Buying or selling a property? Get advice first

September 9, 2015

in Property

iStock_000060122596_SmallBuying or selling a property is more often than not a positive and rewarding experience. However, sometimes setbacks occur and seeing your lawyer in the very early stages can help you avoid or deal with these.

You should contact your lawyer before starting the buying or selling process but definitely before signing any document to check that what you sign is right for you.

Seeing your lawyer early on can save you money and help to prevent small problems turning into big ones. It can be difficult to change the terms of a contract after it is signed, so it is important to get the right terms for your situation before you proceed.

Your lawyer can help you to understand the buying or selling process and provide independent advice on several issues including:

  • The listing agreement that you enter into with your real estate agent, whether sole agency or multiple listing suits, and the method of sale such as by tender or auction to suit you.
  • What research you should be doing in respect to the property.
  • How soon settlement should occur.
  • The timeframes that should be considered if you are using KiwiSaver funds.
  • What the rules are when a property is tenanted.
  • The payment of deposits, how much you should pay, who should hold the deposit and when it can be released.
  • Reviewing title and other documentation such as a Council LIM report to identify any potential issues.
  • Whether any special conditions should be included in the contract, such as approval of builders or engineers reports.
  • Considering whether you will need any special insurances, or whether you may encounter any issues in insuring the property (such as earthquake cover or in the case of heritage buildings) on terms satisfactory to you.
  • What it means if financial assistance is in place through the Retrofit Your Home Programme.
  • Understanding your continuing financial obligations and the differences this means for a unit title as opposed to traditional home ownership.
  • If you are considering a unit title, understanding your legal disclosure requirements if you are selling, including requirements before you even sign the contract, or what information you should receive and additional information you can request as a buyer.

It is also a good time to discuss other legal matters with your lawyer, such as whether you have a Will or Enduring Power of Attorney in place, if it is beneficial to consider setting up a trust or understanding property relationship matters.

Farry and Co. are experienced in all aspects of residential conveyancing and property law. If you require any advice or further information on the matters dealt with in this publication please contact the lawyer at Farry and Co. who normally advises you, or alternatively contact:

Lisa Oakden
09 379 0055 or 03 477 8870


The information contained in this publication is intended as a guide only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Professional advice should be sought before applying any of the information to particular circumstances. While every reasonable care has been taken in the preparation of this publication, Farry and Co. does not accept liability for any errors it may contain.

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