Buying and selling property, whether it’s residential or commercial, is a big deal for most of our clients. Our aim is to ensure the process goes as smoothly and is as stress-free as possible.
Our lawyers [excluding our Court lawyers] can all help you with this type of work so have a read of the information below and head over to Our People page to find someone who can assist you.
Selling – Let’s start at the start
The best time to seek legal advice is before you even list your property.
You’ll need to decide whether you want to market and sell the property yourself, or use the services of real estate agent.
Both options bring with them important considerations.
How can we help?
If you’re planning a private sale, you won’t have some of the protections and tools you would had you used a real estate agent. That by no means precludes a successful sale, but it’s vital you make an informed decision, and are fully aware of the pitfalls.
Most vendors opt to sell through a real estate agency. You’ll need to sign an agency agreement – and it’s imperative you know exactly what you’re signing up for.
Just some of the problems we see from vendors:
- Paying way more commission than they intended
- Confusion around exclusive and multi-agency agreements
- Contracted in for longer than intended
- Not understanding their obligations around extra costs – e.g. marketing
Did you know?
Under recent changes, there is a post-signing “cooling off period” around agency agreements. Once an agent delivers a completed agency agreement, you have until 5pm the following working day to withdraw.
Before you confirm the agreement, you should seek independent legal advice to ensure you know and understand everything you are signing up for.
Understanding sales methods
While your real estate agent can provide you good information on the sales methods open to you, and the relative merits of each, there are specific, and differing, legal considerations for vendors depending on which option you choose.
- Private treaty
- Deadline treaty
- What you need to know – before buyers
Many vendors think of due diligence – especially around a property’s potential problems – as solely the domain of buyers.
Unfortunately, vendors often find out too late, via the buyer, that there’s something wrong with their property. They’re either left chasing their tail trying to fix it … confronting a reduced selling price … or watching a promising deal sink unnecessarily.
Vendors can easily find themselves on the back foot during negotiations. Let’s face it, most buyers want to pay less for a property – and there’s nothing like a problem or two they unearth during due diligence to lessen your bargaining power.
By giving your property the once over first, you’ll buy yourself time and options to rectify problems without compromising your position. What’s more, you can set your property apart from the rest, by proactively providing potential buyers certain critical information.
We can help you decide what you need to explore sourcing, including:
Land Information Memorandums
A Builder’s Report
An Independent Valuation
Code of Compliance Certificates
Confirmation of District Plan compliance