A Guide to Selling a Property

30-10-2012    |    Resource

At Lamrocks we can take the stress out of the legal process by managing your sale transaction and negotiations on your behalf so that you can focus on the task at hand!

The Contract

When you sell your property, a Contract of Sale must be prepared before you start marketing your property to potential buyers.

The contract is an important document that includes:

  • the sale price of your property;
  • the details of the parties involved, that is the seller (vendor) and the buyer (purchaser);
  • the relevant information about the property including any items you are leaving with the property such as light fittings, clothesline, window coverings and so on;
  • the amount of deposit required to secure the sale;
  • when settlement will take place (usually after a period of six weeks); and,
  • any special conditions associated with the sale.

Your solicitor will prepare the contract, making sure you understand all of the conditions and clauses included, and then liaise with the buyers’ solicitor to ensure all of the details are correct and make any necessary amendments as a result of negotiations with the buyer.

Appointing an Agent

Appointing a real estate agent is an important part of the sale process. Your agent will be responsible for marketing your property to potential purchasers and will be the first point of contact in relation to the sale. He/she should be someone your feel comfortable with, and someone you trust to look after your number one asset.

A few important things to remember when appointing a real estate agent include:

  • All real estate agents are legally obliged to tell you their fee and provide you with an Agency Agreement at the time you appoint them
  • Most Agency Agreements are exclusive – which means that once you sign the Agreement you cannot employ another Agent until the initial agreement period runs out
  • Agents cannot market a property for sale without first having a Contract for Sale in their possession – which means you need to have the Contract drawn-up and sent to the Agent before they can show anyone your property.

If you have any questions regarding the agent’s role, the Property Team at Lamrocks would be happy to help.

Exchange and Cooling Off

The term “Exchange” means that both the purchaser and the seller have agreed on the deal, signed a copy of the contract and given it to each other. Once an exchange takes place, the property is no longer on the market and, as a seller, you are legally bound to the deal.

In NSW, contracts are often exchanged in the real estate agent’s office and the purchaser has a period of five business days after the exchange within which they can pull out of the deal by providing you with written notice. This period is called the “cooling off” period. 

Once the cooling off period has expired however, the full deposit (which is usually 10% of the purchase price) is payable, and the purchaser can no longer pull out of the deal. The remaining balance of the purchase price is paid upon settlement.


Settlement is the last step in the selling/buying process. On the day of settlement, your solicitor meets with the other party’s solicitor and your bank or lending institution to arrange final payment of the purchase price and the transfer of title deeds.

Once this process is complete, the Real Estate Agent is notified so that the keys to the property can be released and the buyer can move in or take possession.


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