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Delayed settlement – buyer’s and vendor’s rights explained.

by Chris Lang on November 13, 2009

Frustrated woman pulling her hair outWhen your settlement is being delayed, this is a big problem. There are too many things to look after when moving home, and if the date shifts, the same work you’ve already done arranging everything around your settlement date doubles or triples.

What’s more, nobody is expecting this to happen, so when it hits – it hits people hard. If a buyer is renting a house, while he’s waiting for his settlement date, a delayed settlement (by vendor) means that he needs to extend his lease, which may not be that easy on a couple of day’s notice, re-arrange the removalist, re-arrange the disconnection and re-connection of the utilities, re-arrange the redirect of mail, take another day off at work, etc. These are just a few examples of the amount of pain a delayed settlement can put you through. And the first reaction to a situation like this is a question:

“Can they really do this to me? What are my rights here?”

A couple of days ago I received a letter from a first home buyer who was asking these questions, and decided to write a short explanation of buyer’s and vendor’s rights, because there sure are more people out there, wondering what their rights and options are in a delayed settlement.

Delayed settlement – from a buyer’s point of view

Buyers need to know that most contracts allow the vendors delay the settlement for 14 days past the settlement date without a penalty. There is a particular clause, which you can easily find – if you know what to look for.

Also, as a buyer, you’d want the contract of sale to specify what you’d like to happen if the vendor delays the settlement beyond those 14 days – in case you decide for the vendor to settle, as opposed to taking him to the court or terminating the contract and claiming back your deposit.

Make no mistake – if a buyer delays a settlement, most contracts of sale make sure vendor’s interests are covered, by charging the buyer default penalty rates. There is a specified period during which the penalty interest rates are charged, and after that it gets worse, as a vendor can cancel the contract and sell the property to someone else. To give you an estimate of costs, I have heard of buyers paying from $1000 to $5000 for a delayed settlement.

I’m sure you won’t like hearing this, but there are even more costs a buyer can incur if they are at fault for the delayed settlement – the conveyancers / solicitors can charge a client extra if the settlement doesn’t go through as planned. Some even would go to the extreme of abandoning clients when things are not going smoothly, and while I wouldn’t wish this to my worst enemy, I still feel that people need to know these things.

Have you ever experienced problems because of a delayed settlement? Share your story – leave a comment here.

photo source

{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

ses September 11, 2013 at 3:53 pm

Hi

I have bought property, paid deposit now and settlement is on 31st Oct 13 but agent informed me that tenants who lives at property has tenancy agreement until Jan 2014 and they do not want to move out.

In contract of sale, its clearly mention Vacant property, which is i’m not getting on settlement date, wondering what are my rights here ? can i claim any compensation.

at present i’m tenant at different property and my lease ending in Dec 13, but i have had arrangement to transfer lease to my friend name if settlement happen on 31st oct.

please advise. thanks you.
ses.

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ses September 17, 2013 at 10:00 am

any advise regarding above ?

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bilbo baggins November 1, 2013 at 5:15 am

IF you are not being delivered vacant possession, this is a breach of the contract terms. You are entitles to cancel the contract, with refund of your deposit.

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Lou Paolacci December 18, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Client has given me a COS, vendor signature on one page, and purchaser signature on another page, the purchaser signature has the full COS, the vendor is on a single page.
1. is this a legal binding COS
2. if COS remains as I have it, and settlement date is passed is my client up foe late interest?

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Hire Professional Lawyers January 9, 2014 at 4:01 pm

In this blog, you have explained very well about the rights of both buyers and vendors. Thanks for the detailed information.

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mathew March 31, 2014 at 4:30 pm

Hi,
i am a buyer of a property that settles soon, all paper work and finance sorted, the vendor is away overseas and has all furniture in house except personables.
If the furniture remains after settlement what are my rights to claim or get rid of furniture ?

