For Buyers

Finance

Prior to beginning your search for your new home, it is vital that you find out what you can afford to spend. Getting pre-approval on your finance is a great place to start. Dealing with a reputable Mortgage Broker takes the stress out of gaining finance. Our friends at Smartline offer loan advice, at no cost to you. Visit their website to arrange an appointment at www.smartline.com.au to arrange an appointment.

It is also important to consider additional costs which may be associated with buying real estate. These are as follows;

  • Building Inspections or Pest Reports
  • Mortgage insurance
  • Stamp Duty (If applicable)
     

Different types of Property

There are several different types of Real Estate that can be purchased, each with their important points which must be considered when considering making an offer.

Strata Properties

A strata property is one where people have both individual ownership of a part of a property (usually a unit, apartment or townhouse), and a shared ownership in the remainder of a property (called Common Property, and includes things like driveways, foyers, gardens and pools). A copy of the strata plan will show you what you will own, plus what areas are considered Common Property.

The management of the Common Property is done through the Strata Company (or Body Corporate), which is appointed by the owners. Their job is to maintain areas like the gardens, pools and driveways, as well as the value of the property.

It is important to remember when buying a strata property, you will automatically become part of the Strata Company, and may have annual fees to cover expense like insurance, gardening and general maintenance of the common areas.  

Established Property

An established property has many appealing features, and can be a more affordable option than building your own home. When purchasing a property, you will own everything on the block of land, and be responsible for the maintenance and insurance. It is important to include these costs when making an offer.

When making an offer on an established property, it make be wise to consider including a building report and pest inspection as a condition of your offer, to ensure the property is structurally sound.

Vacant Land

Buying a block of land is like buying a blank canvas to build your dream home. However, there are some considerations. Firstly, are there service connections already running to the block? If not, when will they be laid? Also, what are the future plans when buying a block of land in a new development? Are there any shops or schools planned for the area in the future?

When buying a vacant block, it is also important to consider any covenants (rules) or encumbrances (other interested parties) which may be on the title.
 

Offer and Acceptance Process

Once you have found the property, it is time to start the offer and acceptance process. Dealing with your real estate agent, they will help you fill in legal paperwork know as ‘Contract for Sale of Land, or Strata Title by Offer and Acceptance’, or more casually known as ‘The Offer’. This paperwork, once completed by the buyer, will be presented to the seller for their approval. They may make a counter offer, which will then be presented back to the buyers. This can go back and forth several times until the price, plus all terms and conditions, are accepted by all parties, both seller and buyer.

There are several important dates on ‘The Offer’.

  • Contract Date - This is when the negotiations have ended and the contract has been agreed upon by all parties
  • Deposit Due Date – the date by which the deposit must be paid
  • Finance Approval Date – The date which official finance approval must be received by
  • Unconditional Date - This is when all conditions on the contract have been met, such as building inspections, pest inspections and finance approval
  • Settlement Date – the date on which the ownership of the property is transferred from the seller to the buyer

Prior to settlement, the buyer and their real estate agent are entitled to visit the property to conduct what is referred to as a final inspection, which is a check of the property to make sure all fixtures and fittings are in good working order.

It is also important to remember if the sellers live in the property; the buyer may not get access to the property until midday the day following settlement.


Settlement Agents/Conveyancing

Conveyancing is the transfer of property ownership from one party to another. This exercise is not just a matter of filling out forms. The law associated with conveyancing is complex. That is why it is best to engage a professional Settlement Agent.  For further information on what a professional Settlement Agent can do for you, chat to Borromei Willis Settlements. Head over to their site at www.bwsettlements.com.au to arrange an appointment.

After Settlement

Once settlement has been completed, it is time to organise the move into your new home! Please don’t forget the following;

  • Change your address at all the important places such as the Bank, Medicare, drivers licence and car registration
  • Forward all mail to new premises
  • Connect utilities to the property, including telephone, electricity and gas. Your settlement agent will make sure that water is connected in your name
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