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How to Find the Site for a New Property Development


If you ask almost any property developer what the most important factor is when selecting a site for property development, it is likely that he or she will say ‘location’. Location is the key to success for many properties, however, it is not the only factor. Many elements impact the suitability and profitability of a site for property development. With an evolving population and growing infrastructure in Sydney, the suitability of sites are rapidly changing. However, the factors to consider when selecting a site for property development don’t.

In this article, we’ll discuss these elements and explore why they are important when selecting a property development site.

6 factors to consider when selecting a new property development site


The most important variable for selecting a property development site is the location. Being close to amenities that would be valued by future residents and buyers of the property is necessary for achieving profitability regardless of if you plan to rent or sell the property. Ensure that the site is close to schools and universities, transportation and medical facilities. In the case of residential properties, being close to groceries and parks is beneficial for families. Avoid sites that are close to farms, dog breeding kennels or car workshops as the noise may make the location undesirable.

An especially important point for residential areas is the crime rate. Utilise the internet to look up the crime rate of your location and ask neighbours about local crime. This is incredibly important to families and can make or break the attractiveness of your future property. 


Aspect refers to the cardinal direction that the site faces. Ensure that the living areas of your development face north as much as possible as this maximises natural light in the property. Natural light does not only improve the energy rating of one’s home and its sustainability, but it is also a major point of desire for future tenants and owners.


The slope of the land is important because it aids in drainage, particularly stormwater runoff. Many people wrongly believe that flat land is better for property development, however, it may require fill to build it up and retain it to meet drainage requirements. While you do not want a steeply sloping piece of land, it’s definitely beneficial to have a slight slope rather than a completely flat piece of land.


A wider frontage is usually favoured with new residential developments sydney because the width is lost to accommodate the driveway which leads to either parking or residences in the rear. Some councils stipulate the width that a driveway needs to be, so ensure that you account for this width when deciding whether the frontage is wide enough.


The depth of a piece of land will determine how many residences you can fit onto the land, and ultimately, affect your profitability. The deeper the land, the longer the driveway and the higher your costs. With a deep piece of land, you may also need to run services such as sewer, water and gas from the front of the land to the back. This is dependent on where the connection points are located on the property. 

As you can see, the depth of the land affects many things for your property, so ensure that you take this into consideration when purchasing the land and developing your new property

Top of the land

Elements on top of the land can affect how much money you need to spend before it is ready to be constructed so make sure that you assess the land properly. For example, if there are large trees on the land, it can be very expensive to clear, adding to your site clearing costs. You should also look out for asbestos sheds and concrete slabs as these are very expensive to remove. 

Large site clearing machinery needs a lot of space for access and to operate in. If there is an existing property on the land that you intend to keep, ensure that you inspect whether or not there is good access to the back of it for site clearing. 

We hope that these tips help you to decide on the suitability of land for your property development. While the location is one of the most important factors, there are many other elements that contribute to successful and profitable development.