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chris May 18, 2014 at 1:04 am

hi. we bought an off the plan appartment in 2011. started preparing for settlement nicely in time early this year. the valuation of the property came back lower than expected and the funds fom the bank were some 8000 short. we asked for an extention of settlement in order to give us time to find extra funds. the solicitor requested same and would advise me in due couse, but never did. when i rang to find out what happened with our request,the solicitor sounded slightly freaked out as if she had totally forgotten about it. later that day she emailed me that we had until the 9th ( 3 days) to settle. because we will now settle on the 19th they charge me 6000,- interest penalties which we cannot afford. If they had informed me in a timely fashion of the outcome of our request of extension, we would not have waited for our second lender, but simply arranged for a credit card asap. What are my rights ???? This is really upsetting and we do not have the 6000,-

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Henry Jones June 16, 2014 at 6:21 pm

There are many things to look after when moving home, and if the date shifts, the same work you’ve already done arranging everything around your settlement date doubles or triples.Good explanation.!!

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ken wall June 22, 2014 at 3:36 pm

we are in the process of buying a property and settlement is 7 weeks overdue. due to vendors. our solicitor is charging extra for extra work. can we claim the extra money from the vendor. we are already deducting rent from the settlement figure from the time of the original settlement date.

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Chris Lang June 22, 2014 at 9:15 pm

Hi Ken,the answer would depend on what your contract of sale says, is there a clause specifying who is responsible for the costs the buyer incurs when the settlement is delayed because of the vendor?

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deny July 31, 2014 at 4:45 pm

l bought a house vendor delayed 2 weeks after first settlement date. Can l get any rent or any money for this 2 weeks.

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Jeannine September 15, 2014 at 7:22 pm

We sold our Mothers house recently settlement was on the 4th August 2014 2 weeks after this date my sister passed away and I rang the solicitor to tell them of her passing and to tell them to put her share in her account the solicitor said she couldn’t believe we hadn’t been paid yet. we have been sent a few papers to sign but no money yet. It is now 15th September I know if I was late with payment it would be a different story.

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Maxine November 10, 2014 at 11:07 am

We have bought a house at auction with settlement due on the 24th Nov (2 weeks away). Circumstances Totally unforeseen, my partner has been dismissed from work. Our bank application has been submitted 2 days prior to this happening. I am confident he will find good paying work immediately and am unsure if I should bring this to the banks immediate attention as it will eliminate finance options.
If a buyer is charged vendors interest/penalty rates for delaying settlement, how are these costs calculated and charged to the buyer. Also at what point can they terminate the contract.
Any advise would be wonderful as I am very unsettled over the risk of losing our 10% deposit.
Thank you

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Chris Lang November 12, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Hi Maxine, buying at auction is unconditional, so even if the bank would have decided to decline your loan application you would still be bound by your contract of sale. The penalty rates for a delayed settlement would be calculated according to your contract – it should specify the amount and time frame. Might be a good idea to speak to your conveyancer or solicitor to get a comprehensive explanation of your particular situation. Hope everything works out with your partner’s new job, good luck to him!

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Steven November 12, 2014 at 1:00 pm

I bought off the plan in feb. Settlement date was 20th of July. It’s now the 12th of November. Our house is finished and is just laying empty. The plans of sub division were only lodge one week ago. settlement is now 16 weeks overdue. Everyone tells me I should be getting paid for every week overdue but I can’t see anywhere in my contract about such payment. all my dealings with my convayancer and estate agent(personal friend) no one has mentioned anything about compensation. It’s lucky it’s my first home and I’m still living under mum and dad for now. If I was paying rent I would be stuffed.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated

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Chris Lang November 12, 2014 at 3:04 pm

Hi Steven, I agree – you’re lucky things worked out so that you don’t have to pay rent, 16 weeks is quite a delay! Who prepared the contract of sale for you? Would be a good idea to contact that person and ask them this exact question.

