Buying property? Then this blog is for you!!

This blog helps the property buying community to more easily share strategies, stories and helpful tips. It is an open blog. Anyone can join, contribute and invite others to join.

If you would like to talk property, please contact us:
Office: 1300 911 576
Martyn Fleming: 0400 000 822
Guy Clarke: 0409 055 128

06 August 2008

Remember, it's YOUR offer.

Contract Law 101: As buyers, you make the first move by making an offer on a property. Of course, to have legal effect, it must be in writing (verbal offers are worth the paper they're written on). If your offer is accepted by the vendor, you typically have a binding contract, subject to terms and conditions.

As a buyer, you are likely to have certain terms and conditions that meet your needs, such as finance, building and pest, due diligence, subject to prior sale, contemporaneous sale, settlement date, etc.

When drafting an offer, most buyers tell the vendor's agent (selling agent) how they want their contract to read. The vendor's agent drafts the offer and gives it to the buyer to sign.

Sound simple? It should be.

What we find remarkable is how many changes can occur during this drafting stage. We constantly see contracts where conditions have been altered, removed, periods adjusted, etc. If you sign this version, it is still your offer, so as always... buyer beware!

Tip: Do not sign your offer in the presence of the vendor or vendor's agent. Take it away and read it thoroughly. Compare it to the checklist of terms and conditions you have specified. Go over it with a fine toothcomb, even if the agent claims it was "a simple copy and paste job" and it's a "standard REIQ contract".

We have even asked why some of our conditions have been changed, and agents have given us some reasons, like "The vendor is unlikely to accept the ones you gave me", etc.

Ultimately, it is YOUR offer and you are able to submit whatever you please. If the vendor counter-offers, they are similarly allowed to alter the contract in any way they see fit. At this point, it becomes their offer. When it comes back, you are free to accept, counter-offer or reject the offer given to you by the vendor (and so it goes). If you choose to counter-offer, you again have the choice to specify whatever conditions you need (even if they were altered by the vendor).

Until someone accepts the contract without making any changes, we are only dealing with 'offers'. Again, you're free to make whatever changes you please, as it is your offer.

If you need help, call us on 1300 727 586.

Yours in property!

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