Central Coast consumers have a choice of conveyancing solutions

Posted on 26 May 2010

Linda Gulliver
Branch Manager/Licensed Conveyancer
EAST COAST CONVEYANCING
Ph 02 4365 0624
Email lindagulliver@eastcoastconveyancing.com.au
Web www.eastcoastconveyancing.com.au

ARE YOU BUYING OR SELLING PROPERTY ON THE CENTRAL COAST?


As a consumer you have a choice of either using a solicitor, a licensed conveyancer or going with a DIY Kit approach.

The Conveyancing profession on the Central Coast is very competitive. When choosing a CPC you need to ensure that you are getting: good value for money in relation to the costs; personalised service; and clear communications between all parties.

Licensed conveyancers are covered by Indemnity and Fidelity Insurance which protects the consumer every step of the way. Licensed Conveyancers are becoming the popular choice as they are specialists in property law. They are required to complete a university course on conveyancing law and practice. Licensed conveyancers are CPC accredited. This means that they are Certified Practising Conveyancers who have completed the educational and practical training requirements to hold a conveyancer’s licence and are a member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers NSW Division (AIC). The rules and codes of conduct of the AIC apply to all CPC members. They are licensed by the Department of Fair Trading and regulated under the Conveyancers Licensing Act 2003.

Why should you use a licensed conveyancer? They specialise in property law – this is the area of law which they know and understand. Most solicitors are general practitioners and try to be all things to all people. They are tied up in court with litigation, family law, probate and other areas of law. Licensed conveyancers have only one area of law – property law. They are required to attend regular educational seminars to up-date their skills and keep abreast of changes in procedures, legislation and case law which affect property laws.

General misconceptions about conveyancers are that they all the same – this is not the case – like all industries and professions – there are good and bad operators. Ask plenty of questions before giving instructions to ensure that you are comfortable with your conveyancer and trust their knowledge and expertise. Another misconception is that conveyancers can only do easy residential transactions. This is incorrect – they specialise in all areas of property law including complex areas such as: commercial transactions ie sale and purchase of businesses and commercial leases, off the plan sale and purchase of land such as work for developers involving subdivisions, sale and purchase of rural properties, lease agreements for retirement homes, just to mention a few.

Licensed conveyancers have been accredited in NSW since 1992. They are a rapidly expanding profession and are fast becoming the first choice when buying or selling property. There are currently approximately 900 licensed conveyancers in NSW.

The Central Coast is a dynamic and unique property area. One of the fastest growing regions in NSW there is a variety of residential, rural and commercial properties currently on the market. Why not consider a licensed conveyancer when you next buy or sell!

The Process – what is involved in Conveyancing?

Buying a Property


We realise that you may be buying a house or property for the first time, or it may have been a long time ago that you bought or sold property. There are three stages to buying a house or property – and your licensed conveyancer takes care of it all for you.

If you an experienced buyer or seller of property – you too will appreciate the ease with which your matter is handled and the efficient processes that take place during a conveyance.

Before exchange

The land or house buying process begins well before contracts are exchanged.

Your first contact should be your financial adviser, broker or banker to ensure that pre-approval for purchase monies is obtained. Obtaining pre-approval for your loan will speed up the process and when you eventually find your dream home or property, you will be well on your way to unconditional loan approval.

Next step is going to a real estate agent and looking at a variety of properties. The agent will assist with the negotiations with the seller and a price will be agreed between the parties.

Find a licensed conveyancer who is competitive in price and has lots of Conveyancing experience.

At this point, the agent may attend to exchange of contracts. Benefits of exchanging with a cooling off period are: 1) the property is now off the market for the cooling off period; and 2) the vendor is locked into selling the property to you and can’t sell it to anyone else at this point in time.

Checklist for Exchange [what has to be in order before you are locked into the contract]
1 satisfactory pest report
2 satisfactory building report [you want to know what you are buying]
3 unconditional loan approval [preferably in writing]
4 deposit paid to agent
5 terms of the contract settled – they need to be as favourable to the purchaser as possible
When the above points 1-5 are in order – the cooling off period can expire and the purchaser is then bound by the contract and the matter proceeds to settlement.

After exchange and before settlement

Ok, you’re well on your way now to buying a house or property!

Your conveyancer will:
- Ensure that a valid exchange of contracts has taken place
- Read the contract thoroughly and advise you what it all means in simple plain English
- Liaise with the agent and vendor’s conveyancer regarding important dates such as when the cooling off period expires and when completion is due to take place
- Organise pest, building, and if required strata reports
- Check that your lender is aware of the exchange and chase them up for unconditional loan approval prior to expiration of the cooling off period. If loan approval is not through your conveyancer will ask for an extension.
- Prepare all necessary documents, order searches and make sure that settlement progresses smoothly

Settlement

Well before the settlement date your conveyancer will check that the bank is ready to provide purchase funds.

Settlement figures will be prepared and checked. It is important that charges which run with the land such as council and water rates and land tax are paid on settlement. Otherwise, these outstanding fees will become the purchasers responsibility.

Settlement will be booked with your bank and the you will notified of the time that settlement will take place.

We’ll remind you to do a final inspection of the property to make sure that everything is in order.

Your conveyancer will attend settlement taking along any additional cheques which you will provide (for funds not covered by the mortgage) and liaise with your Bank and the seller’s conveyancer. We’ll ring to advise that settlement has taken place – you can now pick up the keys and move into your new home.

What do you have to do!

1 Give notice, if required, on your current leased property. Ensure that this coincides with your proposed settlement date.
2 Pack your clothes and belongings.
3 Arrange your moving day – you might need time off work and a removalist or just some friends and a big truck.
4 Organise the connection of electricity, telephone, gas and other services.

Selling a property


This is like the reverse.  Just like a purchase there are three stages to a sale:

Before exchange

You need to go to your conveyancer to instruct for a marketing contract to be prepared.  The agent needs this before they can market your property.

Next step is deciding which agent to list with.  You can list with several if you choose but usually an exclusive agency agreement is a good option.  Your conveyancer can advise in relation to the fine print in Agency Agreements, if required.

When the agent finds a purchaser and the parties agree on the sale price – a Sales Advice will issue to your conveyancer or your agent may do an exchange of contracts with a cooling off period.  Or your conveyancer will issue a contract to the purchaser’s conveyancer.

After exchange and before settlement

Similar to our purchase above, your conveyancer will check that the exchange is valid and advise of important dates, like when the cooling off expires and the date that settlement is scheduled to take place.

Next step is organising a discharge of your mortgage with your lender.

Prepare all necessary documents and liaise with all parties to ensure that the matter is on track and progressing towards settlement.

Settlement

Your bank will be paid out monies owing on your mortgage and in return title documents will be handed over at settlement.  Any surplus monies are paid to you.

What do you need to do!

  1. Sign all necessary documents.  These may include an Agency Agreement, Contract for Sale of Land, Discharge of Mortgage Request and Transfer.
  2. Give us instructions from time to time
  3. Pack up the house contents and arrange for your move
  4. Organise the disconnection of electricity, telephone, gas and other services after settlement and connection at your new place.

Hey – how easy was that!!!

Your conveyancer can also assist with non contract transfers – often between family members, refinancing between financial institutions and of course commercial transactions such as sale and purchase of business and leases.

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