Helpful tips for purchasers (established homes)

Buying an investment property or a home to live in is an exciting exercise. It is important however to ensure the certain things are considered to avoid any potential headaches. We have listed out some simple tips to consider when purchasing.

Check the property

The vendor is only required to provide the property in the same condition as at the date of sale (save for fair wear and tear)

Make sure you conduct a thorough inspection of the property and make detailed notes regarding the condition of the property. You should check all appliances to ensure they are in working order. Pests and structural soundness of the home should be checked.

Here are some simple questions to ask:

  1. are there any particular features and/or fixtures you expect to remain with the property (for example special light fittings, garden features, window furnishings)?
  2. Is there rubbish on the property, underneath the house or In the backyard which should be removed before or at settlement?
  3. does the agent or vendor have all the keys to all lockable doors and windows and remotes to the garage or appliances (where applicable).

We are happy to review a contract and section 32 prior to you making an offer on the property.

Making your offer and checking the terms of offer

Real estate agents can help facilitate the signing process. You should always check the terms and conditions of the contract to ensure the information is accurate and correctly records your offer.

More specifically, we recommend you to check the following:

  1. Your full legal name should be written into the contract of sale.
  2. Is the contract subject to loan approval? If so, by what date? It is your responsibility to apply for the finance as soon as the contract has been signed by the vendor.
  3. How much is the deposit? When is the deposit due? We recommend for the deposit payment date to coincide with the loan approval date (if applicable).
  4. Are there any special conditions you want to include? E.g. Subject to Building and Pest inspection? Do you require the contract to be subject to all gas and electrical appliances being in good working order at the day of settlement?
  5. What is the settlement date?
  6. How long is your offer valid for? The vendor may not accept your offer straight away, however you might wish to limit the timeframe from which the vendor can accept your offer. This can be found on the signing page of the contract of sale. If no date is specified, the offer lapses after 3 clear business days.

Be mindful of the critical dates: finance approval date; deposit due date; special condition due date; and the settlement date


You may end the contract within 3 business days from the date you sign the contract if none of the following exceptions applies:

  • The property was bought at or within 3 clear business days before or after a publicly advertised auction
  • The property is used primarily for industrial or commercial purposes
  • The property is more than 20 hectares in size and is used primarily for farming
  • You and the vendor previously signed a contract for the sale for the same land in substantially the same terms
  • You are an estate agent of a corporate body

You must give written notice to either the vendor or the vendors’ agent that you are ending the contract or leave the notice at the address of the vendor or the vendors’ agent to end the contract within the 3 business days in accordance with the cooling off provision.

You are entitled to a refund of all the money you paid EXCEPT for $100 or 0.2% of the purchase price (whichever is more) if you end the contract this way

If you are unsure about any part of the section 32 and/or Contract of Sale, please contact our office before you sign any document. We are happy to assist with the wording of any special conditions you may wish to include in the contract of sale and to answer any queries or concerns you may have.