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FAQ's for Buying a Property

How much holding deposit will I need to pay to the agency?

A property holding deposit amount can vary but it's usually $1000.00. The deposit is generally non-refundable so, even if you revoke your offer during the cooling-off period, the seller may charge you a penalty fee of up to 0.25% of the purchase price which will be taken from the deposit paid.

What are the costs of buying a property?

  • A Deposit - usually 5-20% of the home’s overall cost
  • Stamp Duty
  • Lenders mortgage insurance if you borrow more than 80% of the property purchase price 
  • Building insurance 
  • Legal fees for lawyers or conveyancers
  • Building, pest and strata inspections 
  • Council rates and strata fees 
  • Moving costs 

 Will I have to pay stamp duty?

If you are buying an investment property or home to live in, you will need to know about transfer duty—all transfers of land and property are liable to transfer duty (formally known as stamp duty). Find current transfer duty rates on the government website

Once I sign a contract how long do I have to get a building & pest inspection done?

Depending on your contract terms but usually a standard 30 day control will allow you 14 days after the contract date to organise a building and pest inspection. If you need more information for companies that conduct this type of service ask us and we can recommend a local company to you.

How do I put in an offer on a property?

When you would like to make an offer on a home you will need to submit that offer in writing to the agent. This will then be presented to the seller and if accepted will then be put into a legally binding form “A contract of Sale” for both parties to sign.

How can I Book an inspection to view a home for sale

Contact our office via email or call us today on (07) 4401 5077

What happens with the council rates for the property?

In regards to the council rates, upon settlement, the council will finalise any costing of prior rates to the previous vendor and start the new rates period as per the settlement date. The council is notified by your solicitor via the titles office.

Do I need to appoint a Solicitor to buy a property?

Once you sign a contract, it takes some time for the sale of the property to be finished. The process that happens after the contract is signed is called conveyancing. Conveyancing involves all steps necessary to ensure that the registration of the land is in the name of the buyer at the government's land title office. During the conveyance period, searches are done to ensure that the property is owned by the seller and not affected by things such as proposed reclaiming of land, contaminated land, easements or other government requirements.

You may do your own conveyancing or have it done for you. You should seek legal advice even if you plan to do your own conveyancing or preferably speak to a conveyancing lawyer.

What is the difference between Joint tenants and tenants in common?

When you own a property as a joint tenant, you and the other tenants own the property together. It is not divided into shares; you each own the whole property together. If you own property as a joint tenant, you cannot leave that property in your will. When a joint tenant dies, their ownership in the property automatically passes to the surviving joint tenants. If you are the only surviving joint tenant, you will be the sole owner of the property. If you want to end a joint tenancy, you should get legal advice.

If you own property as a ‘tenant in common’, you own a defined share of the property. This might be an equal share with the other owners or a defined percentage (e.g. 50% each or 25% and 75%). As a tenant in common, you can transfer your share to someone else, so you can leave your share in the property in your will.

What is unconditional?

When purchasing property, buyers have the opportunity to state the terms that they wish to include on the contract, the contract is “unconditional” when all terms of the offer have been satisfied and the sale will be going ahead.

What is the settlement?

The settlement is the closing or the final step in executing a real estate transaction. The closing date is set during the negotiation phase and is usually several weeks/months after the offer is formally accepted. On the closing date, the ownership of the property is transferred to the buyer.

Do I need a pest inspection?

You don’t need a pest inspection, but it is highly recommended that you get one to ensure the property you are buying has no major issues or infestations as this could save you a lot of money in the future.

Who do I speak to about finance?

If you haven't got finance yet contacting a mortgage broker or the banks to get a mortgage is urgent, as getting finance can take time and finance problems are the most common reason for a property sale falling through. Ask us and we can recommend a mortgage broker to you.

What is the cooling off period?

A cooling-off period of 5 days applies to contracts for the sale of residential property. It will start the day the buyer receives a copy of the contract (signed by both parties).

Please note:

  • For contracts that arrive on a weekend or a public holiday, the cooling-off period starts on the next business day.
  • The cooling-off period still begins if a representative takes it on the buyer’s behalf.
  • If there’s a dispute, the seller (or their agent) must prove when they delivered the contract.

The cooling-off period ends at 5pm on the final (5th) day of the cooling-off period. After this, the buyer must follow through on the contract and buy the property. This remains subject to the terms of the contract.

The cooling-off period also DOESN’T apply if the buyer is:

  • a publicly listed corporation (or their subsidiary)
  • the State or a statutory body
  • buying at least 3 lots at the same time (whether or not in the same contract).

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