What Is Conveyancing?
“Conveyancing” is the legal process involved in transferring the title of a property from a seller to a buyer.
A conveyance comes into being by a Contract for Sale of Land. This is normally prepared by a legally qualified person, such as a conveyancer acting for a vendor (seller) and is checked by the purchaser’s (buyer’s) conveyancer.
Besides dealing with the actual contract and transfer, many ancillary functions are involved such as checking to see if the property is affected by;
- Government authority proposals
- Local council and state government compliance
- Condition of the property as regards building and pests
- Strata reports
- Easements and covenants
- Stamp duty
- Land tax, council and water rates
What you need to ask your conveyancer
Are you professionally insured?
- Are you a member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers?
- Who will personally be handling my file?
- How will you keep me up to date with what’s happening?
- What are all my costs involved?
- Do I get a written cost estimation?
To practice Best Conveyancing in New South Wales –
a conveyancer must –
- Promote, reform and improve the conveyancing profession.
- Represent the views of the profession and its members.
- Encourage and promote the study of conveyancing.
- Encourage honourable conduct and best practices throughout the profession.
Solicitors Vs Conveyancers
• Only specialize in ‘real property’ related law known as conveyancing.
• Must have completed a minimum 2 years study at tertiary level on ‘real property’ law.
• Must have at least 2 years supervised practical experience in conveyancing before they can apply for a conveyancing license. Conveyancing licenses are issued and administered by the NSW Office of Fair Trading.
• In NSW a Licensed Conveyancer is just as qualified as a Solicitor to undertake the legal work involved in a conveyancing transaction.
• The majority of Licensed Conveyancers are self-employed and run their own business. This means that you are likely to be dealing with the Principal of the conveyancing business. A Licensed Conveyancer can also work in a legal office.
• Often based in the Suburbs and there is likely to be a Licensed Conveyancer in your local area. Some Licensed Conveyancers offer flexible appointment times or a mobile service.
• The cost of services offered by a Licensed Conveyancer are generally ‘fixed fee’ and considered cheaper than that offered by a Solicitor.
• If a transaction becomes litigious or is beyond the scope of what is considered conveyancing work under the Conveyancers Licensing Act 2003 then a Licensed Conveyancer must refer the transaction to a Solicitor for assistance.
• Solicitors can practice in many areas of law including conveyancing and can be involved in transactions which require their attendance at Court.
• A Solicitor undertakes 6 months study in relation to ‘real property’ law during their law degree and ‘conveyancing’ is an optional elective. No practical training in conveyancing is required once a Solicitor is admitted to practice law.
• Solicitors often call themselves Conveyancers.
• Solicitors often have the assistance of a law clerk, secretary or Licensed Conveyancer to complete the conveyancing transaction on their behalf.
• Can often to be located in the City CBD or other major business districts rather than suburbs and don’t tend to offer flexible appointment times or a mobile service.
• A Solicitor may charge you by the hour rather than a fixed professional fee.
• If the transaction becomes litigious then a Solicitor may have the expertise to handle the conveyancing transaction without the need to refer it to other legal practitioner.
More people are now using the services of a Licensed Conveyancer than a Solicitor as they tend to be more price competitive and easily contactable.Read More
One of the largest investments a person can make or a family is purchasing a house. However, without the right information on how to go about it, it may prove difficult and time-consuming. Many house owners wish they knew what they know now about buying a house before they invested their money. Whilst some tips seem obvious to people who have bought property before, to people who are beginning to invest in property find them helpful. Buying a new home requires you research many things and have enough information about property. Below are beneficial tips to know before purchasing a home.
A 20 percent deposit is not a must-have
House buyers who have saved less than one-fifth of the total cost of the property can get mortgages from lenders if they are willing to travel that path. However, the buyers should pay lender mortgage insurance, which is used as a security by the lenders in case the purchaser is not in a position to pay for the property. The lender, in most cases, adds the insurance fee on loan and may charge you higher rates. For people who can afford to pay for the 20 percent deposit, they should go for it as it is the most preferred option, as stated by Laura Higgins, a senior executive leader with ASIC’s.
