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Property/Water Allocation Transfer Process

A water allocation is an authority to take water, and an entitlement to a share of the available water resource in the catchment. A water allocation has a title separate from a land title and can be bought and sold independently in a similar way to land.

For more detailed information on water allocations and water allocation priority groups please view the understanding water allocations fact sheet.

Water allocation trading may include:

Permanent Transfer – ownership of a water allocation title can be traded, similar to the sale of land title.

Lease – a water allocation can be leased for a defined period of time. A water allocation lease is similar to a lease of land; however, only whole water allocations can be leased.

Subdivision – a water allocation can be subdivided into two or more parts.

Change – the most common change request is to move the allocation to a different location. The location is a zone specified in a resource operation plan. A change may also relate to the purpose or priority of the water allocation.

Amalgamation – two or more allocations with the same attributes can be amalgamated to create a new single allocation.

Further information relating to Water Allocation Trading in Queensland can be located on the Queensland Government website:

Select each of the sections above or from the side navigation to view information regarding SunWater’s procedures/processes for dealing with various types of ‘Water Allocation’ applications.

SunWater’s process varies slightly when:

  • The applicant has a distribution contract with a Distribution Operations Licence (DOL) Holder – details of the DOL Holders and the variation to process can be viewed by selecting Water Boards.
  • The application is for a Property Transfer NOT including a water allocation whereby the infrastructure (pump/meter) that provides for the taking of water may need to be assigned to the buyer – Offtake Assignment.

To reduce our customers’ paper handling and postage costs, and improve turnaround times, SunWater accepts documentation for water allocation transfers in softcopy via e-mail, as an alternative to hardcopy by post. Should you wish to provide us your documents via e-mail, they should be sent as text-readable pdfs to If documents are sent in softcopy, we do not require them to be sent in hardcopy as well.

Should you have any queries in relation to sending documents electronically, please call Customer Support on 13 15 89.