Settlement as it’s often referred to in Australia, is the day that a piece of property officially passes ownership from the seller to the buyer. All remaining debt is paid on the property and all documents are signed and delivered to the appropriate lending institutions.
It’s also an exciting day for both buyer and seller, as both are able to move on to new ventures.
Your realtor will handle most of the settlement preparations and help you organize any closing documents that you may need. However, the whole process of selling your home can expedite or delay the closing process.
Here’s a more in-depth look of what it takes to get to the closing table and settle the deal.
Contracts and Pricing
One of the main things most Australian home owners are concerned with is the value of their home. A professional valuation will tell you what he believes your home is worth, and your realtor will list it on the market for a competitive price.
Once you start getting bids, you will need to counteroffer with opposing prices or conditions until you have a bid that meets your needs.
Your realtor will then draw up contracts that specify the price, suggested settlement date, any chattels or possessions included in the sale, and the terms and conditions of the sale.
Once both the buyer and seller agree to the contract terms an exchange of contract is made. While it’s not ideal for contract changes to occur after they’ve been signed, as long as both parties are agreeable, your realtor or legal adviser can always add an addendum to the current contract specifying different terms.
The act of exchanging contracts officially starts the countdown to the closing date.
Cooling Off and Conveyance
While laws vary by state and territory, many places in Australia allow a potential buyer a cooling off period. This gives them time to seek legal advice or a have an inspection done without the fear that the seller will sell to someone else.
The time period will be specified in the contract. The buyer’s agent will also make sure that the property has met all legal requirements, and any last minute paperwork will be filed.
On the date of settlement all contracts should be signed and ready to go. Any fees and taxes must also be paid up to the date that you’re turning the property over to the buyer.
At the closing, the closing specialist will go over all of the paperwork with the buyer. The buyer will hand over any remaining debt owed on the property and your realtor will provide the buyer with keys for the property.
The title and deeds are also transferred and you no longer own the property. To help you even more with Understanding the Closing Process When Selling Your Australian Home you should seek legal advice.
In many cases, the seller need not be present at the closing. Once the closing is complete, the payment will be confirmed and you have officially closed on the deal.
Thanks again and until next week.
Regards Richard Colum