Banks will lend you money
When it is a good deal to borrow money from a bank to buy a property, sometimes it is not the most suitable option. Most of the banks that lend people money to buy their dream house intentionally are willing to give them more than they can afford to pay. When you borrow more than you can pay, this can lead to a lifestyle that you cannot afford or do not suit you, making you unhappy, and that is not what you want. Only borrow what you can afford to pay and live within your budget. Besides, do not feel tempted to buy a house that is far much beyond your budget just because your bank is willing to finance you.
Additional costs associated with purchasing a property
There are some costs that come with buying a house, which is essential to understand as you do not need surprises when signing the final documents. Government fees, LMI, transfer fees, stamp duty, building, and pest report charges, solicitors and conveyancing fees are some of the costs associated with the purchase of property that adds up to thousands of dollars. Moreover, if you are buying a house with a friend or family member, let them help you research. Doing so will save you from surprises when you are finally ready to sign the final documents.
Loan Pre-approval is not an assurance of being rendered a loan
To see if you are eligible for a credit, many lenders weigh your debt, expenditure, and income. Pre-approval service gives you the mandate to check on the property offers that suit your budget. Experts say pre-approval is excellent in giving you a realistic picture of your budget, thus helping you to plan on the kind of property you want to buy. It is good to conduct this service at the early stages of house buying so that you stick to property within your budget than going ahead to check on the property you cannot afford according to your budget only to end up disappointed.
Take up insurance as soon as you sign the contract
After a seller and a buyer agree on the prices, the buyer may not move into the new house immediately. Most lenders advise buyers to take up insurance cover against damage before they move in the home regardless of what the legal liability against damage states in your region.
There are different conditions for purchasing auction home
Some agents find it easier to sell their houses through auction, this can be a bit tricky for buyers who are not sure about their finances or even pests and building reports. Nonetheless, with an auction, if you meet the reserve price and win, you will have to purchase the property. The best way to buy a property through auction is to do a lot of research to familiarize yourself with what is expected of you to avoid traps.
Useful links you should check out before purchasing your new home –
- Property Search 4U
Engaging Property Search 4U as your exclusive buyer’s agent will redress your disadvantage, by having your own personal advocate committed to achieving only your objectives. A competent professional dedicated exclusively to buying or leasing property on your behalf, who can confidently answer your property search questions, and deliver a solution that streamlines the entire process.
- Real Estate.com.au
The biggest Real Estate website in Australia. Find the most properties on the net.
- Office of State Revenue NSW Treasury
The Office of State Revenue (OSR) is one of two offices which comprise the NSW Treasury. OSR administers State taxation, collects revenue, outstanding fines and penalties, develops policy and implements legislation relating to State taxation for and on behalf of the people of NSW.
- NSW Office of Fair Trading
The primary role of the Office of Fair Trading is to administer these consumer laws and to look after the rights of consumers. At the same time they advise businesses and traders on fair and ethical practices. The aim is to achieve fairness for all in the marketplace.
- NSW Department of Housing
The Department operates under the Housing Act 2001 to manage the New South Wales Government’s housing portfolio and develop broader housing strategies. Also responsible for administering the various Commonwealth and State Housing Agreement Acts.
- Australian Institute of Conveyancers – NSW Division
As the professional body representing licensed conveyancer in NSW the purpose of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers NSW Division is to promote, reform and improve the conveyancing profession; to represent the views of the profession and its members; to encourage and promote the study of of conveyancing, and to encourage honourable conduct and best practices throughout the profession.conveyancing, and to encourage honourable conduct and best practices throughout the profession.
- Home Price Guide
Newsletter Sydney Edition – 15 November, 2007
“They Stole My House” Your home can be stolen, read about some high profile cases of title fraud. click here to read more…
If buying a house in NSW has been your dream then count yourself lucky because although buying a house can be a daunting task, it is also one of the most important long term decisions that you can make for happiness in your life. It is a big commitment and that is why this guide is there to help you settle in your dream home. Read on and find out.
