document that will come back to haunt you, it’s a good idea to retain legal counsel. While it’ll cost money, it’s an important step that could save you thousands down the road. Luckily, plenty of qualified construction lawyers in Brisbane will be able to review all of your contracts before signing and request any applicable changes. They’ll assist you from the initial purchase to closing upon completion of the build and their legal expertise will prove invaluable.


Unless you’re comfortable building your house on a dirt lot and leaving it as is, you’re going to want to invest in some initial landscaping to spruce up the exterior of your home. Most available lots are empty patches of land that aren’t maintained or tended. This means that your new home might not even have a lawn during the building process. Nobody wants the yard to look like the bush.

While you don’t need to go overboard and factor in the funds for a miniature hedge maze outside your front door, it wouldn’t hurt to at least lay down some turf and a pathway from your front door to the curb. Interested in extra privacy? Fencing in your property will cost you as well. You have a lot of factors to consider when thinking about landscaping your new build.

Start Saving

It may seem like the new building process is overflowing with hidden fees. But if you’re doing your research and you understand the importance of legal protections, you’ll be a step ahead. Approach your new build with a detailed plan, know what you want, and also have backups in mind if anything doesn’t work out. You’ll be moving into your brand new home before you know it.