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Shazia November 13, 2014 at 7:15 am

Hi , I have purchased a villa in auction, settlement was at 10-Nov-2014. My previous lender was not ready to discharge and current lender came very late to settlement. so settlement didn’t happen at that day. Its reschedule to 14-11-14, but I am penalized 4 days interest($465).
I was not my fault , it was bank’s fault . Please any suggestions , how to avoid it.

Please help me…

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John November 13, 2014 at 4:43 pm

My family have been trying to sell my deceased fathers house now for close to 18 months. The buyers have been granted 8 extensions so far and seem reluctant to settle. In the contract was a clause that settlement wouldn’t occur until after the large alottment was subdivided in half as they were going to build units. To do this the existing house had to be demolished which they have done. They have spent a considerable amount of money on the alottment but have not paid us a cent. They have paid a non refundable deposit for extending the contract twice. If we stand firm on a date on settlement and they still won’t settle are we breaking the contract if we put the place back up for sale? And would we loose the deposit? This is causing a great deal of frustration as the estate can’t be settled until the house is sold.

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Shayne November 24, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Hi
We have purchased a property and the settlement has crashed because the vendor says her mortgagee wasn’t ready.
Settlement was set for the 21st of nov it is now the 24th nov.
We have put in our 14 day notice in today..once the 14 days is up can they cancel our contract?
We want this property but we also need to hurry the process up as our living arrangements need to change.
The property is vacant she does not live there.

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Karen November 30, 2014 at 12:48 pm

1. what will happen when the buyer is not ready to buy 3 days to the final settlement??
-As far as i know our solicitor will charge him penalty since he is the one causing the delay. but it is possible for the buyer to back out after 14 days??? His reason for the delay was about finance ???

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Chris Lang November 30, 2014 at 2:26 pm

Hi Karen, sorry to hear about the buyer delaying settlement. What will happen depends on what’s written in your contract, but if it’s a standard one, then the buyer may lose their deposit (which you will get to keep) and they also lose their right to purchase your property.

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Inban December 10, 2014 at 10:21 pm

My land settlement was on last Monday. My site everything is ready. My broker and myself keep informing my conveyance to book a settlement time and him to send transfer of land document to bank. We are keep informing him for more than 2 week. My conveyancer not replying my email and also not responding my calls. Even if he answer the call, he is very rude, not giving any information at all.

On the settlement day morning he rang me and said that bank need one more day for settlement, nothing wrong settlement will be on tomorrow. Little later my land agent informed me that vendor’s solicitor are trying to contact my conveyencer and they need my land title of registration. Then only I realized that he is not doing anything.

Then when me and my broker contacted bank for variation, they said that my converyencer send title of land on the settlement day and that document is not accessible. Then I ring him back to informed him, he was rude. Still he said that settlement is next day, and he did not want to talk to me, he said that he is busy, and he will call back end of the day. He didn’t want me to call him back. After I requested several time over the email, he send me a copy of the title of land which is not accessible. It is in the difficult format of PDF version. Some how I manage to convert that to normal PDF and send it to my Broker and my broker submitted to bank. Broker also requested back for the escalation process and somehow after 2 days settlement is ready.
At the mean time, when I check with my land agent to make sure everything ok in other side. They told me that vendor’s solicitor still not received anything from my conveyancer. They want my convayencer to send land transfer ASAP. Priviosly, I asked my convayencer that did he inform the settlement delay matter to Vendor’s solicitor, he said yes. But Vendor solicitor said they left many messages and email, but no response from him. They also informed me that I will be penalty if this is keep going like this…

After my several email, I told my conveyancer to get speak to Vendor’s solicitor and get some days of extension with no penalty. He did so. I got extension up to friday, if I fail to do so, then I have to pay the penalty interest from Monday.

Finally everything is done, and bank is ready to settle now. When we informed him to book the settlement, he haven’t done anything. Bank is ready and waiting for his call. No response for my email , Later in the evening, when I ring him, He was very very rude, ” Don’t call me anymore, I already book it, and I don’t need to tell you when, it will happen when it will happen…”, when I said that I need to know the time and how much do I need to keep it in my bank, he was very angry and yelling me ” Go away, don’t call me anymore”. So bad.

