Top 5 Tips for Young Farmers Looking to Purchase Land

1) Water:

Its very important to ensure there is a viable if not permanent water source. It is a lot easier to feed stock than it is to water them. Spring fed dams, seasonal creeks/rivers are fantastic however a bore can often be the most reliable water source (unless it’s a permanent flowing river). If there is an existing bore on a property you can get a water specialist out there and test the flow rate and viability before purchasing the land

2) Land – soil type and versatility – weeds order:

Depending on your region there are multiple types of soils from your sandy loam to highly productive black basalt. Depending on what you want your enterprise to be this is very important to consider.  It is also very important to check with the local council to see if there is a history of weeds on the property. If there is a history,  there may have been a weeds order put in place. If the property is sold with a weeds order it transfers to the new owner and becomes the new owners responsibility.

3) Infrastructure : Fencing, yards, sheds:

When starting from scratch building the required infrastructure can be a very costly exercise. It’s important that you take this into consideration when purchasing, as good fencing means you can run stock immediately and therefore get a return quicker. It’s highly unlikely you will get everything you want for the price you want but you can’t start without fencing for an animal enterprise so fencing is the top of my list.

4) Land Size/Land Zone:

Check the zoning of the land as this will determine what can be done on your land.  RU1 Primary Production: has a minimum requirement of 100 hectares if you wish to build a home on your property. When there are two or more zones appear the property is affected in part by each zone. This can pose problems if your chosen business/enterprise is not permitted by the zoning.

5) Access to the property and legal advice:

Always seek professional legal advice through a solicitor – they are there to help you understand the legal jargon that can confuse someone new to buying a property. An example of the importance of getting legal advice is if you are buying a property that is accessed through another person’s property you need to have a legal right of carriageway to access land. In the event of a dispute this means you cannot be locked out of accessing your property.

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Expert article by Dave Goldring