A marriage certificate is vital for identification before settlement.

How a lost marriage certificate can cost a seller thousands

A recent settlement case has underscored the importance of having the appropriate identification documents ready before settlement. In this case, a lost marriage certificate has threatened to cost a seller thousands in penalty interest. Eva Spritz (name changed) bought property before marrying overseas and changing her name to Eva Lancaster. Since marrying, she obtained a …


The $10,000 First Home Owner Grant applies to some renovated properties.

The $10,000 First Home Owner Grant is only for new properties – or is it?

As you may know, the First Home Owner Grant changed last year to provide just $3,000 to buyers of established homes, while raising the grant to $10,000 for buyers of new homes. But did you know that brand new homes aren’t the only ones that allow buyers to apply for the $10,000 grant? Buyers of …


It's risky to make a cash offer when cash is not available.

How a cash offer led to a contract fallover – and how to avoid it

A recent settlement case has shown just how risky it can be to make a cash offer when cash is not available. Our client, a buyer, signed a contract to buy a deceased estate with a deposit of around $25,000. He signed a cash offer – ie. the contract was not conditional upon finance being approved …


Stamp duty applies to most real estate transactions.

The main types of stamp duty and how they affect your transaction

Buyers are always keen to find out how much stamp duty they will be paying – after all, stamp duty is often one of the biggest costs of buying a home. Here, I’ll list the three main rates of stamp duty (also known as Transfer Duty), and explain how they may affect buyers*. 1. Residential …


Every superannuation fund purchase is a little bit different. Image by Alex Proimos.

How self-managed super funds impact settlement

Buying property though a self-managed superannuation fund is not as straightforward as buying in an individual’s name. Because of this, it’s wise to allow extra time for settlement. When buying property through a super fund, the fund’s trust deed must allow for borrowing money inside of the super fund. Some banks have specific requirements for …


The time needed for booking can cause settlement delays.

Small banks and settlement delays: what you need to know

Due to the time needed for booking, clients of small banks could experience settlement delays. These delays aren’t experienced by all clients of small banks: if everything in a settlement goes to plan, the use of a smaller lender generally doesn’t cause any issues. However, if for some reason the bank isn’t ready to book …


As with passports, real estate contracts must have the full legal name.

Is that contract in the wrong name? How to avoid identification mistakes

When writing contracts, ensure you use the buyer’s and seller’s full legal names as per their passports and/or birth certificates. A recent case study has shown that driver’s licenses don’t always have the client’s full legal name. Our client, Michaelo (name changed), is currently in the process of settling the purchase of his new home. …


Deceased estate sales often require a survivorship application or transmission application.

How survivorship applications can delay settlement

Survivorship applications and transmission applications are now more likely to cause settlement delays, unless they are accounted for when writing the Offer and Acceptance. As you may know, the purpose of both survivorship applications and transmission applications is to transfer property after an owner has passed away. Survivorship applications transfer property to the remaining joint …