The Treasurer has announced changes to Australia’s foreign investment review framework, effective from 10.30pm AEDT on Sunday 29 March 2020, relating to monetary thresholds and timeframes for reviewing applications. Details are available in our recent News article, including Q&A. Material on the FIRB website is being updated to capture these changes. In the meantime, all material on this website, including guidance notes, should be read in light of the Treasurer’s announcement.

Redevelopments

Foreign persons (temporary residents and foreign non-residents) generally need to apply and receive foreign investment approval before purchasing established residential dwellings for redevelopment.

Foreign persons will normally be allowed to purchase an established dwelling for redevelopment in Australia, provided the redevelopment genuinely increases the housing stock. An increase in Australia’s housing stock is generally taken to mean that at least one additional dwelling will be created.

 Such proposals are normally approved subject to conditions that:

  • The existing dwelling(s) must remain vacant prior to demolition and redevelopment;
  • The existing dwelling(s) is demolished and construction of the new dwelling is completed within four years of the date of approval; and
  • Evidence of completed of the dwellings is submitted within 30 days of being received by the applicant. This could include a final occupancy or builder’s completion certification.

Foreign persons will generally not be given approval to purchase an established dwelling to redevelop into a single new dwelling.

Guidance