Buying a home in NSW can be done in two ways:-
To be eligible to buy a property through an auction you have to first register and then be the highest bidder. However, it is also good to involve your solicitor or conveyancer to help you out before bidding in case there are unfair terms. You need to evaluate the strata reports, pest reports, and other relevant reports to ensure you are well set before the auction. Ensure you are well equipped financially with pre-approvals when attending the auction because you might be lucky enough to win the bid.
Purchasing a home through a private Treaty involves a direct seller. They normally quote prices but you can negotiate for a more favorable price. Once you have agreed, then you will activate the contract by signing and making a deposit of around 10%. Normally, here in NSW, there is usually a cooling period of approximately 5 days.
What you need to know when buying a house.
You need to organize your finances before you decide to purchase a home. This involves speaking to your financial advisor to give you some lead on how you will handle the task before you. It is also good to speak to your financial institutions and see how much you can borrow depending on your payment capabilities. The cost of buying a house depends on the amount of deposit that you will make. There are stamp duty and other conveyancing fees and legal. Therefore, identify the total cost involved so that it can give you a good platform to prepare your finances.
Inspection of the property
Once you are well equipped financially you need to ensure you find time to inspect the property, irrespective of whether it was found in the newspaper or online. You need to consider the precise location because NSW is a big state with lots of regions so you should be very particular when it comes to location. Determine the kind of property also in terms of the design of the property. It could be a townhouse or an apartment. You need to consider such options. Inspection can be tedious if you decide to do it alone. So you should involve a NSW real estate agent or other professions to help you in obtaining building inspections, home warranty reports, community title inspection reports, and structural engineer reports. This helps you to identify if there are any issues with the property before you purchase.
Submit your offer
After doing the necessary research and identifying a suitable property and you are about to close the deal by placing your offer. Some people might perceive it as a tedious task but it is pretty simple. You need to request the agent to give you a copy of the contract that permits the property to be sold. This is one of the most important legal documents which you will be required to give it to your solicitor to make a review. This ensures that the property has no pending cases that may hinder it from being sold. Once your solicitor gives you a go-ahead that the contract for sale is in order then you are free to submit your order.
In NSW you can submit it via a written document or verbal, though it is better to put things in writing to make it more legitimate. During such a time, some agents might permit you to leave a deposit but it is not a guarantee that the property will be sold to you. If they get any other potential buyers during this stage then your money will be refunded or a chance to make a higher offer.
Processing of legal documents.
Processing legal documents is very important once your offer has been accepted. This is the time you will require handy support from your solicitor or conveyancer who has been certified by the legal authorities and they have been licensed by the NSW fair trading. They should also have indemnity insurance that protects you in case any mistake occurs during the process. Irrespective of whether you engage a solicitor or a conveyancer they should be able to arrange the change of title, assets and review the sales contract, make arrangements on payments and represent you during the settlement process.
Negotiation and placing deposits
The solicitor will represent you during this process because here in NSW the purchase process is determined by the exchange of contracts where you and seller will receive a copy. You are expected to sign before it is exchanged. At this point, you should be ready to pay at least a 10% deposit of the total price. In case a new agreement arises as a result of negotiation then it should be reflected on the contract.
Additionally, there is a 5 -day cooling period which allows either party to withdraw. However, if you choose to withdraw through a written notice then you will have to pay the seller 0.25%of the total price agreed for the property.
If you choose to proceed with the process you will generally have 4-8 weeks to finalize on payment and prepare other pending legal documents unless other terms are agreed on such as a delayed or speed settlement On the settlement day, your solicitor and the legal representative will convene to make an official exchange of cheques and transfer of property.
It is during this time that you should count yourself a new owner of the property and you can prepare to settle in at any time after that. This process is not that complicated and after reading this guide at least you have seen that the home buying process here in NSW is easy and convenient.Read More
Do you want to buy a new house? If it’s the first time buying a new home you need to get the best deals in terms of price, location, and house. It’s one of the biggest steps you will take in your life, buying a new house, and care needs to be taken because the market is filled with properties – some good and others not so good. Real Estate Agents have to declare certain things but they are in the business of selling houses. Like everything it is a case of ‘let the buyer beware’ as you will not want to waste our hard earned money on a bad investment even if it is to be your future home.
