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Buying or Selling a Property

If you are thinking about buying a property with a water licence or entitlement, read this first.

Things You Need to Do When Buying a New Property

Beware, licences or water shares are not always transferred on the sale of property.

Make sure you, your solicitor or agent applies for an Information Statement.

This will verify details about:

  • Existing licences, conditions and encumbrance.
  • Property location.
  • Licensed volume and use (from a river, dam or bore).
  • Water allocation (if in an irrigation district).
  • Tariffs applicable.
  • Any outstanding debt.

A water licence or allocation may not automatically be transferred with the sale of a property. We strongly suggest that you clarify this with your agent or solicitor and have it noted in the contract of sale before you sign any property purchase documents.

This includes water from:

  • Irrigation channels.
  • Drains.
  • Rivers.
  • Bores.
  • Farm dams.
  • Domestic and stock licences.

A properly completed transfer application form must be submitted to us before a licence or water share will be transferred, regardless of what appears in a sale contract. Without our approval, you will have no legal access to water.

What do I do if I don’t have the authority to take and use water?

You need to follow up with your solicitor or agent and check whether the licence or water entitlement was included in the contract of sale. If it was, then you will need to complete an application form to transfer the entitlement. All current licence holders (the seller) as well as all proposed new licence holders (the buyer) must sign this form.

If the licence wasn’t included in the contract of sale, you should contact us on 1300 139 510. You may be able to obtain a new licence, depending on your location. Otherwise, you will need to secure a volume or entitlement through a temporary or permanent transfer.

All applications need to be submitted to us for assessment. Transfer applications are not always approved.

Things You Need to Do When Selling or Advertising a Property For Sale

Be clear about what you are selling or advertising.

Make sure you, your solicitor or agent applies for an Information Statement.

This will verify details about:

  • Existing licences, conditions and encumbrances.
  • Property location.
  • Licensed volume and use (from a river, dam or bore).
  • Water allocation (if in an irrigation district).
  • Works that are required to be carried out.
  • Tariffs applicable.
  • Any outstanding debt.

Be clear about what you are selling. We strongly suggest that this is clarified with your agent or solicitor and noted in the contract of sale before advertising the property.

This includes water from:

  • Irrigation channels.
  • Drains.
  • Rivers.
  • Bores.
  • Farm dams.
  • Domestic and stock licences.

A properly completed transfer application form must be submitted to us before a licence or water share can be considered for transfer. Without our approval, the new purchaser will have no legal access to water. All current licence holders (the seller) as well as all proposed new licence holders (the buyer) must sign this form.

All applications need to be submitted to us for assessment. Transfer applications are not always approved.

Debt Management and Hardship Procedures

The Debt Management Procedure sets out the rights and responsibilities of Southern Rural Water (SRW) and our customers in relation to the management of outstanding debt.

The purpose of this procedure is to establish transparent, fair and equitable debt management principles for customers to support them in understanding our debt management approach.

Download Debt Management and Hardship Procedures

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WaterMatch - online trading

Watermatch is a free online service, designed to help people trade water.

Once you have registered, you can advertise to buy or sell water.

Depending on the water that you wish to trade, choose from the Groundwater, Surface Water (rivers and creeks) and Irrigation District forum.

Select a new topic to create your ad. Your ad can be to buy or sell water, and must describe the source of your water, quantity of water you want to buy or sell, how long you want to trade for and your contact details. If you are happy to put a buying or selling price, this can be included here too.

If you want to respond to an ad, you can use the email link or contact the advertiser direct.

It is an online trading forum, and can also be used by people who are not on the internet, with help from our staff.

Watermatch allows you to register your interest in either buying or selling water in southern Victoria.

  • the Macalister, Werribee and Bacchus Marsh Irrigation District
  • Groundwater systems in southern Victoria
  • Rivers and creek systems in southern Victoria (other than those managed by Melbourne Water around the Port Phillip region).

Who can use it?
Anyone can use watermatch. You may be an existing licence holder who wants to sell water, or buy more water.

You may not currently have a licence, but you want to buy water in the region.

How does it work?

  • click here to enter Watermatch
  • register as a user (a very simple process)
  • go to the system or district you are interested in and check current entries
  • add in any entry for any water you want to sell or buy

What information should I include in my ad?

  • If you are wanting to buy or sell
  • your name
  • phone number
  • name of river, creek, groundwater management area or irrigation district
  • how much water is to be traded
  • If the trade is temporary or permanent
  • term of the trade (Maximum term is 5 years)

Things you need to know
We are always looking for ways to improve our customer service. If you would like to provide feedack or suggested improvements please click here.

it's important to note that Southern Rural Water is not acting, and will not act, as a water broker.

We cannot advise you on price of water or match you individually with a buyer/seller.

Buyers and sellers still need to go through our normal application process.

Trading applications must be submitted to Southern Rural Water and approval granted before water is taken. A water transfer application form can be downloaded from our application page.

If you want to trade upstream, please speak with one of our Assessment Officers prior to submitting an application.

To check if a buyer or seller can trade with you, call us on 1300 139 510 and ask to speak to an Assessment Officer.

Not a water broker

It's important to note that Southern Rural Water is not acting, and will not act, as a water broker.

We cannot advise you on price of water or match you individually with a buyer/seller.

Buyers and sellers still need to go through our normal application process.

Click here to download our Fact Sheet

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