Insider Tips for Selling an Owner Built House in Queensland - Owner Builder Club

Insider Tips for Selling an Owner Built House in Queensland

Selling an owner built house in Queensland

Recently, there's been a growing trend of folks in Queensland rolling up their sleeves, buckling down, and becoming owner builders. It's an exciting journey, full of challenges and rewards, resulting in a unique home that's a true reflection of the builder's vision.

But what happens when these intrepid owner builders decide to sell their self-crafted abodes? Can they do it? What are the rules and regulations? And why would they want to sell in the first place?

There could be many reasons why an owner builder might choose to sell their property. Perhaps they're ready for a new project, or maybe life circumstances have changed. Whatever the reason, selling an owner built house is a whole process in itself, with its own set of considerations and requirements.

So, whether you're an owner builder thinking about selling, or you're just curious about the ins and outs of this fascinating topic, stick around as we delve deeper into the world of selling an owner built house in Queensland.

The Legality of Selling an Owner Built House in Queensland

Alright, let's get into the nitty-gritty: the legality of selling an owner built house in Queensland. Now, this might sound like a complex topic, but don't worry, we're going to break it down together.

There are indeed certain legal considerations when an owner builder decides to sell their property. For instance, if you, as an owner builder, decide to sell your property within six years of completing the building work under an owner builder's permit, there are some specific requirements you need to fulfill.

First off, the prospective buyer must be informed about the situation. Transparency is key here. You can't just sell your home without letting the buyer know that it was built by an owner builder. It's all about maintaining trust and ensuring that everyone involved is on the same page.

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) defines owner building as someone who undertakes a residential building project valued at over $11,000. So, if your project falls under this category, you're officially an owner builder.

Now, if you're planning to sell within six years of the completion of your owner-built project, the Queensland Building & Construction Commission Act 1991 provides some guidelines. The law stipulates that you need to include a warning in the contract of sale if you're selling within the regulated time and inside the warranty period. This is to ensure that the buyer is fully aware of what they're getting into.

In summary, yes, you can totally sell your owner built house in Queensland. But, it's essential to follow the regulations, provide full disclosure, and ensure that all legal aspects are covered. It might seem like a lot of work, but it's all part of the journey of being an owner builder.

And remember, when in doubt, it's always a good idea to seek legal advice to make sure you're on the right track.

How to Sell an Owner Built House

Alrighty, let's move onto the fun part: how to sell your owner built house. If you've reached this stage, congratulations are in order! You've built your own house, lived in it, and now you're ready to pass it on to someone else. That's a huge achievement! But just like building the house, selling it also requires careful planning and execution. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the process:

Step 1: Determine Your Home's Market Value

Your home is unique because you built it. However, it's essential to understand its value in the current market. You can do this by researching similar properties in your area or hiring a professional valuer or a local real estate agent.

Step 2: Prepare Your House for the Market

First impressions count. Ensure your home looks its best for potential buyers. This might involve some cleaning, decluttering, painting, or minor repairs.

Step 3: Gather All Necessary Paperwork

This includes building approvals, certificates of classification, and any warranties for work done. Remember, as an owner builder, you need to provide full disclosure about the nature of the property.

Step 4: List Your Property

Confident enough to sell it yourself? Well you can! We've done it ourselves and it was a fun process.

You need to go through a registered agency that specialises in owners selling their homes so check out Agent in a Box. They teach you all you need to. know to sell your home.

And the really good part is that you built this home, you know the ins and outs so who better than you to tell the story!

Step 5: Show Your Property

If selling through an agent, you'll follow their usual process of open houses or private viewings for interested buyers. Be sure to fully share your journey of building the home with the agent so they can confidently share the story with prospective buyers.

Step 6: Negotiate and Accept an Offer

Again, if selling through an agent they'll handle the offers and negotiate on your behalf until you reach a price that both you and the buyer are happy with. If selling yourself, this can be daunting but possible!

Step 7: Finalise the Sale

After accepting an offer, it's time to finalise the sale. This usually involves signing a contract of sale, fulfilling any conditions outlined in the contract, and then transferring the property title to the new owner.

