The Difference Between Built Strata & Survey Strata

Built Strata

A Built Strata contains buildings which make up the boundaries of the land parcel with the Strata Plan showing the buildings and agreed part lot boundaries that are defined by fences, driveways and other monuments on the property.

Survey Strata

A Survey Strata is defined by survey marks placed by a licensed land surveyor. The Survey Strata Plan does not show any buildings and is very similar to a freehold land parcel.

How Do I Know Which Strata Scheme I Need?

Generally speaking a Built Strata is used for multiple dwellings where one unit is on top of another whereas a Survey Strata is for single tier developments where lots are side by side only.

Every case is different but Built Stratas are recommended for developments that have brand new dwellings as the builder will complete all of the service connections and the strata units are unlikely to change in the future.

Survey Strata is useful for developments that are retaining an existing dwelling as it is easier to change or demolish the dwelling in the future through a Survey Strata scheme.

Another reason for a Survey Strata is that banks prefer the security of 1 dwelling per parcel of land when providing mortgages.

A Built Strata plan cannot be completed until the buildings are finished and will require 2 or more dwellings on one title which means that the dwellings cannot be sold individually until the strata titles are created. If the land is subdivided first as a Survey Strata then the building can take place on individual titles therefore providing more security and equity for the bank.

Need Approval?

Survey Strata subdivisions require approval from the WAPC and local and state government authorities such as Western Power and the Water Corporation.

A Built Strata has already received approval from local and state authorities through the building process and will only require additional approval from the local authority to ensure that they meet the building requirements of the WA Building Commission.

However, please note… Built Stratas of more than 5 lots or with a total land area greater than 2500m2 or if they are commercial developments, require WAPC approval but in most cases this is delegated to the Local Authority.

Another Important Point

Both types of strata require a unit entitlement to be determined by a licensed valuer. The unit entitlement is the relative proportion of each owners share in the strata scheme and determines the voting rights of the owner, the share of common property and the proportion of contributions and costs to be paid towards the up keep and management of the strata scheme.

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