Shortage of development sites set to increase joint sales

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For sale signs could soon appear across western Sydney as developers head to the city’s outer reaches in search of sites for residential projects.

Instances of neighbouring owners banding together to sell their properties as one site have been dotted across Sydney recently, but one real estate agent believes the practice will take of in the city’s western suburbs as market conditions force developers further from the CBD.

“Larger sites catch the eyes of developers who are all competing to buy land to build townhouse and apartment complexes on,” said Brian Crawford, of Matrix Property, said.

“It is becoming increasingly difficult for developers to find well-located sites in growth areas across Sydney and many are seeking land in Western Sydney, due to affordability and forecast population growth,” Crawford said.

Crawford said his agency is currently overseeing the sale of two combined sites.

One, in Seven Hills, covers 2,000 square metres and could accommodate up to 40 two-bedroom apartments.

The second site, in Blacktown, fronts two streets and has a DA approval for up to 46 apartments.

Crawford said the appeal of joint sales is easy to see, given that owners could easily at least double their profits if they join forces and sell as a development site, but he warned people not to simply dive into the process.

“There can be pitfalls to site amalgamation also, and it is important land owners seek professional advice to ensure their strategy is on the right track and their pricing is to market values,” he said.

“Developers are expert negotiators and many home-owners could wind up achieving less than they should if they do not have the right advice,” he said.

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