Once again i check with the back, they said settlement not booked yet. when I call my vendor’s solicitor, she said that she have not received anything from in regards to settlement booking. Also she said that the Transfer of land which he send previous day, was not completed, and she fixed all the rest for him. He also didn’t do the title search and finally bank did it. I am not sure which part of the world is he in.

I was stressed out and when I read the product reviews about his conveyancing services(urban edge conveyancing ), It was terrible. Then I decided to find another conveyancer. I send him an email that I am not happy with the service, also explained him situation and I do not need his service anymore. with in 5 minutes, he send me a invoice with full price and asked me to pay within 7 days, otherwise he will take legal action against me. The only job he did was the incomplete transfer of land document and delayed my settlement.

Once I replied him that you have not yet book the settlement with bank, not doing your proper job, no title search and in complete land doc, not contacting vendor’s solicitor….. He is clever that he rang bank asap and book settlement, but still he didn’t let me know anything. Broker informed by bank. May be he wanted to keep some proof to get his money from me.

When I read the comments about his service, it is terrible. I am helpless. where can I complain about him. Do I need to pay him fully? Dose he have a rights to take legal actions against me if I do not pay him? I have all the proof that what doggy work he did to me. I do not want delay my settlement anymore. please advice me.

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Aaron December 18, 2014 at 9:38 am

We are selling our home, the original settlement date was the 1/12/14, we were then informed that the buyer requests an extension till the 12/12/14 which we accomodate, at 10.30am on the 12th we get a phone requesting an extension till the 17th which wasn’t an issue as we had prepaid accomodation till the 17th, removals had been on the 11th, we have now been informed that they need an extension till the 23rd, we have prepaid accomodation in Brisbane and also made a deposit on a vehicle that we are purchasing here in cairns. Now we won’t be able to use the accomodation we prepurchased in Brisbane which now is non refundable, we now have nowhere to stay from the 19th we have no furniture in our house as its already gone we have no more funds to stay in a hotel as we used our savings to prepurchase accomodation in Brisbane and put a deposit on a vehicle in cairns which now I’m in breach of contract for, if the settlement does go ahead on the 23rd we won’t see any funds till after Christmas or early new year. Is there any avenues we can take to get this mess rectified, our solicitor has no idea what the delay is, I’m starting to get really concerned now as we only have 24hrs to find alternative accomodation Can they request an extension on the day of settlement from the 12th to the 17th and now the 23rd. We have three children so I can’t expect them to sleep on the floor in a house with no utilities this is wrong as I would expect the seller should be protected from a situation such as this.

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Chris Lang December 19, 2014 at 8:40 pm

Hi Aaron,

So sorry to hear about the problem with settlement. You will be able to claim compensation from the buyer for expenses you wouldn’t have if they didn’t delay settlement, but in the meanwhile you need to take care of your family, as any compensation will take time to get. You can’t force the buyer to settle, unfortunately, you can only let them know there will be consequences and that you intend to enforce your rights as per your contract of sale. This webpage has some useful info for your situation http://www.lawyersconveyancing.com.au/faq/settlement/.
Hope things work out soon, and in your favour!
Cheers,
Chris.

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Susan Haynes December 31, 2014 at 11:53 pm

Thank you. A bit of honesty for once. Settlement should have taken place for me on 29 December, according to the Contract of Sale. This didn’t happen at the fault of the vendors. Now I know they have 14 days more without penalty, so I’ve made plans to expect this, as all communication from all parties has stopped with me now !!!

Cheers

Sue

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Chris Lang January 1, 2015 at 2:12 pm

Well done Sue! It’s very annoying to have the settlement delayed, but you’ve done your best in this situation. Hope there won’t be any more delays and your move goes smoothly.

