Top property tips before signing that agreement

Top property tips before signing that agreement

For many people, buying a property, particularly their first home, can be an emotion based decision that is often made impulsively.  Our tips below can help property buyers to avoid some common issues down the track.

1. Do a second inspection

It is wise to arrange a second viewing with the agent outside of the regular open home hours. This will give you a chance to have a good look around and ensure it’s the property that you really want. It is also a good idea to take a look at different times of the day. This can also give you an idea if any traffic outside the property will be of concern in terms of noise or privacy.

2. Always check for maintenance issues

This can be done by being upfront and asking the agent about any known issues as well as by arranging a visit from a qualified builder. You will also need to ensure your offer for purchase has a condition added to reflect obtaining a builder’s report. Maintenance issues can be very pricey and/or ongoing. Unless you have deep pockets, it is always best to check these out first.

3. Do your research

If making an offer, make sure that your offer is conditional on getting a satisfactory valuation. Contact your insurer to make sure the property is insurable and to see how much the premiums would be. Make a call to the local council to check whether any works are going to be undertaken in the area as that may effect the value and liveability of the property.  Check the property has had no issues recorded on the Council’s records (e.g. flooding etc).  Obtaining a LIM from the Council would cover these matters and we recommend this as it provides a more comprehensive review on the property and would provide for any known work that has been completed on it.  Again, ensuring you have a condition inserted in your agreement is recommended when making an offer for purchase.

4. Sort out your financing

Contact your mortgage lender to ensure that you are able to obtain finance to complete the purchase. If it is an investment property, find out about potential tax issues and make sure you have a bit of extra money up your sleeve in case you can’t find tenants quickly.

5. Tax Matters

Discuss any sale or purchase you may be contemplating with your accountant or tax advisor.  There are new tax laws in place in New Zealand and you should satisfy yourself on your tax implications before you sign a contract to sell or purchase as this could save you money and complications in the future.

6. Talk to us

Talk to us at Pitt & Moore Lawyers before you sign, not after! While most agreements are conditional, it is much easier (and cheaper) if we review the Agreement before you sign on the dotted line. From our experience, it may be harder to get out of a conditional Agreement than you think.

Contact our Property Team today to discuss how we can assist you.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended as legal advice. It is important that you seek legal advice that is specific to your circumstances.

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Sian Holden

Position: Partner
DDI: +64 3 545 6711