There are two essential things you should deal with before you enter the property market:

Ensure that you can afford it

Take into consideration the cost of Stamp duty; pre purchase inspection reports; legal costs; bank fees and other charges associated with your loan; property rates, levies and charges; household insurance; removalist charges; and future repairs to the property.

Have your loan pre approved

It will reduce a great amount of stress if you have your loan “pre approved” prior to entering the property market, having provided to your nominated lender all required financials to verify your income.  Generally the only matter your lender will then need to arrange is a property valuation when you locate the property you would like to purchase.


When you find the property you would like to purchase and the vendor (seller) has accepted your offer, you should immediately notify your conveyancer.

The vendor is required to sign the Contract and the purchaser(buyer) is required to sign an identical copy of the Contract. Contracts will then be compared to ensure they are identical and physically swapped (exchanged) and the front page of each Contract will be dated. The Completion date will run from the Contract date.

Contracts may be exchanged with or without a cooling off period. The standard contract provides for a 5 business day cooling off period. During this time you will need to obtain written “unconditional or formal” loan approval which will usually issue promptly if your loan has been pre approved as outlined above. You should forward to your lender immediately a copy of the front page of the Contract so that arrangements can be made for the property valuation.

During the cooling off period we highly recommend that you have the property inspected by a qualified building and pest inspector and where you are buying into a strata/community scheme a Strata Inspection Report is extremely beneficial. Once you are bound to proceed with the purchase all problems with the property are yours. A building inspection report can also be of assistance when carrying out a final inspection of the property prior to completion. If you feel the property has been damaged since you exchanged Contracts, you can refer back to your building inspection report to verify the condition of the property.

It is important to bear in mind that should you decide to withdraw from the contract during the cooling off period, for whatever reason, you will forfeit to the vendor .25% of the purchase price.

If you have decided not to proceed with the purchase, it is crucial that you notify your conveyancer well before the cooling off expiry so that the proper legal notice can be served on the vendors conveyancer otherwise you will be bound to complete the contract.

Buying at Auction

Should you intend to purchase a property at auction, be aware that if you are the successful bidder you will be required on the day of auction to sign an unconditional contract (no cooling off period) and pay the required deposit, usually 10% of the price. As you will be immediately bound to the contract, it is important that prior to the auction you carry out pre purchase inspections, have your loan formally approved and have your conveyancer explain the terms of the Contract to you.

Feel free to contact us with any enquiries you may have about buying your home or investment property.

We are more than happy to talk you through the process of a purchase transaction.

  • Before entering the property market, do your home loan homework and have your loan “pre approved”!!

  • Forward a copy of the front page of the Contract to your lender without delay.

  • Arrange for pre purchase inspections (particularly Building, Pest and Strata).

  • Hunt around for a good household insurance policy.

  • Check the completion date/settlement date on the contract. Is this time frame sufficient?  The completion date on the contract is usually 42 days.  You may be able to negotiate the completion date with the vendor but before doing so you should contact your conveyancer to discuss.  This will need to be done before you are committed to the purchase.

  • Check that the items marked as “inclusions” and “exclusions” on the front page of the contract are correct

  • Check the location of the boards sewer in relation to the property. Have any buildings been built over the sewer.  Will the location of the sewer interfere with your proposed building work/swimming pool

  • Consider whether structural renovations have been carried out to the property.  Have the works been approved by Council?

  • Make an appointment with your conveyancer to explain the contract to you in detail.

  • Book a removalist

  • Arrange for services to be connected to the property ie electricity, telephone, gas (if available).

  • Notify change of address to  RMS, Electrol roll, Medicare, healthfund, financial institutions, car insurer.  Also arrange with Australia Post for a redirection notice.

  • Arrange an appointment with the agent to conduct a final inspection of the property prior to completion. (usually the day the morning of settlement)

  • Your conveyancer will notify you and the agent as soon as settlement has taken place.

  • Pick up the keys from the agent!