Full Disclosure in Property Sales: Is your zoning certificate up to date?

27-10-2022    |    Resource   |   Brent Jones

Under the Conveyancing Act 1919 (the Act) and Conveyancing (Sale of Land) Regulations 2017 there are a number of prescribed documents that must be included in all contracts for the sale of residential land in NSW. One such document is the S10.7 Certificate.

A S10.7 Certificate is issued by the local council and sets out the current status of the land that is being sold.  The information included on the Certificate relates to the relevant ‘zoning’ of the land, e.g. whether the land is zoned for single or dual occupancy dwellings, as well as any relevant constraints on the land such as whether it is prone to flooding or at risk from bushfires, or even if there is any possible land contamination.

The reason why a S10.7 Certificate must be included in a Contract is primarily to ensure that the vendor is meeting their full disclosure obligations when selling a property or land.  It is important to ensure that the Certificate is current and that it accurately reflects what can be done with the land, or built on the land. 


Changes to Laws Regarding S10.7 Certificates

From 1 October 2022, the law regarding the information that should be included in a S10.7 Certificate by Councils is changing.

Recent flooding in regional areas may have also caused Councils to adjust the zoning, or include notations on zoning certificates regarding potential risks or constraints in certain areas.

As a result, many S10.7 Certificates will be out of date.  Having an out-of-date Certificate in your Contract could potentially lead to the purchaser having the right to rescind, or cancel the contract and you would lose the sale.


How to Minimise Risk  

If you are selling property, you must include the most up-to-date information to ensure you comply with your obligations, and avoid any potential risk that the purchaser may be able to rescind or cancel the agreement.  It is strongly recommended that you speak to your solicitor to ensure that the most up-to-date documentation is included in your Contract.  A small delay in the exchange of contracts while waiting for an updated Certificate from Council will have significant benefits in the longer term!

Similarly, if you are you are purchasing a property, your solicitor will be able to advise whether the information included in the Contract of Sale is the most current information available, as well as explaining any changes to zoning or notations that may have been added to the S10.7. 

Property transactions can be fraught with potential risks.  Having an experienced property lawyer on hand to guide you through the process will ensure the transaction proceeds as smoothly as possible. 

For more information on selling or purchasing property, contact Lamrocks Solicitors on 02 4731 5688.

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