There are a number of factors that need to be checked to ensure you get the best deal on the market. Always remember that buying a property or house is the biggest purchase of your life; hence a small mistake can cost your dear. If you are a first-time home buyer, the following are some home buying tips to ensure you come out of this often stressful process smiling -:
Inspect the neighborhood
When buying a house, it’s not always about the house but also the neighborhood. Check the location of the house and about the neighborhood. Ensure you also tour the immediate neighborhood to ensure you buy a house that is worth your budget. Look for important social amenities such as schools, shops, hospitals, and churches. Also, ensure you visit a police station within the locality and inquire about the crime rates.. Ensure you can easily and conveniently access all the social amenities of your house. Visit it at different times of the day, what aspect does it face, are there speed bumps or heavy traffic. Where is the closest park, shopping centre, train station?
Get legal advice
Before signing any contract, always get legal advice from a professional that specializes in real estate like the shire conveyancers who will look over your contract with no obligation. Though real estate agents can handle most of the paperwork on your behalf, it’s important to get legal help from an experienced professional that knows conveyancing law. A sound and qualified legal counsel will ensure property transfer is smooth before you transfer the funds. Real estate paperwork comes with a lot of documents that need signing before the transfer of property is complete. If you make some small mistakes, you may end up losing some or all your money.
Always remain calm because you may end up buying the wrong house if you aren’t calm. You may end up being carried away if you try to secure a home in a rush. Also, you may ignore some important factors which may come back to bite you. Real estate professionals recommend that you should remain calm and take your time during the entire process of buying a property. Evaluate everything in a sober perspective before making any major decisions. By doing this, you will not only get the best deal but also ensure you don’t fall into some of the traps that others have fallen in before you..
Take your and get inspections
What makes a home is the people that live in the house. This is true, but you also can’t downplay the structure of the house. You should make various considerations when accessing the house to ensure you get the best deal. Ensure you are not in a hurry and look for factors such as cost, size, the house set up, and the house location. If you are unsure get a pest inspection a building report – better to pay a few hundred dollars than lose much more after settlement.
Hire a buyers agent
Professional help may be necessary when buying a house for the first time. You may be the kind of person who prefers to do things on their own, but when it comes to such a huge investment, consider some professional help. A buyers agent know a lot about the market, and they have skills to help any homebuyer get the most out of their hard-earned money.
Check for some loan home assistance
The New South Wales government is always trying to help citizens help acquire their basic needs conveniently – and this includes their first home. The government has home grant programs to help ease the initial financial burden on purchasing the home of their dreams. You can apply for those grants or loans if you have been a law-abiding citizen, and pay taxes. Take advantage of incentives provided by the government.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate
Always negotiate to get the house at the best price possible. There are so many deals out there, and they are not going to lower the asking price unless you place an offer. Make the offer time sensitive to put pressure on the seller – especially if you know it up for sale becauses of divorce or financial hardship.
Get it insured
After you have purchased your dream house, it’s recommended to get your house insured against any possible risks such as theft and fire immediately. It may be an additional cost to your budget, but it’s a thing that you will never regret.
You should always remember these home buying tips to ensure you get the best deal. Find a valuer to inspect the house to see if it’s worth the price. He will help you realize if there is any discrepancy and also give you an inside look of any repairs you may need to do.Read More
In New South Wales most first home buyers do not have available more than $300,000, so with properties now close to reaching a median price of $1,000,000 they will have to take out a home loan to make up the difference. The home loan from the bank is combined with the funds available to pay for the new home purchased. Since the banks have specific criteria to decide who will be eligible for a home loan, it is recommended that the home buyer should apply for a pre-loan before spending time and resources on other home purchase activities.
