Buying a property can be a tad nerve-wracking, so to give yourself the best chance on getting an accepted offer and to reduce your stress, consult your professionals and get your ducks in a row prior to submitting your offer.
We advise that you have the Agreement checked by your legal advisor before you sign it (this is essential if it is a mortgagee sale or an estate sale);
Your legal advisor can check the Title at the same time (and search the interests registered on it, if any) ;
Get your Finance sorted. We recommend having an offer in writing from your bank for the specific property you are interested in (not just a general pre-approval);
Check with your Insurance company as to whether you can obtain insurance on the property. If you can’t get satisfactory insurance / or there are exclusions on the policy you may have difficulty with your finance;
A LIM report from the Council tells you all the information that the Council holds on the property, as well as information on the neighbouring properties and the land that affect the property. These include any building consents, code of compliance certificates for works done (after 1992), any knowledge of any weathertightness issues, any resources consents for the property or neighbouring properties, whether the property is located within the corrosion, flooding, windy, earthquake and airport space zones, etc.
A Property report contains some of the matters in a LIM report such as the building consents but does not contain anything about the actual land or neighbouring area.
A Builders report, whether it is a full written report or a walk-through builder’s report, is a must. Some builders will even cross reference the building consents/permits in the LIM/Property report with any building works. If you are provided with the Vendor’s builders report you should still have your own report or have your own builder give you specialist advice.
A Valuation is sometimes a necessity. Some banks may require avaluation if you are borrowing over a certain percentage of the value of theproperty (rateable or market value) or a private purchase.
For Unit Titled properties (Body Corporate), you should read through at least the last two AGM Minutes and Financials, the Body Corporate Rules, Long Term Maintenance Plan, Pre-Contract Disclosure Statement, any other documentation about the Body Corporate – if there are any;
Many first home buyers arealso using their Kiwisaver contributions and/or the Home Start Grant to put towards the purchase of a property. Any amounts you get from either of these two sources has to go to your lawyer’s trust account to be used for the purchase (some Kiwisaver providers will let you use your funds for the Deposit). Obtain pre-approval from your own Kiwisaver provider to give to your bank as evidence of your proposed equity. You may want Double check the time frames for these applications;
Ask questions about the property and GOOD LUCK house hunting.
Disclaimer – this article is necessarily brief and general in nature. You should seek professional legal advice for your particular circumstances.