Some people will tell you that buying real estate is the most stressful thing they’ve done, but it doesn’t have to be! Our goal is to make the legalities of your new purchase a seamless and harmonious experience so you can focus on the more important parts of the purchase.
Before you start looking:
It’s important to know what you can afford and how much you need to borrow before starting to look at potential properties to purchase. Now is the time to approach a reputable Broker or Banker to assist with your mortgage and budget options.
Details of Stamp Duty implications are available at http://osr.nsw.gov.au/buying-or-selling-property. You can also find details of current exemptions and discounts of stamp duty which, if you are eligible, we can assist you to apply for once you have entered into contracts.
Start to find what you’re looking for:
Once you have a budget in mind, start actively approaching local real estate agents to discuss what type of property you are looking for so you can link up to their email list and be notified as soon as appropriate properties hit the market. When you have found a property you want to make an offer on, give us a call. We will provide you with a no obligation FREE CONTRACT REVIEW so we can discuss the finer points of the contract with you so there are no surprises before it’s too late.
Making an offer and exchange of contracts:
If the property is not going to auction, now is the time to finalise your offer through the real estate agent, assuming there are no ‘deal breakers’ in the contract. This process is called ‘offer and acceptance’. The process of ‘exchanging’ contracts and the payment of the deposit is what makes the offer binding. You sign one version of the contract and the vendor (seller) signs a ‘counter-part’ identical contract. Contracts are then ‘exchanged’ to either party and dated. Contracts in New South Wales can be ‘exchanged’ in one of two ways:
- With a Cooling-Off Period. All contracts for residential property in New South Wales come with a five business day cooling-off period for the benefit of the purchaser (unless the property is being sold at auction where there is automatically no cooling-off period). This is designed to protect a purchaser from being ‘gazumped’ by another purchaser who makes a higher offer before you are able to commit to the purchase. You then use the 5 business days to make appropriate enquiries about the property eg building, pest or strata reports (which we can arrange on your behalf), finalise your finance arrangements and be comfortable with the contract terms. If you decide to pull out during the cooling-off period you will forfeit 0.25% of the purchase price.
- With No Cooling-Off Period. As mentioned above if the property is sold at auction there is automatically no cooling-off period. There is a second scenario where the vendor can insist on you entering into contracts with no Cooling-Off period. In this scenario we will need to sign what’s called a Section 66W Certificate. This Certificate details that your conveyancer has explained the contract to you and that you are aware that there will be no cooling-off period in the contract.
Prior to exchanging contracts with no cooling-off period or bidding at auction you should have the contract checked over by our office and any appropriate changes made, arrange any property inspections and arrange for formal loan approval to be in place if you are borrowing funds for the purchase.
After Unconditional Exchange of Contracts or After The Cooling-Off Period Expires:
There are a few formalities which our office takes care of during the process. If you are borrowing funds for the purchase you will need to make arrangements to sign your loan documents with your broker or banker as soon as the loan documents have been prepared by your lender. This is to avoid any last minute hiccups with your lender if the documents haven’t been prepared correctly or not signed accurately.
You are entitled to undertake a final inspection of the property in the lead up to settlement. This is to ensure that the property is in relatively the same condition as when you exchanged contracts.
In the lead up to settlement we will also provide you with a detailed beak-down of the settlement adjustments and costs. This will note any shortfall which your bank is not providing that you will be required to provide for settlement to occur. Our office makes use of a Trust Account which means that if you need to contribute any funds for settlement, you can simply make one lump sum payment into Trust Account so you don’t need to worry about drawing multiple cheques in the lead up to settlement.
On the day of settlement:
Once you have carried out your final inspection and are happy to proceed with settlement, we take care of all the formalities on the day in terms of handing over the settlement funds and receiving the title deeds. If you are borrowing funds for your purchase, your mortgagee will typically take care of lodging all the title transfer documents, otherwise our office will take care of this process.
All you need to do is collect the keys!