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new baby and homeless February 6, 2015 at 10:51 pm

My partner and I put a contract in place back in November to purchase a brand new built unit. At the time I was 6mths pregnant. The title was issued on this property on the 11th December and we were then given a settlement date of 8th January. We are currently renting and had a lease with 9 months left on it so we started the hunt for new tenants. We found someone to take over our lease starting as of 14th February. As the 8th Jan approached, we got a call saying the vendors couldn’t settle then ad changed the date to the 15th Jan. We were fine with this. The day of the 14th January our solicitors called and advised us that settlement would not be going ahead as the vendor needs to refinance (secure loan on two houses on strata title with 4 parties on the title, need to spilt the title to 2 parties on each title and separate the loans!), we were advised this would take a couple of weeks. Here we are now, 3 weeks later, I gave birth 4 days ago and we have to be out of our rental on the 12th Feb! We have issued them with a 14 days to complete and they don’t think it is going to happen in this period. Any advise on what we can do, and what rights we might have in this situation? We will have to walk away from this as our finance also expires on the 20th Feb and it isn’t possible for another extension and we aren’t in a position to re apply for the finance now that I am on maternity leave and we have another dependant.
Help!

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Tina February 21, 2015 at 11:39 am

Hi, I have purchase brand new townhouse and vendor’s solicitor told the settlement had delayed due to tittle has not been registered. (settlement date 13/2/2015)
For the delayed of settlement according to my conveyance. In contract of sale, I did not sign any penalty interest or the rental lease of payment.
I realize I have make a mistake to deal with conveyance instead of lawyer.
For my conveyance an email ” they have called the vendor’s solicitor and been told the settlement date is anticipated to be in early April” If this happen again delay, what should I do?
Also, for a free title of property, should I have a title before the payment?
Am I have a right to change the conveyance to lawyer now, since I have deal with my conveyance?

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sue offner March 5, 2015 at 9:50 pm

hi, just wanted to know have signed contracts for the sale of our house in October 2014 and it is now march and the deposit has just been paid. the price of the house has gone up by 100,000 can I pull out of this sale

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ingrid lama June 23, 2015 at 12:18 am

Hello. I’ve just had a buyer interested in buying our investment property. We were supposed to receive our unconditional contract papers signed by thier solicitors and sent to our solicitor by the 22nd of July 2015 . we never recieved any papers from their soliçitor.We are afraid now that they will pull out of contact now but their was no indication of this happening. What are our rights now ?? And can they pull out?? Is their any way we can extend the unconditional contract in case they want to inspect the property or do any other checks as they sydney buyers and we are in Queensland?? Please help !! Thanks 🙂

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Ashley July 1, 2015 at 4:28 pm

Hello,

I am really interested in a property but the sellers won’t be moving into their new home for 6 months. My tenancy ends in 4 months. What can I do or what can the agent do?

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Lisa August 12, 2015 at 8:22 pm

My parents purchased a property that was supposed to settle June 9th. Before we purchased the property I had our conveyancer check the contract and she said it was all fine.
2 months later we still haven’t settled due to the property not having a title due to plans of subdivision not being registered yet.
My parents are at their wits end as they are wanting to start their retirement and are homeless.
The vendor said we can pay rent for one month with a licences agreement but we run the risk of them not getting the title and in 12 months they can terminate the contract and resell the property leaving my parents in limbo. What can we do? This is very stressful for them and my parents wouldn’t mind pulling out of the contract an looking for something else but we can’t afford to lose the deposit we have paid in full. The terms of the contract were never explained to us so we weren’t aware of the issues involved. Can you offer any advice?

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Leanne September 9, 2015 at 11:02 am

Deposit of $1000 only was paid at signing of contract as they wanted early settlement and would pay full amount then. Have since found out that that deposit was not paid despite agent saying it had on contract.
Settlement occurred on Sept 1. All cheques used for settlement were bank cheques. From 4th September I have been receiving letters from my bank etc that these cheques were stopped by the purchasers bank. Hence no money has been received and they have the titles. Where do I stand.

