Land valuation guide

Land value refers to the monetary value of the land only and does not include the value of the home or other structures on the land. Land value is used by local councils and the State Government to calculate rates and taxes. Property NSW oversees the management of the valuation system on behalf of the Valuer General.


Valuations undertaken by Property NSW on behalf of the Valuer General, for rating and taxing purposes are made under the Valuation of Land Act 1916. Prior to this act land valuation was relatively inconsistent. Land valuers could be appointed under under the Real Property Act 1862 or be employed by local councils or by a valuation unit in the State Land Tax Office. Many land valuations made by these newer agencies were inconsistent and inequitable and by 1916 there was a desire to reduce the overlapping and duplication of land valuation work by appointing a single authority.

The Valuation of Land Act 1916 provided for the appointment of a Valuer General and for the establishment of the Department of Valuer General to bring uniformity to valuation activity. The valuations to be determined would become the basis of rating, stamp duties, death duties and land resumption.

More historical information on Valuation can be found in our catalogue under Agency 985 (Land Valuation Branch / Land Valuers Branch / Valuation Branch).

Select list of record series

Valuer General

NRS-14466 Valuation Cards, 1916-1927

  • [13/7443-934]

These cards provide information on the valuation of properties in the Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong urban areas and many other urban areas throughout the State.


  • [13/7563-7549] Fiche 2355-2475
  • [13/7550-7557] Fiche 2505-2577

NRS-14465 Valuation rolls, c.1928+

Information contained in these rolls includes owner's name, address and occupation; lessee's name; address of property to be valued; nature of improvements; lot; area; value and remarks.

This series covers most areas of New South Wales. The rolls are arranged by valuation district and within that by wards or ridings and then alphabetically by street.

Item list

NRS-14467 Field books relating to property valuations (and cancelled Field book entries), c.1920-1978

[11/12011-13994, 6/12450-12455, 10/41660-41714, 10/41312-41330, 6/11171-11429]

NRS-16411 Land and Property Valuation Files, 1942-1980

This series contains files relating to the valuation of railway land, property and residences. They include applications by employees (and their position in the railways) to purchase land, build or extend residences and requests for financial assistance.

Local Government - Rate and valuation books

We hold rate and valuation books for some councils. These are listed in our catalogue using the terms "rate" and "valuation".

The majority of council records still reside with the creating or successor council. Researchers will need to contact the council concerned to access to these records. Check with staff before visiting as some records may be held at Regional Archives Centres.

Land Appeal Court

NRS-7921 Register of appeal cases (Court of Appeals under the Crown Lands Act of 1884), 1885-1890

  • [9/739]

NRS-7923 Registers of cases heard by the Land (Appeal) Court, 1890-1921

  • 3 Mar 1890-29 Jun 1920 [X2268-84]
  • 29 Jun 1920-20 Sep 1921 [3/891 part]

Land and Valuation Court

NRS 7913 Registers of cases heard by the Land and Valuation Court, 14 Feb 1922-4 Dec 1935

  • [3/891 part-892]

NRS 7914 Register of lists of objections against land valuations by Shire and Municipal Councils for hearing in the Land and Valuation Court of New South Wales, 1922-1957

  • [3/890]

NRS 7916 Register of Valuer General's lists, c.1944-1963

  • [3/893]

Further reading

Joy N. Hughes (ed.). Local government - local history: a guide to N.S.W. local government minute books and rate records, Royal Australian Historical Society. 1990


State records, including council records are open to public access after 20 years. Individual councils can make access directions to open some records before they are 20 years of age, or to close some records to public access for longer than 20 years. The Register of Access Directions provides details of access directions that have been made by individual councils.

WSRC Volunteer shoot

Accessing the records guide

State records are open to public access after 20 years unless the record is subject to an early access authorisation or a closed to public access direction

Staff at State Records, Kingswood NSW

Register of access directions

This register lists access directions to State records under the State Records Act 1998

Photograph of street scene. Children and women stand outside or at the door of a row of small cottages.

House & property guide

Historical house and property research

Primary application packets guide

The Real Property Act, 1862 established a system whereby owners could convert land granted prior to 1863 to Real Property Act title. This is done by what is called a Primary Application

Local history guide

Resources in our collection to help local historians trace the history of a place

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Local government research guide

The first local councils in NSW were incorporated in 184, with 29 District Councils established