Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of State Registration?
Owning a State Registered place means that you are a custodian of a place that is important to the history and development of Western Australia. As part of the registration process, you are provided with a full history of your property and its role in the development of this State.
State Registration can be an important marketing advantage if you operate a business from your property. A number of businesses, particularly in the tourism and hospitality sector, successfully use State Registration as a point-of-difference between themselves and their competitors.
Entry in the State Register also ensures that you have access to a range of services and information provided by the State Heritage Office.
Heritage Officers in the Development and Incentives Branch can provide practical advice and feedback on any proposed changes to your property. Information is also available on maintaining your heritage property.
Private owners are also eligible to apply for grants through the Heritage Council’s Heritage Grants Program, which provides financial assistance to undertake conservation work, such as structural repairs. Grants are available through an annual competitive program.
Assistance is also available through the Heritage Loan Subsidy Scheme, which offers a subsidy on the interest rate on loans for conservation work in particpating local government areas.
Our Grants Administrator can also provide information on a range of incentives provided by Federal, State and local governments, including development bonuses, relaxation of building controls, and relief from taxes and charges.
Further information on incentives and case studies on the value of conserving heritage place can be found in Conservation & Development.
If my place becomes State Registered, can I still carry out maintenance and other work?
Yes. Maintaining your property to a good standard will ensure it maintains its value.
Entry in the State Register does not mean a place cannot be changed to meet contemporary needs or adapted for new use. The State Heritage Office encourages sensitive development and new compatible uses of heritage places because this is the best way of ensuring their future.
If development or change to a State Registered place is proposed, it is referred to the Heritage Council for advice, usually by the responsible local government.
In most cases, the State Heritage Office, under authority from the Heritage Council, will deal with the referral. Major developments are referred to the Heritage Council.
The Heritage Council needs to provide advice on proposed works to ensure they are done with care and sensitivity to the heritage significance of the place.
Owners of heritage places are encouraged to contact the State Heritage Office to discuss any changes they are considering.
Does the State Heritage Office or the Heritage Council have ownership rights over State Registered Places?
No. A State Registered place remains the sole property of the owner(s) and all normal private property rights apply.
Do I have to open my State Registered Place to the public?
No. Your place remains your private property and there is no requirement for a State Registered place to be open to the general public.
Will the value of my property be affected by registration?
A number of studies around Australia and overseas have found that generally heritage listing has no negative impact on property values. A number of studies have found that heritage listing can improve a property’s value, particularly in areas that have a high concentration of heritage places.
Is it difficult to insure State Registered places?
Generally, you are able to insure any place that is in sound condition and occupied. However some insurance companies have a policy of not insuring heritage listed buildings. Contact your insurance company or broker for more information. The State Heritage Office is happy to provide information to your insurance company or broker on the implications of State heritage listing.
Like all property owners, heritage-property owners should make sure they have adequate coverage. The common insurance industry standard of replacing materials that are damaged or partially lost on a like-for-like basis is also good heritage conservation practice
Is the land on which the place is located also State Registered?
Yes. State Registration covers the land, all structures on it and any material below it. The whole place is generally considered to have heritage significance. State Registration is rarely limited to the building footprint or a structure.
Can I subdivide the registered area?
Subdivisions of a registered area (known as a curtilage) can occur as long as the heritage values and settings of the place are respected. The Heritage Council has supported many subdivisions. Contact the State Heritage Office for more information.
What happens if I don’t support State Registration?
Once the State Heritage Office completes the stakeholder consultation process, the Heritage Council considers all comments received when deciding if a place is of State significance. It is the Heritage Council’s responsibility to recommend places that meet the level for State Registration to the Minister, even if the stakeholders do not support registration.
The Minister makes the final decision about State Registration and will take into account all stakeholder comments, including any objections.
Can places be State Registered without the owner’s agreement?
Yes. While the Minister will consider the owner’s views, if the Minister considers the place is sufficiently important then the place can be entered in the State Register without the owner’s agreement.