Remember, selling an owner built house involves some unique steps. Obtaining a building approval and a certificate of classification is crucial. These documents validate that your home was built according to local building codes and regulations. You might also need to engage a private certifier to ensure everything's up to standard.

Selling an owner built house might seem daunting, but with careful planning, organisation, and a bit of patience, you can successfully pass on your unique property to its new owners.

Good luck!

Challenges and Risks in Selling an Owner Built House

Alright, let's talk about challenges and risks when selling an owner built house. While it can be a rewarding experience to sell a house you've built yourself, it's also important to be aware of the potential pitfalls. Knowledge is power, after all!

One of the main challenges that owner builders face when selling in Queensland relates to no access to warranty insurance. As an owner builder, you're responsible for the work done on your property. That means if a defect pops up after the sale, you might be liable for it.

There's a six-year statutory warranty period in place. This period covers structural defects and non-structural defects for 6 months from the date of practical completion. So, if something goes wrong within this timeframe, the buyer could potentially seek recourse from you.

NOTE: If you followed the traditional path of engaging and having a contract with a registered builder, you'd be protected for any issues during and after the build. This is not the case when you build as an owner builder.

Learn more about the Queensland Home Warranty Scheme by clicking here.

Another challenge is consumer protection. As an owner builder, you need to ensure that you're following all rules and regulations when selling your property. This includes providing full disclosure to the buyer about the nature of the property and any potential issues.

Additionally, pricing your property accurately can be a tricky task. You don't want to undervalue your hard work, but you also need to stay competitive in the market. It's a delicate balance to strike!

Limited exposure can also pose a challenge. Without the backing of a real estate agent, it might be harder to reach potential buyers and negotiate the best deal possible.

Finally, there's the time-consuming process of preparing your home for sale, managing paperwork, and dealing with legalities. This can be particularly daunting if you're going it alone.

In short, while selling an owner built house can be a fulfilling journey, it's not without its challenges and risks. But don't worry, with careful planning, awareness, and perhaps some professional advice, you can navigate these potential pitfalls and successfully sell your unique property.

Tips for Successful Selling of an Owner Built House

Alright, now that we've covered the basics, let's get into some practical tips for successfully selling your owner built house.

Ensure Compliance with Building Standards

As an owner builder, it's essential to ensure that your property complies with all local building codes and regulations. This not only boosts buyer confidence but also helps you avoid potential legal issues down the line.

Provide Thorough Documentation

Prepare all necessary paperwork, including building approvals, certificates of classification, and warranties. This demonstrates transparency and gives potential buyers a clear picture of what they're purchasing.

Market the Unique Aspects of Your Property

You've put a lot of love and hard work into building your home. Make sure to highlight these unique aspects when you or an agent market your property!

Price Your Property Accurately

Research similar properties in your area to ensure your home is competitively priced. If you're unsure, consider hiring a professional valuer.

Consider Professional Help

While selling an owner built house independently is possible, getting help from real estate professionals or legal advisors can make the process smoother and more successful.


Selling an owner built house in Queensland is indeed a possibility, and yes, it's completely legal. However, it requires careful planning, transparency, adherence to building standards, and perhaps a bit of professional help. Whether you're considering becoming an owner builder or selling an owner built property, it's essential to understand the regulations, challenges, and rewards involved.

Remember, every owner builder's journey is unique, just like the homes they build. So, take your time, do your research, and don't be afraid to seek professional advice. After all, you're not just selling a house; you're passing on a piece of your own personal history.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a real estate agent to sell my owner built house?

While it's not mandatory to use a real estate agent, they can provide valuable assistance in pricing your property, attracting potential buyers, and navigating paperwork and negotiations. The agent's fee is what you need to be prepared to accept.

Can I sell my owner built house soon after it's completed?

Yes, you can. However, remember that as the builder, you're responsible for any defects for a certain period (like the six-year statutory warranty period in Queensland), even after the property is sold.

What if my owner built house does not meet all building codes and regulations?

If your house doesn't meet all local building codes and regulations, it could be harder to sell. It might also lead to legal issues down the line. It's advisable to rectify any compliance issues before listing your property for sale.

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