First-home buyers and, indeed, all home buyers in Australia have a considerable number of responsibilities as far as government and financial administration that must be satisfactorily carried out in order to complete the purchase of a home. One such responsibility is conveyancing.
What is Conveyancing?
The Macquarie Dictionary defines conveyance as “the transfer of property from one person to another”. From a legal perspective, the term conveyancing means taking care of the considerable background work and document preparation required by law for this conveyance of property.
The Conveyancing Process in More Detail
As a first-home buyer, you’re not expected to be familiar with the conveyancing process, which is complicated and time-consuming. It can involve all of the following steps and more:
- Reviewing and exchanging the contracts
- Arranging necessary property inspections
- Conducing any other background checks
- Handling various aspects of the financing (deposit, stamp duty, etc.)
- Preparing the mortgage agreement
- Overseeing the change of title
- Attending the settlement.
Can You Do Your Own Conveyancing?
Technically, yes. However, this isn’t recommended – especially not for first-home buyers – as by doing your own conveyancing you are accepting all legal responsibility for a job that is far from simple. It is advisable instead to use a licenced conveyancer or solicitor who will have been through the entire process many times before and be aware of the potential pitfalls, and who will likely have a superior level of coverage than what you would have if going solo.
Is Conveyancing Expensive?
Short answer: not for the degree of service you will receive. If you’re worried, as a first-home buyer, that there may be hidden charges, don’t be – every aspect of the cost will be clearly explained and recorded. Leaving the conveyancing to an expert provides three major benefits:
1. No part of this essential process will be missed.
2. If there are unforeseen complications, the conveyancer/solicitor will know exactly what to do to avoid any legal problems.
3. You will have the advantage of being able to ask expert related questions that arise in the course of buying your first home, drawing on their wealth of knowledge.
When Should You Hire a Conveyancer/Solicitor?
Many people say you should employ a conveyancer or solicitor as soon as you are seriously house-hunting. This way, once you find what appears to be the ideal property, they can go over the contract of sale. They will investigate whether there are any unpaid rates or taxes associated with the property and if there are any developments planned for the area which could affect it. On that note, if you have changes in mind for the house, e.g. installing a swimming pool, they will check that there are no restrictions that would prevent these.
Need Conveyancing in Bathurst or Central West NSW?
For more information on the topic of conveyancing or to arrange a consultation with a solicitor who is highly experienced in the area, you can contact us at Cunninghams – The Law Practice on (02) 6332 9591 or by emailing . You can also submit an online enquiry via our website.