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Jul 31, 2017

Buying a house – YOU are responsible for the terms of the contract.

Why do people rush headlong into spending $250,000 or $300,000 plus on a house without making even the most basic attempts to protect themselves? I guess it’s because we’ve become used to the protections that consumer law brings us.

But consumer law doesn’t really apply to house purchases. The nature of the standard Contract of Sale by Offer and Acceptance used is one of “caveat emptor” or let the buyer beware. This essentially means that once you own the property, you also own any problems associated with it, so find out what they might be. Here’s a few suggestions BEFORE you sign an offer to purchase:

Make sure the offer includes the following clauses:

Without these, the property just needs to be in the same condition at settlement as it was when you inspected it before signing the offer. Take responsibility for your contract. Once you’ve entered into it, you and the seller are both bound by its very precise terms and once you’re in, it’s very hard to get out.

Disclaimer: None of the above should be considered specialist building or legal advice. Readers are advised to retain their own independent professional counsel. Which is the point to the article.
This article first appeared in The Kalgoorlie Miner on Sat 29 July 2017, under the headline "Take charge when buying"


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