Congratulations! You have found your buyer and are ready to make things official through a process called settlement.
What is settlement?
Settlement is the official legal and financial process of transferring property ownership from you to your buyer. The process takes place over what’s called a settlement period, which is usually between 30 to 90 days, as agreed by you and your buyer. The settlement period begins on the day the contracts are signed and ends on settlement day.
Settlement day is the day you’ve been waiting for, the day that everything becomes official! You will receive the balance of the purchase price from your buyer and they will become the new registered owner of the property.
Here are three things to consider during settlement to ensure your sale goes through seamlessly.
1 - The Final Inspection
Before the property sale is final, your buyer is entitled to one final inspection (also known as a pre-settlement inspection). This is your buyer’s last chance to walk-through the property and raise any final issues before officially taking ownership of the property.
The purpose of the inspection is to ensure the property is in the same condition as it was when they signed the contract, and that any agreed repairs, inclusions, and/or inclusions are in order. As such, you should use the settlement period to complete any outstanding tasks as per the contract of sale.
2 - Deep Clean and Complete Moving Admin Tasks
Once you reach settlement, it’s moving time.
After the whirlwind of sorting through your possessions and packing up, your property will need a deep clean before the final inspection. This means tackling the less frequent cleaning tasks, such as washing the walls and steam-cleaning the carpets. Making your property shine will ensure your buyer has zero complaints and is nothing but excited for settlement day.
The settlement period is also the perfect time to complete your moving-related admin tasks. These may include arranging house & contents insurance for your new home, re-directing your mail and any expected parcel deliveries, and applying a change of address on all your bills and utility services.
3 - Timing Your Move
The final inspection usually occurs within 7 days prior to settlement day. To avoid unnecessary stress leading up to your settlement day, we suggest timing your move to occur a day or two beforehand. If there is a time-lag between settlement day and the date on which you move into your new home, consider arranging short-term accommodation.
Wrapping it Up
Settlement is arguably one of the most important parts of the sale process. With much to do and a finite period before settlement day, there is no doubt you will have your hands full until the sale is official. Thankfully, after considering this checklist and organising yourself in advance, you will be very well-placed for a seamless settlement process.