Pre-approval for loans & Unconditional approval
The home buyer can get an indication of the amount which he can borrow from the lender based on his income, liabilities and debt. This is called conditional approval or pre-approval. There may be other conditions for getting a loan like providing the additional documentation required, or providing a valuation of the home being purchased. The definition for pre-approval will vary depending on the lender, so the buyer should check the exact definition with his preferred lender.
The pre-approval for a home loan can help the home buyer finalize his budget for the property. It should be obtained when the home buyer has decided to purchase a property, usually before bidding at a property auction or making an offer for the property. The home buyer should be aware that the lender is not obliged to give a loan to a person even if he has pre-approval.
Unconditional approval is obtained later in the buying process. To obtain this approval, the buyer will have to complete a formal application for a loan, and may have to provide additional details of the home, like insurance proof or valuation. After this approval is obtained, the documents for loan offer are given, and the loan application is processed.
Pre-approval process for home loans
Home buyers can visit the lenders branch personally or apply for pre-approval over phone or online. There are loan comparison services and mortgage brokers who can also help in the pre-approval process. The pre-approval is not binding on the lender if the conditions for lending or buyers financial status changes. Also the bank may not loan the pre-approved amount, and in some cases, not offer any kind of loan. There are calculators available to determine the deposit amount and the monthly repayments for home loans.
How do banks provide pre-approval for home loans
When the banks are loaning a home buyer money they are taking a risk, since the amount may not be repaid. Hence the bank will ask for certain information, especially financial details in the loan application to get a pre-approved loan. The lender will analyse the income, savings, expenses, debt and financial history of the loan applicant, to determine the overall financial health of the home buyer. This information is then used to determine whether the home buyer is eligible for a loan, and if yes, how much the loan amount.
If the loan is being approved for a specific home purchase, the bank will also try to independently assess the home value to ensure that the ratio of home loan and property value is below the range considered safe by the lender.
Income and expenses are also used by the bank to determine when the home buyer can afford to make the repayments of the home loan regularly. Income considered is the salary or wages and other sources of income like business income, investment income like dividends. Major expenses are groceries, transportation, utility bills and leisure activities. The repayment amount is considered at interest rate which may be up to three percent higher, to check whether the loan taker can repay the loan, even if interest rates will increase.
Banks are less willing to loan money to individuals who already have a large amount of debt. The debt considered includes business, car, student loans and credit card debt. Hence reducing the number of credit cards and their limits, repaying the other loans, will make it easier to get a home loan
Usually lenders prefer to lend to home buyers who already have enough deposits to make a large upfront payment – generally this is seen as 20% of the total purchase price. The home buyer should also have enough money saved, so that he can continue making the repayments, if the financial conditions change due to loss or job or increased expenses for children.
The lender will check the recent savings history of the loan applicant, usually the savings accumulated for six or three months. The lender will also check the credit history of the loan applicant, especially if there are any credit card or loan defaults earlier. Despite the default, the home buyer may get a loan, if he can provide a reasonable explanation for the default and how he will ensure that this problem will not occur in future.Read More
First Home Buyers
Stamp Duty, Concessions and Government Grants
What is FHOGS?
The First Home Owner Grant Scheme (FHOGS) is fully funded by the NSW Government and administered by the Office of State Revenue (OSR).
The Scheme was established to assist first home buyers to purchase their first home by offering a $amount grant.
Eligible first home owners can receive the grant regardless of their income or the area in which they are planning to buy or build. However, there is a cap placed on the value of the home.
To qualify as a first home buyer, you must be purchasing the first home you or your spouse have owned or co-owned in Australia,although there are some exceptions.
You must also move into the property within 12 months, and live there for at least six continuous months.
You must be:
- an Australian citizen or a permanent resident of Australia
- at least 18 years old.
Every home buyer would like to get the best deal possible while purchasing their home, since it is both a place to grow with the family and also an future investment which the value will increase in the future. Many individuals who are buying a home for the first time would like to have a large budget which will allow them to purchase many of the properties available for sale in their favorite locale in the city or town they love. However, in reality, the HOME BUDGET depends to a large extent on how much money the home buyer can deposit upfront while purchasing the home, and also how much money he can borrow from various sources towards purchasing that home.
