Checking your property is ready for sale

Simon and Barbara had recently retired and decided it was time to put the family home on the market and downsize as the house was much too large for just the two of them now. The house and its extensive gardens required too much of their time to maintain and Simon and Barbara wanted to spend the next few years travelling while they were still able to and didn’t want the hassle of managing such a large property.
Simon had been a builder for many years and had built many homes during his working career. Since Simon and Barbara had purchased the property, Simon had completed extensive renovations on the property including adding another level to the house. Simon had obtained consent from the council for the renovations and all the work was carried out as per the consent and plans.
Simon and Barbara started their search for another property to move into and the third property Simon and Barbara looked at was perfect. It was exactly what they were looking for. Unfortunately for them the property had attracted a lot of interest from other parties and they had decided they needed to move quickly on it. They decided to offer the vendor an unconditional agreement with settlement to take place in three months’ time. They were confident that their property would be sold by then and they would have the funds to complete the purchase.
Simon and Barbara had spoken to their local real estate agent regarding the sale of their property and the agent took them through the whole selling process as they had not sold a property in over 20 years. At the real estate agent’s suggestion Simon and Barbara decided to sell the property by auction. The auction date was set for next month with settlement two months later to tie in with their purchase settlement.
The marketing campaign was in full swing and the agent had advised them that she had a lot of interested parties looking to attend the auction.
A LIM Report for the property was ordered from Council to assist purchasers with their due diligence prior to the auction. The LIM report came through within a couple of weeks of the property going on the market.
When the LIM Report was received from Council, it noted that the works carried out by Simon had not had final sign off from Council in the form of a Code Compliance Certificate. Unfortunately Simon hadn’t organised for Council to come out to complete the final inspection when the work was all completed.
Simon and Barbara now found themselves in a sticky position where they had committed themselves to purchase another property without certainty that they could resolve the lack of Code Compliance Certificate before the auction.

By: , Property Law with Rachel Lee, Davenports Harbour Lawyers

Issue 96 March 2019