by Robecca Cunningham
“If you have made the decision to sell your property you may be surprised to hear that you are required to have a draft contract before you (or an agent) offer it for sale. To move things along more quickly there are some things you can do.”
Selling your property begins with the Contract of Sale (Contract). Before you or the agent may offer the property to prospective purchasers, a draft Contract must be prepared which sets out the terms of the proposed agreement. What is required to prepare the contract of sale?
The prescribed documents required to be attached to the Contract will depend upon the type of property that you are selling, for example, the property may be:
- a residential house and land;
- in a strata scheme (that is, a unit);
- part of a community scheme; or
- some other type of property.
The prescribed documents are available by searching the register, however, any special conditions which may be required will depend on your circumstances, and the nature of the property being sold.
To ensure your legal practitioner or conveyancer includes relevant special conditions and disclosures in the Contract you should inform them as to:
- any alterations, additions or renovations which have been carried out on the property, which were the subject of a council approval; and
- any alterations, additions or renovations to the property which have been carried out pursuant to an owner builder permit issued within the last 7 years and 6 months;
If a Final Occupation Certificate (issued by Council up to February 2018) or an Occupation Certificate (issued by Council after that date) for the building or any additions to the building has been issued, you should ensure this is made available.
If you have signed up to a photovoltaic or solar power scheme you will need to provide details of the arrangements and rebates.
Vendors are required to warrant that a property is not affected by certain matters, unless these are specifically disclosed. You should ensure that your conveyancer or legal practitioner is informed if:
- there is any licence agreement which benefits the property, or if there is any planning agreement or other arrangement with the Council or other planning authority concerning any development at the property;
- there are any notices that you have received from Council; or any adjoining owners or authorities requiring work of any kind to be done;
- you are aware of any contamination at the property, any asbestos or fibrous cement, or flammable or combustible material including cladding in or on the property; or
- you have received correspondence which affects the property in any way including in relation to:
- any common boundary or any boundary fence between the property and the adjoining land;
- any encroachment onto the adjoining land by any building or structure on the property; or
- any encroachment on the property by any building or structure on the adjoining land.
5. there is a swimming pool on the property, in which case you will need to provide:
- a certificate of compliance for the pool issued under section 22D of the Swimming Pools Act 1992 (NSW) (not more than 3 years old); or
- an occupation certificate under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW) authorising use of the pool (issued not more than 3 years ago), together with a copy of the certificate of registration for the pool under Part 3A of the Swimming Pools Act 1992 (NSW); or
- a certificate of non-compliance issued under clause 18BA of the Swimming Pools Regulation 2008 (NSW) (which is not more than 12 months old).
Preparing to meet with your lawyer or conveyancer
Once you have made the decision to sell, it will be helpful to gather copies of the following:
- the latest Council Rates notice;
- the latest Water Rates notice;
- the list of inclusions (such as blinds, built-in wardrobes, clothes line, curtains, dishwasher, fixed floor coverings, insect screens, light fittings, range hood, stove, swimming pool equipment, external television antenna, air conditioner, security bars, security alarm system, shelving, above ground pool, pot plants or garden shed); and
- the list of exclusions (those items which you will be taking with you).
Where applicable, you should also ensure that your conveyancer or legal practitioner is provided with details of:
- notices that you have received from Council (or any other authority);
- current leases at the property;
- your mortgage;
- any caveator; and
- the survey or building information certificate.
With these instructions a contract can be drafted for your review which will enable the property to be offered for sale.