This advice is intended as a guide only and is based on the REIQ Terms of Contract in Queensland. Individual facts and problems that could affect your rights will vary from contract to contract, which is why you should consult a lawyer if you require legal advice. If you have any doubts you should see a lawyer before you sign the contract.
5 Day Cooling Off Period
The buyers have 5 days after the date the fully signed contract is delivered to the buyers or their solicitors to change their minds. Unlike other provisions of the contract they need no reason for this.
If the buyer terminates the contract under the cooling off provision, 0.25% of the TOTAL purchase price may be deducted from the deposit. The rest of the deposit must be refunded within 14 days.
If the contract is subject to finance or other conditions, then until these are met the buyers may not be completely bound by the Contract. However, the buyers are required to use their best endeavours to obtain finance and comply with the conditions of the contract.
Notice in writing must be given to your lawyer by 5 pm on the finance date advising whether or not the buyers have satisfied the finance condition. If the purchasers do not give the required notice of approval of finance then as the seller, you will have the right to terminate the contract.
Building & Pest Inspection
Notice in writing must be given to the sellers or their lawyer by 5 pm on the date for the building & pest inspection providing whether the buyers are satisfied with the results.
The buyer must act reasonably in terminating the contract under this provision and the seller is entitled to a copy of such report. If the purchasers do not give the required notice by 5 pm on the due date, then the sellers will have the right to terminate the contract.
If the buyers are not satisfied with the report then they may try to negotiate a reduction in price or rectification work on the property. If a written agreement regarding this is not reached by 5 pm on the due date, then the sellers will be able to terminate the contract.
What we do on your Behalf
As at the date of the contract, you must:
- Have free and unqualified capacity and power to contract and to complete the contract;
- Not be under any legal disability which affects your capacity to contract and complete the contract;
- If you are a Trustee you have free and qualified power of sale under the instrument creating the trust and that instrument does not require the consent or authority of any person to the entering into of the contract or completion of the contract.
These statements must be true as at the date of you signing the contract.
Given the above we would ask that you advise us if there are any matters that should be brought to the attention of the Purchasers and if so what steps have been taken to rectify the situation prior to settlement.
- We arrange transfer documents to convey the land to the purchaser. You will need to sign these documents and your signature must be witnessed by a Solicitor or Justice of the Peace. We can assist you in this regard, however, if you are unable to come to our office we will forward these to you and advise you how to sign them correctly.
- We arrange with the solicitors for the purchasers and the financial institution that has your Mortgage or other security for settlement. These include place, time and date and the actual figures and how to draw cheques.
We arrange for settlement agents to attend settlement on your behalf and there is no necessity for you to attend.
The balance purchase moneys are paid by the purchaser at settlement plus or minus adjustments.
One of the major adjustments is the rates on the land. If the rates have been paid for the current assessment period then the purchasers have to pay to you an amount for the rates from the date of settlement to the end of the assessment period. If you have not paid rates for the current assessment period your share of rates up to the date of settlement will be deducted from the balance purchase moneys you receive and a cheque is drawn to the Council to pay the rates.
Physical possession of the property is handed over which is usually signified by the handing over of the keys. The Contract makes specific provision for the handing over of keys, however, because of practical aspects it is best to leave the keys at the real estate agents’ office and the purchaser can collect the keys from the agents after they have been notified that settlement has been effected.
Under the Contract “keys” include keys to and electronic devices for all doors, grilles, shutters and lifts, the term also includes codes and combinations to all locks and any security system on the premises. You must provide these codes and combinations in writing to the purchaser at settlement. If applicable, could you please provide us with these details immediately.
At settlement the financial institutions that hold security over the land will receive the amount owing to them. Unless you direct otherwise we will receive the balance of sale proceeds, deduct our fees, pay the agent any commission owing to them and forward the balance to you, this is usually posted to you on the next working day after settlement. If you wish to make other arrangements please give us written directions as to what you want us to do.
If a real estate agency is involved in the transaction you will be liable to pay commission to them on a Government fixed scale unless there is a special arrangement to the contrary. You should notify us of any special arrangement concerning payment of commission. We notify the real estate agency of settlement and obtain the balance of the deposit from them unless they did not obtain sufficient deposit to cover their commission, in which case we deduct the balance commission owing from the sale proceeds and send it to them.
You should continue your insurance on any improvements on the property. Under the contract the property is at the purchasers’ risk from the next business day after the contract date. However, it is best to continue insurance just in case there are problems or the contract does not proceed.
You should make sure that any goods and chattels included in the sale are correctly described in the contract.
It is unwise to allow the purchaser to have possession of the property prior to settlement. Should you give the purchasers possession of the property prior to settlement please advise us immediately of the date of such possession and any conditions that you imposed upon the purchasers obtaining possession.
Unless otherwise agreed each party bears the expense of their own solicitor’s fees and outlays incurred. The contract provides that the purchaser is to pay Transfer Duty which is a state government tax. However, the Duties Act provides that if the purchaser does not pay Duty then the Office of State Revenue can obtain stamp duty from the seller who must then sue the buyer.
If you have built your own home or had any building work performed on it to a value of $6,000.00 or more by an unregistered builder in the last six years then you cannot sell the property without the consent of the Building Services Authority. The consent of the Authority should have been obtained before you enter into the Contact and a notice should be delivered to the purchaser before they enter into the contract.
If you have not complied with these requirements the purchaser is entitled to terminate the contract and you should advise us if there are any potential problems in this regard.
If you have a copy of the contract when you bought the land you should provide this to us. Many Contracts, especially in new estates, have special clauses in them about what type of house or what out-buildings can be built on the land and also provide that you must insert the same provisions in any contract when you sell the land. It may be too late once you have signed the Contract, however, we will need to look at the original Contract and advise you as to potential problems.
If you have any questions or would like to speak with a Springfield Legal Service representative regarding our service, please contact us.
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