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julie October 29, 2015 at 2:01 am

It is oct.28th and my settlement date is supposed to be tomorrow… so today my bf calls about it and they said they arent sure of the date now, it has been a rough month with this house issue. I have na apartment my lease ends the 32st, so where is this going to leave me and my family my daughter my cats all of my stuff, homeless, because they decide last minute they may not have all the paperwork sent and done. Its been three months with it, i lost my job so date moved to the end of the month we had to have a co signer, its always bad after bad for me none stop,leading up to me and my family having nowhere to go now becuase of them, how do they have a right to tell me last minute, daybefore ,three days before my lease ends that they dont have the paperwork over and all. Are they allowed to do this, what steps do i take?

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nicky November 9, 2015 at 1:18 pm

Hi

We have been living in our property under licences for 13 months now as the vendor delayed settlement, our COS states 18 months for sub division to occur, but he didn’t even pay for subdivision until 7 months after we signed contracts. I suspect he is stalling now as the property prices have gone upon our area, how easy is it for him to revoke the contract if sub division is not granted in 18 months???

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Jasmine November 14, 2015 at 2:14 pm

Hi, I purchased a property on auction and settlement date was 15th Oct. Now is 14th November (being 4 weeks late). We paid 10% deposit. I am not sure what to do?

I am think to withdraw from the contract as seller delayed 4 weeks already.
or
i will claim the compensation from the delay.

i like the property and took so much hassle to get the bank loan in 2 month time. So far the seller did not inform the settlement.
Any suggestions welcome!

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Bel January 8, 2016 at 7:52 pm

My buyer has used up the 3 days grace period of the actually settlement date and further delay due to transfer papers not signed properly and our settlement agent advised that we are entitled to claim delay penalty interest. We have bought another property with the clause “subject to satisfactory sale and settlement of our property”. My seller now wants to claim delay penalty interest from us. Do we have to pay this? What are our rights?

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Lance January 19, 2016 at 12:19 am

Hi I signed an unconditional contract to buy an apartment of the plan in September 2015. I paid 10 % deposit and settlement date will be in the first week of March 2016. Unfortunately I lost my job last week and now I can’t apply for a bank loan. Can I have a right to extend the settlement date because of my situation. If so maximum how long I can extend the settlement date. In case if I can’t arrange the finance even after extending the settlement date how much interest vendor can charge for default. Please advice.

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Chat January 22, 2016 at 1:54 am

Hi

We have recently bought a house and due to the bank getting my name wrong, we had to delay the settlement by 7 days (including weekend). The seller advised us we will be charged penalty rates. We were supposed to settle today. However, the seller’s settlement agent forgot to lodge one of the documents and therefore had to postpone the settlement until tomorrow. The seller’s settlement agent has informed us that they will still be charging us penalty rates for the 7 days. What are my rights here? Am i able to charge the seller any penalty rates? Do I have an opportunity to dispute their penalty charges towards us, considering they were not ready to begin with?

Thanks

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hari January 29, 2016 at 12:03 pm

Hi, I am in a situation that was told verbally settlement of my new townhouse will be taken place at the end of january. but i havent received any information or update from property agent or my solicitor whos also waiting for the vendor solicitor.
but the next thing i found is that the other 2 units of the townhouse has been place on realestate.com.au / domain.com.au for lease. and one of them are actually deposit taken.
my question here is. isnt that settlement will take place together for the whole lot of the unit. or can be varied?
please any advised would be really appreciated.
Thanks

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Pradip February 26, 2016 at 10:27 am

Hi Chris,

I am submitting a 5% deposit on land purchase which will title December of 2016, and when I have to settle the account. I am little anxious what if my financial changes? What will happen if I have to extend the settlement date due to job loss, wife pregnancy or any other reason. Will there be any penalty for the same, if no what is the maximum extention you can get without penalty or additional charges or if yes then how much you are looking at paying.

