Guide for Sellers | Conveyancing Lawyers |

Guide for Sellers

Buying or selling residential property will be one of the most important financial transactions you make.  To be confident in your decision, contact us now to take advantage of our FREE pre-signing Contract advice now Townsville conveyancing lawyers

The Contract

When a buyer has expressed interest in purchasing property, the real estate agent will prepare a standard Contract for the buyer to sign.  If the seller is agreeable with the terms of the Contract as well as the purchase price, they will then sign the document.

It is important that you always seek legal advice before you sign the Contract to ensure that it meets your needs.  The real estate agent will then send us a copy of the Contract once it has been signed by all parties.

Cooling off period

All residential property sales in Queensland are covered by a statutory cooling off period.  The cooling off period runs for five business days commencing on the date the buyer or their lawyer receiving a copy of the Contract signed by all parties.

If the buyer decides not to proceed with the purchase, they may terminate the Contract by giving the seller notice in writing within the specified time frames.  The buyer would then need to pay the seller a termination penalty of 0.25% of the purchase price.

Finance & Building Inspections

Most Contracts will be subject to the buyer obtaining finance approval and/or satisfactory building and pest inspections by the dates nominated under the Contract.  We will keep you updated in relation to the finance and building and pest inspection conditions.

Once the buyer has received satisfactory finance approval and/or building and pest inspections, the Contract will be deemed ‘unconditional’ (meaning that the buyer must proceed to settlement and cannot terminate the Contract ).

Mortgage

If you have a mortgage over the property, ensure you contact your bank and tell them you are selling and that we are acting for you.

You will need to sign a discharge authority for each mortgage to request the bank to prepare a release of each mortgage.  Tell us once you have done this so we can liaise with your bank to arrange settlement.

Pool Safety Certificate

Sellers of properties with a pool must provide a buyer with a swimming pool safety certificate prior to settlement.

Alternatively, if the seller does not provide a certificate, the seller must issue the buyer with a notice of no pool safety certificate—form 36 before entering into the contract of sale and before settlement.

This form advises the buyer that they have 90 days from settlement to obtain the certificate from a licensed pool safety inspector. Under this option, the buyer is liable for any costs associated with achieving compliance, unless otherwise negotiated as part of the contract.

If there is still no pool safety certificate in effect before settlement and the seller has already given the Notice of no pool safety certificate—Form 36 to the buyer, then they do not need to give the buyer a new form unless the information required by the form changes between contract and settlement. The seller does however need to give the Notice of no pool safety certificate—Form 36 to the department.

Smoke Alarms

Under the Contract of Sale the seller must disclose whether a compliant smoke alarm is installed in the property. If a complaint smoke alarm is not installed the seller must ensure that one is installed prior to settlement at their own cost. Please note that a seller cannot contract out of their obligation to have a smoke alarm installed.

If the seller has disclosed that a compliant smoke alarm has not been installed and you proceed to settle the Contract you will then be liable to ensure that a compliant smoke alarm is installed. In the event that a smoke alarm is not installed you risk being fined up to $375.00.

Please visit the Queensland Fire and Rescue website for more information

Electrical Safety Switch

Under the Contract of Sale the seller must disclose whether an electrical safety switch is installed in the property. If an electrical safety switch is not installed and the seller has disclosed that there is a safety switch under the Contract, the seller must ensure that one is installed prior to settlement at their own cost.

If an approved electrical safety switch for general purpose socket outlets has not been installed in the property and the seller has disclosed this, you are required to have one installed within 3 months following settlement. Failure to do so could result in a $1,500 penalty.

Settlement

Once the Contract has gone unconditional we will contact your mortgagee to arrange a time for settlement.  We will also review settlement figures once they have been provided to us from the buyers solicitor.

We will contact you prior to settlement to discuss how you would like your settlement funds to be disbursed and we will confirm the adjustment / settlement figures with you.

We will attend settlement on your behalf to exchange the relevant documents and funds.  Once settlement is finalised, we will contact you to confirm.

Post settlement

After settlement has been effected we will send you a final letter containing the settlement statement, our tax invoice and tax receipt.