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In this video, OMB Solicitors Partner and Accredited Property Law Specialist, Simon Bennett discusses the importance of sunset dates in property transactions.


Hi there, Simon Bennett from OMB Solicitors. I wanted to talk to you today about a fairly topical area, which is sunset dates in property transactions.

Now, there has been a bit of press about this, particularly with respect to off the plan, yet to be built projects, and there are two types, there is the high rise, typical high rise type of off the plan, and then we have the typical land subdivision, and where this has become really relevant is in respect of the land subdivision.

Where we have a statutory sunset date of 18 months, and with time frames blowing out, quite often, this sunset date has been unable to be met by a developer.

There have been accusations that some developers have been manipulating a sunset date so, that they have the ability to terminate a contract of sale and cash in on increased prices as well.

So how does all this work? Okay, the sunset date is the date, by which generally the developer is required to complete the development, be it a land subdivision or let’s call it a high rise subdivision, and have the plans registered and the separate certificate of title issued for the individual lot that they’re selling and that the buyer is looking to purchase.

If that date is not met, then usually the clause will be drafted that either party will have a right to terminate the contract of sale, at which time the buyer will get a refund of their deposit. So these are pretty powerful clauses.

They can be drafted in different ways and there is legislation surrounding both land subdivisions and let’s call those the second sort, the high rise type subdivisions, as to what the maximum sunset date is.

When you can have an extension if there is a delay in the project, so when that date might be stipulated at a certain period, but there is a clause that will allow it to be extended, and all of those things require specific and expert property legal advice so that you know your rights.

Give us a call at OMB Solicitors and let us help you with this important phase of a contract.

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