It is recommended that the home buyer discusses the budget for any prospective home purchase with a mortgage broker or lender before starting out looking to purchasing one. Even if the home buyer has not saved a large amount for making the initial deposit required for home purchase, lenders will usually be able to provide information on the kind of deposit required for the type of property the buyer will be able to purchase. This will give direction in planning to buy a home, with the financial and other goals they wish to achieve. The advice of the lender may also help the home buyer modify his plans for the house because the dream house of the home buyer in his preferred locality, may be in fact a dream and cost far more than one is able to afford. This especially applies when purchasing a home for the first time.
Loan Amount for a home buyer
To determine the amount which a home buyer can borrow to purchase a home, he will have to speak to a mortgage broker or a lender like a building society, bank. The lender will calculate the maximum amount of the loan which the home buyer is eligible for, based on a number of factors, like the income, savings of the persons, expenses, assets and the credit history. Though the amount of the loan will usually be similar for most borrowers, there may be some differences in the formula used by the lender for determining the loan amount, based on their experience with different home buyers. In case of new properties, the lender may have a deal with the builder constructing the property who will offer a better loan deal or terms – especially when purchasing properties’ off the plan’.
Though the home buyer may be eligible for a large loan amount, it is usually not advisable for the home buyer to borrow the maximum amount he is eligible for. Being aware that the monthly or periodic mortgage repayments are usually higher for larger loans it is imperative to ensure that there will be sufficient income and available funds to make these payments. There are other expenses which purchasers should take into consideration like council taxes, insurance and strata fees, which can be a substantial amount as well as ongoing expenses after purchase. One must also take into account living expenses like food, drink, entertainment and allowing a little to pamper yourself with a beauty or hair treatment. It is better to be safe than sorry and allow for unexpected contingencies.
The home buyer should compare his income after taxes with the estimated cost of owning a home, and also consider other household expenses. Most families have to pay for groceries, utility bills, schooling, transport and leisure. If the home buyer calculates that only a small amount will be left for some of the non essential expenses like going on a holiday or dining out, the home buyer can consider taking a smaller loan. The other option for the home buyer is to lead a frugal life to reduce the expenses since he now owns a house, till his income increases or the debt is reduced.
It is highly recommended that the home buyer should undergo a “test” to determine his financial limits. For example, the interest rate on the home loan may increase by one or two percent, and the home buyer should be able to pay the additional amount by factoring this in. Though the job of the home buyer may appear extremely secure at present, anything can happen in future and circumstances may change due to illness or industry decline. Ensuring that there is sufficient money for mortgage payments for a few months, even if a job is lost or there is no regular income. When purchasing a home the buyer should budget for his dream home, considering the worst possible scenario, so that his home remains secure in the face unexpected difficulties.Read More
At the Shire Conveyancer we wish to help both experiences and first time home buyers in helping them make right decisions when purchasing a new home. Often it is doing the work, necessary inquiries and having things like pre loan approvals that will make this wonderful event seamless and without future heartache.
Find the ultimate guide to buying a home here that takes you through each step of the buying process –
Discover what you need to do PRIOR to taking the massive step of purchasing a new home. Ensure that your budget allows you to maintain regular repayments even in the face of unexpected events like interest rate rises or job loss.
The First Home Buyer Grant in New South Wales assiste people buying their first home with the initial deposit. Find out if you are eligible here.
Understand what the bank or mortgage broker will want to find out about your financial circumstance and how they determine how much they will lend you.
Tips and Tricks to allow you to find your new home and get it at the right price. Most importantly things to check and obtain like a building report or construction certificate.
An easy to follow A-Z guide on the process of buying a home in New South Wales.
Have you ever had that moment when you thought I wish I only knew that before…. This article will hopefully ensure that this does not happen to you when purchasing a new home.
Hopefully this article has been a helpful resource in purchasing your new home and take advantage of our many offers at the Shire Conveyancer to make this process fast, efficient and professional.Read More