Reports are the real-estate market has turned and we are seeing the first rises since 2017. It’s a new financial year, interest rates are down and signs of life in the market. Cold weather is still with us so good deals may be available before a rebound in Spring. If you’re renewing interest in the market, here are:


1.  Check you are purchasing exactly what you think you are purchasing

A house isn’t just 4 walls and a roof. Inclusions like built-in wardrobes, oven, stove, light fittings, air conditioning units and tv mountings must be specified in the contract.

Sometimes items you think will be considered fixtures are removed before you move in. To avoid the shock of moving into a new home with its microwave removed, or the air conditioning suddenly missing, your solicitor can ensure that a contract includes all the items you expect and help you avoid nasty surprises.

2.  See that you can get the right development approval

You aren’t always buying a property for what it is, but instead for what it could be.

Before committing to your grand vision, you should get advice on the Planning and Development Controls. A review of the contract includes letting you know about Council development controls, whether the property is heritage listed, whether easements or covenants exist, if contaminated land is an issue and whether Sydney Water requires you to keep parts of your land accessible.

You may think you can build a pool in that nice big backyard but that won’t be possible if there is an easement or covenant in the way.

3.  Check for hidden defects

Contract reviews may unearth problems with the Vendor, land tax, unapproved works, and other matters that influence whether or not the property is right for you at the price that has to be paid.

Make sure you have the reports you need from the professionals that can advise you – strata inspection reports, building reports, pest inspections. We can certainly let you know how they affect the property you want to purchase.

4.  Know the price!

The price on the front page of the contract might not always represent the price to be paid. Prices can be adjusted because of land tax, GST or a special levy that is payable.

Adjustments can alter due to when a property is sold, who the vendor is and who it is sold to. Careful amendment may be required to ensure you pay the right amount and know exactly what you are paying.

5.  Ensure that your rights are protected

The standard sale of land contract requires each party do certain things at certain times.

If either party fails to perform in accordance with the contract, there may be delays or penalties payable. It is also possible that the contract may be ended through the fault of a party. To minimize the risk, we can act for you to protect your rights and ensure your contract meets your needs.

Penelope Wright, Senior Solicitor, Bay Legal

Should you, a relative or a friend, require assistance with a contract review and assistance purchasing a property, please contact Penelope Wright, Senior Solicitor, Bay Legal on 02 9344 0682 or