Buying A Home

Relation to the sale of residential properties

Where Real Estate Agents exchange Contracts there is a "cooling off period". The minimum cooling off period is five (5) business days, however, this can be extended by agreement between the parties. If during the cooling off period the purchaser withdraws from the Contract, the purchaser forfeits an amount equivalent to .25% of the purchase price. The purpose of the five (5) day cooling off period is to generally enable the purchaser:- [a] To seek the advice of a Solicitor on the contents of the Contract. [b] To ensure that finance is formally approved. [c] To obtain any expert reports desired. Where you do not sign the Contract with the agent and the agent does not affect an exchange of Contracts then the cooling off period may be waived. The Contract for Sale becomes immediately binding on you.

After you have selected your home we recommend you obtain certain expert reports. We recommend:-

[a] A Pest Report – a pest report is carried out by a qualified pest controller to investigate any present or past infestation by pests.
[b] A Building Report – a qualified building inspector or builder carries out a full inspection of the premises and reports as to its state of repair.
[c] Engineering Reports – these are normally obtained where a Building Report makes mention of structural damage to the property.
[d] Survey Report – this report is obtained to confirm that the structures upon the property being purchased sit wholly within the block. It will also confirm whether any structures upon adjoining properties encroach upon the property that you are proposing to purchase.
[e] Building Certificate – this is a Certificate obtained from the local council to confirm that council will not make any “upgrade or demolition orders” in relation to any structures upon the property. To obtain a Building Certificate, a survey must be provided to council.

It is a matter for yourself as to whether or not you obtain all or any of the above reports

Where you are purchasing vacant land it is imperative that you satisfy yourself prior to the exchange of Contracts that you can develop the land. The zoning of the property will be contained in the Section 10.7(2) Certificate in the Contract for Sale. There will be other information in this Certificate that will be of assistance.

The Contract for Sale will disclose any covenants or restrictions as to user that can often govern the type of building that might be erected on the property including the size, the materials from which it is constructed and even colours.

Taxation implications on your purchase may involve income tax and/or capital gains tax. You should give consideration to your tax position.

Before proceeding to an exchange of Contracts you should seek the advice of an accountant so as to be fully aware of all of the implications of the purchase in relation to all taxation matters.

You purchase the property as it is in its present state of repair and condition. It is essential that before you allow the contract to become binding, you have satisfied yourself in relation to contents of the Contract, your finance and the quality of the property.

During the period from exchange to settlement, we will carry liaise with mortgagees, answer mortgagee’s requisitions, raise requisitions with Vendors, attend to stamping of documents, obtain surveys if required, make statutory enquiries, Registrar General’s searches and any other necessary documentation. During this period of time, you will be called upon to sign such documents as are necessary to complete the conveyancing transaction.

The usual time to complete a transaction is six (6) weeks. The time for completion can be shorter or longer. Some matters are delayed beyond the agreed completion date for various reasons. If there is any difficulty with the results of searches obtained on your behalf, then this will be brought to your attention immediately. Your rights pursuant to the Contract for Sale will at that stage be discussed.

When the exchange of Contracts takes place usually a 10% deposit is paid. We point out that it is only by agreement that a deposit less than 10% can be paid.

If you are selling your own home at the same time as purchasing another property, it may well be that you are unable to fund the full 10%. There are a number of options available to you in these circumstances. Firstly, you could borrow the funds. Secondly, we can request the Purchaser’s Solicitor on your sale to release the deposit to you. Purchasers and their Solicitors often agree to this, but usually only on the basis that the deposit which is released will only be used as a deposit and not for any other purpose. A third alternative is to use a Deposit Bond. This is where a financial institution such as a Bank or a Building Society provides a bond in lieu of the deposit.

By law we are governed by the Legal Profession Uniform Law (NSW). This Act provides that we cannot take action for the recovery of legal costs until thirty (30) days after a Bill of Costs has been given to you. We do point out, however, that at the expiration of this thirty (30) day period, interest pursuant to the Act will apply. We would also point out that where an agreement has been reached in respect of costs and you have been provided with a quotation, this right will not necessarily be available to you. We have provided you with a quotation. That quotation indicates when payment is required. We note that that quotation has been accepted by you.

If you consider that any charges are unreasonable, then you have a right to have your Bill assessed by an Assessor as appointed by the Supreme Court. However, we point out that where you have accepted our quotation this in effect constitutes an agreement as to costs and this right may not necessarily be available to you.

Stamp duty must be paid within a period of three (3) months from the date of exchange.

If you are eligible for the First Home Owners Grant (FHOG), we will complete with you forms to obtain the stamp duty exemption. So far as the $7,000.00 grant is concerned, in most instances your bank will have you complete the appropriate forms to have the $7,000.00 made available on completion. Please note that where we are requested to obtain the $7,000.00 grant, this cannot be made available on completion and can only be paid after the registration of the Transfer at Land and Property Information.

Blunden and Montgomery are registered for electronic settlements. Through the electronic settlement process stamp duty will be paid on settlement. Many transactions will have to be completed electronically from 1 July 2018 and from 1 July 2019 all transactions must be completed electronically.

Prior to settlement taking place, it is recommended that you undertake an inspection of the property to confirm that the property has not been damaged between exchange and settlement. This inspection should be arranged through your Real Estate Agent.

Upon settlement we, as your Solicitors, carry out the adjustment of all the necessary figures including all rates and taxes assessed on the land. Where rates had been paid by the Vendor, an adjustment will be made in the Vendor’s favour for your proportion of the rates for the balance of the rate year