Buying a home is one of the biggest and most important purchases you will ever make. The purchase of a home involves a number of complex decisions. Do not be hurried. Take time to shop around. Appoint a lawyer who understands your needs and situation and who will negotiate the best possible outcome for you.
Buying a property can affect other matters, such as your taxation position or your will. It may also have implications for any family law issues you have. If you are buying an investment property you need to know your rights and obligations as a landlord, how negative gearing may assist you, and the implications of GST.
Most properties are sold by estate agents on behalf of the vendor (the seller). If you are a potential buyer, contact estate agents in the area where you wish to buy a property. The agents will then arrange inspections of properties. Estate agents are legally required to communicate any offer you make to the vendor. They must also provide you with a copy of the vendor’s statement prior to receiving an offer on a property. The agent has a responsibility to act ethically in their dealings with you; however, the agent’s contractual responsibility is to the vendor.
If you intend to purchase a property at auction, obtain all relevant documentation from the selling agent. Have your lawyer check the documentation and answer your queries before the auction day. If you buy at the auction or within three days of the auction, you lose the right to a cooling-off period.
Although you may be able to take the benefit of any insurance contract the vendor has, it is essential you make independent arrangements to insure both the property and any fittings as soon as the contract has been signed. A mortgage lender will require a formal insurance policy to be produced by settlement day.