Buying Your Home Explained – Part 2
No matter if you are buying, selling, leasing or building, the Conveyancing team at Baldock Stacy & Niven can guide and help you every step of the way. Property deals can be complex and the sale or purchase of a family home can be very daunting as it is often the largest transaction you will ever make.
The Conveyancing team at Baldock Stacy & Niven Orange has decades of experience and local knowledge and know how to navigate through all types of property transactions.
The team have put together a number of information sheets to help explain the numerous steps and terms used when buying or selling a residential property.
Today’s post sees Part 2 of Buying Your Home explained. (Click here if you would like to read Buying Your Home Explained Part 1)
Buying a Property
Stamp duty is payable on the price being paid for the property including any furniture listed in the contract. Stamp duty must be paid within three months of signing the contract or mortgage. However most lenders require you to hand over, at settlement, a stamped transfer, so the transfer and mortgage can be lodged immediately after settlement.
Please check with us for current stamp duty rates as there are variables depending on your circumstances and the property in question – eg: first home buyers, new home vs existing.
As a guide to the amount of stamp duty payable the Office of State Revenue on 30/10/17 advised the following:
Purchase Price Stamp Duty Payable
Council & Other Rates & Taxes
The usual provision in the contract is that yearly council rates should be adjusted by the seller and buyer at the date of settlement or possession.
We will calculate the proportion of rates payable by the seller up to settlement and the amount payable by the seller from settlement until the end of the rating period (typically 30th June). Outstanding rates become the responsibility of the buyer after settlement so it is important they are paid at settlement.
Water Service Charges
As with Council rates, the usual provision in the contract is that water service charges should be adjusted as at the date of settlement or possession. Water Authority charges start from 1 July each year and bills are issued quarterly. Outside the Sydney Water and Hunter Water areas, Local Councils are responsible for water rates.
We obtain a “Section 41 Certificate” that shows the service charges, the environmental levy and the water usage charges for the current quarter and if the account has been paid.
Usually water usage is adjusted on settlement on the basis of the average water used over the previous period.
A person’s privately owned principal residence is exempt (where the land value is less than $1 million) and so are lands used for primary production, provided they are not owned by a company or trust. If there is any Land Tax owing, we ensure it is correctly apportioned (similar to council rates) and is paid on or before settlement.
To buy a Strata Title unit, townhouse or villa is to buy into a small, democratically governed community of owners. When purchasing under Strata title you in fact purchase airspace in the building. The building itself and the common areas are owned by the Owners Corporation – all the owners in the strata plan are members of this Owners Corporation.
Normally the Owner’s Corporation appoints an agent or representative to run the stata plan and manage the building, common areas and surrounds. Each owner pays a levy to the Owners Corporation which facilitates the maintenance, building insurance and general running of the building.
Buying under strata title is much the same as purchasing other property but there are some other factors to consider – like the by-laws and conditions attached to the shared or common use areas of the building, quarterly levies and condition of the building structure and surrounds.
BS&N can arrange an inspection report which will detail the following:
- Strata Roll – details of the owner and any mortgagee or tenant
- records of Notices or Orders served on the owners’ corporation
- books of account – whether they are kept properly, and details from the last balance sheets of the Administrative Fund (for recurrent running expenses) and the Sinking Fund (provided for long term maintenance of the building)
- the amount of the current levies for the Administrative and Sinking funds and any special levies made for either fund or any information about proposals for special levies or increase in levies
- details of all the insurance cover including fire, storm and tempest cover on the building, and public risk to cover injury and property damage, and workers’ compensation cover
- by-laws – The by-laws including any special conditions, for instance about the keeping of animals
- managing agent – details of the managing agent
- where the Title Deed for the common property and the Common Seal for the owners’ corporation are kept
- minutes of meetings of the Council of the owners’ corporation
Baldock Stacy & Niven Conveyancing
Conveyancing and property transactions still carry some risk and there are many conveyancing services available for you to choose from. With Baldock Stacy & Niven Conveyancing you will have expert, cost-effective conveyancing support backed up by a complete legal team that can deal with virtually any eventually.
We work with you every step of the way, from document preparation and lodgement to representing you in negotiations right through to settlement.
We do not take shortcuts or cut corners. We carefully prepare, review and handle all related documentation and scrutinize all details to ensure that your interests are completely protected.
We pride ourselves on our high level of client service. From the very beginning of negotiations to the final settlement we keep you informed every step of the way in easy-to-understand language. We react quickly to your queries and requests and will provide you with advice you can rely on — every aspect of the sale will be looked after efficiently and cost effectively.
BS&N Conveyancing – Reliable, personalized and cost-effective.
The material in this information page is a general guide only and is not a replacement for legal or other advice. No person should act or not act solely on the basis of this information sheet. It is not legal advice and your possession of this information sheet does not create a client/lawyer relationship. If you would like to discuss your particular circumstances please contact Baldock Stacy & Niven.