Buying, Moving and Selling

Buying, Moving and Selling

Do you know what you need to do when you buy, sell or move into a new property? This section tells you everything you need to know.


When you buy a property, your conveyancer is required to tell you:

  • Current charges
  • Any balance outstanding (including water use charges as a result of the special meter reading)
  • Information on future charges that may apply
  • Details of any encumbrances that are on the property. Encumbrances include easements over part of your property.

If you are a conveyancer, please contact us to get this information.

Do I need to connect to water and sewerage?

In most cases, the property is already connected, unless:

  • You're building a brand new home. Check that your builder has applied for water and sewerage connection on your behalf. If your contract with your builder doesn't include a water and sewerage connection, you will need to apply via the the Connection Application form.
  • You're moving into a newly built home. If there is a connection, but no water meter on the property, you will need to apply for a meter via the Connection Application form. If there is a meter, and no water supply, check the meter is in the 'on' position. If there is still no supply, call our Customer Service Centre for help.

Buyer's Checklist

Before you buy, make sure you are informed. These checklists of questions will help you understand the connections on your property.

  1. Does the property have a water meter? Where is it located?
    If a water meter is installed, will it need to be relocated to fit in with your plans? If relocation is required, a fee will be payable. Please read the current fees for more information. You can find out more about relocating your meter here.
  2. Is your water meter accessible? Water meters must be kept free of obstructions so they can be read, maintained and periodically replaced. If the meter is partially buried or encased in concrete, you have to remove the obstruction or the meter may be relocated at your cost.
  3. Is the property located in a dual water supply development? Prior to sale, each property must be checked to ensure no cross connection exists between the drinking water and recycled water supplies. Check with the Office of The Technical Regulator (OTR) that this audit has taken place. Also check any required alterations to plumbing work have been fixed before you buy the property.
  4. Is the water connection for the property located away from the property? If so, the property will have a special type of connection agreement. It's important to note you are responsible for the maintenance and replacement of the water pipe between the meter and the property if repairs are required.
  1. Does the property have a sewerage connection? Where is it located? A sewerage connection is a small steel plate usually on the footpath or outside the boundary of your home. It's a good idea to know where it is in case a plumber requires access.

    Some properties cannot be connected to SA Water infrastructure because they sit outside a serviceable area. For example, some properties use septic systems for sewerage.
  2. What is the condition of the drains connected to the sewerage connection? Cracked or leaking drains can allow tree roots to enter, resulting in drain blockages. Use a licensed plumber to inspect and report on the plumbing, sanitary drainage system and water pipes before you buy.
  3. Is there an external overflow point on the property? In the event of a blockage, an overflow relief gully may be required. This will allow the discharge to flow from the dwelling.
  1. Are there any encumbrances, agreements or authorisations on the property that must be addressed before you can buy the property? Ask your conveyancer for this information.
  2. Does the property have a water or sewer easement? This may impact on any building or additions you plan to undertake. Ask your real estate agent for this information.


When you sell a property, your conveyancer will arrange for a special reading of the water meter. As a part of the property settlement, your conveyancer adjusts water use based on the daily average for the property between our last meter reading and your settlement date. The water usage charge will be listed on the next bill we send to you when we next read your meter. As the new owner, this charge is now your responsibility.

The vendor is responsible for rates and charges up to and including the date of settlement. After settlement the buyer becomes responsible.

Note that a fee applies for special meter readings. You can view our fees and charges here.

Please Contact Us if you need to make your own arrangements for a special meter reading.

Do I need to organise disconnection of my water and sewerage?

No, unless the property is being demolished. If so, please refer to our fees and charges.

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