First Time Home Buyers - Signing a Contract Before Obtaining Legal Advice.

February 2, 2019

Looking for a house to buy can be exhausting

Once you’ve spent weeks or months looking for the place with the perfect location, kitchen, yard and number of bedrooms you just want to get the sale over with and move in. This race to the finish could be a bit of a trap though, as you want to make sure your contract is just right, and you won’t have any surprises.

Pro Tip – To ensure that you do not make this common mistake, contact a trusted Conveyancer early in your home buying plans.

The contract of sale

The contract of sale is the document that outlines the terms of the sale and the details of the property. Typically, the contract prescribes the settlement date, sale price and any conditions of sale. Along with the contract, you should receive documentation regarding zoning, plan of the land including easements, drainage diagrams, and sewer plans. You should also receive a list of any restrictions or covenants that apply to the property. These are particularly important if you’re looking to build, renovate or subdivide.

Conditions can be added to the contract to save you from future hassles. If you want the contact to include a condition of a positive building and pest inspection you can have this included in the contract. If you wanted to ensure the sale of a current property or that you receive finance these can also be put in the contract as conditions. If you have discussed whitegoods being included in the sale you should absolutely have these fixtures included as a condition in the contract.

When you’re buying a house the selling agents are friendly. You have to remember that ultimately though, they want to sell the house and they are looking out for the seller.

When you’re buying a house the selling agents are friendly. You have to remember that ultimately though, they want to sell the house and they are looking out for the seller. You are the one that has to look out for yourself and when it comes to the contract that might be difficult. Contracts are written as legal documents and as such can be a confusing document to get your head around. At this point, it’s good to get someone on your team to make sure your best interests come first. In this case, a solicitor is your best option.

Meet with the solicitor and discuss what your plans are

The more that they understand about your situation the clearer things will be for them when it comes time to look at the contract. A solicitor can not only review the document but also advise as to whether the terms are suitable for you. They can ensure that conditions are included to get you the home you need without putting you at financial risk. If you think there have been extensions or renovations on the house, they can request documentation to ensure these were done with permission and meet building standards.

When it comes to signing the contract on a property

Having a solicitor’s expertise can be a good safety net to prevent you from being caught out by a contract that favours the seller. If you are looking for a property and think a contract might not be far off, contact us at CM Lawyers to get one of our solicitors on your team.

Related Article – 11 Common First Home Buyer Mistakes

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