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Forum Law has started the New Year with a steady stream of sales and purchase transactions, which have indicated to us that it’s still a seller’s market, as some of our prospective purchaser clients have missed out on being the successful purchasers on sales of properties mainly in the inner west. We had an increase in the number of sales of commercial properties towards the end of 2013, as well as increased volumes of commercial and retail leasing.
There are also new laws being introduced in respect of any swimming pools on the property. Any existing contracts for sale of a property, therefore, will have to be updated to ensure that the contract complies with the new laws of disclosure and compliance with these new requirements. Legal services related to conveyancing in the Inner West, therefore, continue to be relevant to facilitate smoother sales transactions.
It is always critical to ensure that any purchaser has finance approval in writing before Exchanging on a Contract for the purchase of a property. Of course a purchaser can Exchange on the Contract with the Cooling Off period (which is usually 5 business days after the exchange) on the basis that if the purchaser does not receive the written finance approval before the Cooling Off period expires, then the purchaser can rescind the Contract and only be required to pay an amount of 0.25% of the Purchase Price.
Purchasers are advised to be wary of clauses in the “Special Conditions” of a Contract for the sale of a property which provide for the early release of the deposit to the vendor. These clauses should only be agreed to if the released deposit is directed into a “trust” account of an agent or lawyer for the purpose of the vendor purchasing a property. The reason for this is to ensure any released deposit is “quarantined” and if the Purchase of the Property does not complete due to the fault of the vendor then the Purchaser is able to trace the deposit and be reimbursed.