FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why do I need a Settlement Agent?
What are some of the tasks a Settlement Agent undertakes during my settlement?
Search plans, title deeds and any encumbrances noted on the title, such as caveats, restrictive covenants and notifications;
Ensure the offer and acceptance contract is lodged with the Office of State Revenue for assessment of transfer duty within the specified timeframes;
Make you aware of the due dates for special conditions on your contract of sale and ensure all conditions are met within the specified time, as time is of the essence!;
Prepare settlement documentation pertinent to the transaction;
Check the signing and execution of all documents before settlement;
Liaise with banks, brokers, solicitors and other lenders to book and arrange settlement;
Contact relevant authorities to provide a change of ownership notice, including you local Council/Shire, Water Corporation, State Revenue and WA Planning Commission to advise of the change of ownership. Please note that it is your responsibility to contact your choice of electricity and gas companies to set up your own accounts (as applicable);
Attend to the adjustment of Water Rates, Shire Rates, Land Tax and Strata Levies/Insurance between the buyer and seller and ensure any unpaid rates are finalised and paid at settlement (if applicable and available);
Attend settlement on your behalf. Lodge any required transfer documents with the bank or Landgate. Collect any balance of funds and deposit into bank account or as instructed by you;
Ensure property is transferred into the buyers name after settlement;
Keep everyone involved in the settlement transaction updated at all times with regular calls and/or emails.
How long will my settlement take?
Generally, the full settlement timeline is 6-8 weeks from date of acceptance to settlement date, excluding off the plan and dealings pending the issue of new titles. Depending on whether the offer is cash or subject to finance as typically banks will take 21-28 days from acceptance to issue you formal finance approval and then another 21-28 days thereafter to prepare Mortgage documents and be in a position to settle. If your situation is different, get in touch and we’ll guide you towards the right timeframes.
My finance was just approved. What do I do now?
What are the statutory and government disbursements?
What do I do about rates?
At settlement we will ensure all outstanding rates are adjusted and paid to the end of the billing cycle. Council Rates and Land Tax (if applicable) are paid to the end of the financial year, Water Rates are paid to the end of the two-month billing cycle and Strata Levies or Insurance is paid to the end of the billing cycle whenever that may be. If you receive rates notices immediately following settlement, don’t stress, just let us know as it is very likely they were paid after settlement around the same time the rates were issued or we are holding money to pay them.
Can I inspect the property before settlement?
Yes, condition 4.5 in the Joint Form of General Conditions allows you to inspect the property on one occassion within 5 business days prior to settlement. You will need to contact and arrange this through your Real Estate Agent. This is your opportunity to inspect the property and check that it is in the same condition as when the offer was made and to ensure all special conditions as outlined in your contract of sale are satisfied.
Do I have to attend settlement?
No, you do not need to attend settlement, we do that on your behalf. Commencing early 2018 all eligible property transactions will be completed on the Electronic E-Conveyancing platform PEXA (Property Exchange Australia). Settlements that are ineligible to settle online will take place in the Perth CBD.
When do I get possession?
If the property is the sellers principle place of residence immediately before settlement, then they are to hand keys over by 12 noon the day following settlement. If it was an investment or vacant immediately before settlement, then you would be able to collect keys once you receive confirmation settlement is finalised. Settlements usually take place between 11am and 3.30pm Monday to Friday.
When will I receive funds from my sale?
When will I receive my certificate of title from a purchase?
I need to get my identification verified. Where can I do this?
Australia Post – Identity verification can be done in most Australia Post offices. Bookings may be necessary at some offices.
In person – contact our office and we can make an arrangement to meet up and complete your verification of identity.
What is title insurance?
Title Insurance is a specialised type of Insurance which provides protection to home buyers and existing property owners against certain unknown and hidden risks which may exist at the time of purchase or issues that may arise after settlement. Each title insurance policy is subject to specific terms, conditions & exclusions.
Stewart Title is our preferred title insurance provider and we recommend you contact them direct if you have any queries regarding title insurance on 1300 853 919 or visit their website www.stewart.com