Legal Insights

Developers and Homes for Homes (Victoria) – how you can be involved

By Adam Jaques

• 22 April 2020 • 5 min read

Homes for Homes is an independent not-for-profit company established to generate new funding to build social and affordable housing by raising funds through voluntary donations on property transactions. In our experience, developers are increasingly keen to have Homes for Homes involved in their projects, but are unsure of how it works. Here are some key points that developers should know to help make Homes for Homes benefit both their project and the affordable housing crisis.

Homes for Homes offers a specific model and documentation for developers. The following steps occur in order for a donation to reach Homes for Homes:

Developer Participation Form

Victorian developer enters into a Project/Development Participation Form with Homes for Homes. The commercial terms are negotiable, but generally:

  • 0.1% of contract price of each lot sold is donated to Homes for Homes;
  • Donation is made either at time of settlement or after; and
  • Homes for Homes caveat is not registered until after settlement and transfer to purchaser.

Marketing material

The developer is encouraged to include Homes for Homes information in their project marketing materials to bring awareness to potential purchasers of the Homes for Homes donations being made through their own purchase.

Special Conditions

The developer will include special conditions, and a deed poll by the purchaser in favour of Homes for Homes into the master contract of sale for the project. At the time of signing the contract, the purchaser also signs a Homes for Homes Deed Poll which allows Homes for Homes to lodge a caveat on the title.

Deed Poll

The caveat acts as a prompt to sellers to contact Homes for Homes to donate 0.1% of the sale price to Homes for Homes when they sell their property in the future. The caveat can be removed at any time in the future at no cost by contacting Homes for Homes.

When the purchaser executes the deed poll, the developer will need to provide a copy of each executed deed poll to Homes for Homes. If the developer elects to donate 0.1% of the sale price, Homes for Homes will provide a tax deductible donation receipt to the developer. After settlement reporting is complete, this concludes the developer’s involvement.

Settlement

There does not need to be a caveat placed on the parent titles for the development meaning the developer has the flexibility to decide when to donate and how much to donate. The developer may elect to make a donation at the time of settlement (via a disbursement on the statement of adjustments and directly via PEXA) or, alternatively, at any time post- settlement. Post settlement caveat lodgement removes Homes for Homes involvement in the settlements between the developer and its purchasers.

Caveat lodged by Homes for Homes on individual lots after settlement

Homes for Homes will place a caveat over the purchaser’s individual lot titles after settlement. The caveat is set up so that it will remain on the purchaser’s title until the purchaser (or any subsequent purchaser) requests the caveat be removed by Homes for Homes.

Homes for Homes will want settlement reporting assistance from developers so they are aware of what lots they are entitled to lodge caveats over after settlement.

Homes for Homes - FAQs for Developers

How will Homes for Homes deal with electronic conveyancing (PEXA or Simpli)?

Homes for Homes will not be required to be a participant to any electronic settlement involving the developer because Homes for Homes’ caveat is lodged after the transfer to the purchaser, Homes for Homes will then be a party to any future settlement for the affected lots as caveator.

How will Homes for Homes receive donations?

In accordance with the Donation Deed, donations can be made at the time of settlement or post-settlement, either individually or in a bulk donation calculated on the total sales of each stage of the development. On subsequent transactions the purchaser and subsequent owners may make donations or opt-out.

Purchaser & financier concerns

Because the caveat will be placed on the purchaser’s title post-settlement, the developer is unlikely to be involved with any purchaser’s financier’s concerns or objections. Despite this, Homes for Homes has the support of the major 4 banks and has various Homes for Homes operational contacts within certain banks to deal with financier concerns and queries. In addition to this, Homes for Homes is also educating the legal sector (i.e. PEXA, SAI Global, Global X and AIC) and the general public (via a marketing and education plan) to limit the concerns or objections.

Timing

If the developer decides to donate, it should consider timing. I.e. whether the donation is made after a bulk settlement of each stage or whether a disbursement is allocated within the statement of adjustments for each lot sold.

Are Special Conditions required?

Yes. Special conditions will need to be included in the contract disclosing the Homes for Homes agreement.

The deed poll incorporated into the contract and entered into by the purchaser at the time of signing the contract should limit the special conditions required in the contract.

Privacy and disclosure

The deed poll is entered into by the purchaser when they execute the contract of sale. The Deed Poll is a mechanism for the purchaser to register the property with Homes for Homes for its future use in lodging the caveat over the property and after settlement. The purchaser can remove the caveat at any time by contacting Homes for Homes.

The developer may wish to get purchasers to confirm in the contract that the developer can advise Homes for Homes when settlement has taken place.

By Adam Jaques

  • Share

Related articles

Online Access