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What role does a lawyer play in buying a home?

More than likely, buying a home will be the biggest purchase that you will ever make. So it’s important to get it right from the beginning.

You’ve got your mortgage advisor on your side already, you’ve been pre-approved and you’ve found a home you love. But what’s next? It’s important early on in house hunting that you search for a lawyer who can help you navigate the legal aspect of buying (or building) a home. They’ll take care of the paperwork and make sure you are protected when signing important documents.

When choosing a lawyer to represent you, it’s important to look for someone that specialises in property law. There are a number of law firms around and it’s important to do your research. Some operate on a price per hour basis while others offer a fixed fee for buying or selling a property. Working with a fixed fee can help home buyers manage the costs around buying a home and means you are left with no surprises! Be sure to ask your law firm straight up how much it might cost, so you can factor this in.

Your lawyer will be the person who will clarify all of the details in the sale and purchase agreement. They will also look over the LIM (Land Information Memorandum) and point out any potential issues with things like cross lease, body corporate fees or the like. Depending on the type of property you are purchasing, there could be limitations to what you wish to do to it. For example in a new residential development there may be covenants around what colour you may paint your home or the type of fence you put up. If you are looking to buy an apartment there can be rules around pets, or having to gain body corporate consent to install a heat pump. It is your lawyer's job to point out all of these things and ensure you are happy with these terms before you agree to buy the home.

If there is anything you are unsure of during this process, be sure to ask your lawyer - they are there to explain it all and to make sure you fully understand what you are agreeing to purchase.

If you would like recommendations for a lawyer, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here at Better Choice. We work with a number of industry professionals and are always happy to recommend someone to help.



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