Buying a Business premises


Buying (rather than leasing) a business premises is like buying a house — you’ll need to do your property inspection, sign documents, organise finance and insure the premises etc. You’ll also need to make sure it’s in the correct business zone, is a safe workplace and is built and modified with the correct planning and building permits.


Advantages of buying a premises over leasing are if:

  • the property will become a major business asset, and you can grow the business by borrowing against your equity in it
  • you enjoy the benefits of capital growth and security of tenure
  • you want no landlord so you control how the property is developed
  • you want to claim depreciation of fixtures and fittings
  • you want to use the asset as part of your superannuation scheme.


With the freedom of owning the premises and not having a landlord, the disadvantages are that:

  • the premises fit out and set up costs are usually higher than leasing premises
  • your ability to borrow money is subject to changes in interest rates
  • no landlord means you take full responsibility for expenses including rates and repairs
  • banks usually want a personal guarantee which puts assets at risk e.g. family home
  • if you have to relocate, selling the premises could be difficult

Check the planning and building permits, and zoning. When you’re considering a property to buy you should check the planning zones and overlays. Learn more about how to do this by reading Permits, zoning and approval.

Where to get a property title

Property titles provide the really essential information. Buyers, sellers and developers use property certificates to verify things like:

  • ownership,
  • land and building dimensions,
  • zoning,
  • heritage listing,
  • and permits issued by the local council.

You can order property titles from the SA government land titles office.

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