With Best Regards
Pradip

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Sonia March 10, 2016 at 10:06 am

Hi Chris,

I signed a contract, “REIWA – Contract for sale of land or strata title by offer and acceptance” in WA on the 9th November 2015 to buy a rear block that was in the process of being subdivided. Today is the 10th and the settlement has not occurred and I have not been notified by the agent of the delay.

On the Contract it states, ‘ Settlement Date – 14 days from issue of the title but no later than 4 months from acceptance’. It is now more than 4 months. My question is can I cancel the contract? Are there any penalties?

Can you please advise?

Thank you.
Regards

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james April 5, 2016 at 11:54 am

WE purchased a unit off the sub-division plan on the 7th July 2015 and settlement date was to be on the 22nd January 2016. We only found out when our conveyancer rang the day before settlement to tell us it would not take place. We were without accommodation and we are forced to pay for months for accommodation until whatever settlement date is advised to our conveyancer. Until now we still do not know when we have a settlement date, because developer does not return our calls!
Can we cancel the contract and get our deposit back ?
If not can we sue them for damages for the health effects and costs for accommodation?
Can you please advise?
Thank you
Jamee

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Marie April 30, 2016 at 3:43 pm

Hi,
I sold my property in February 2016 and the settlement was 13th of April. Something went wrong with buyers mortgage and still it’s not settle! What are my rights as a vendor? How much penalty that I should get and from wich date to which? Please answer. Today’s the 30th of April.

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Winnie May 2, 2016 at 11:07 am

Hi,

We have sold our property in NSW recently. Our property is due for settlement in 3 weeks . The contract says the property is vacant. We were happily waiting for settlement. Last week, the buyer would like to lease the apartment out prior to settlement, we have said no already, but still the agent and the buyer had leased out the property without our consent. We were extremely unhappy about this. Is the contract we signed void? We have not sign anything, tenancy agreement or early possession. Is this common? What are our liabilities? Is the contract void now because it is not vacant?

Thanks.

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Karen May 20, 2016 at 3:42 am

Can you help me to understand my rights and is this even legal? We won a auctioned house 1/31/16 on Auction.com they have now extended it 3 times, saying the seller (which of course is a Bank due to being a foreclosure) has put a hold on a batch of files and ours is in that batch, with no foreseen review date in view. Is this legal with having a signed fully executed contract. and what rights do we have?

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Chris Lang May 21, 2016 at 9:38 pm

Hi Karen, it seems you’re in the US and this website is an Aussie real estate blog, I’m not sure how things work in your country. Sorry – I wish I could help.
Cheers,
Chris

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Nnew June 16, 2016 at 3:08 am

Hi there we bought investment house with condition as it is, settlement should happen but I refused as the house and back yard and stor full of rubbish and personal item and the seller solicetter send a letter we have to settle other wise penalty start from today what should I do buyer said it is full of rubbish,

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Jamila July 7, 2016 at 8:35 pm

Hi there,
My widowed aunt (childless) died intestate last August in South Australia, and I went through the courts to get letters of administration in order to sell the property, which sold at auction on June 18 with a 30 day settlement. Now my conveyancers are unable to locate the title and original loan account (the mortgage was never discharges, although nothing was left owing). It was all paid out so long ago, and my aunt had none of the paperwork in the house; no one can remember anything about when the loan was paid out, and Bank of SA can’t find any records! What happens now? If settlement is delayed for more than a fortnight, I won’t be in the country! Feeling stressed!

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Steph July 21, 2016 at 4:52 pm

We were i formed 2 weeks before settlement that the vendor is refusing to sign the mortage transfer (because they want to sue the agent as they believe they didnt get a good price). The agent said everything will be ok they will get the signature. It is now 3 days before settlement and the vendor is still refusing. What can we do?

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conveyancers sydney August 10, 2016 at 3:02 pm

This info is worth everyone’s attention. How
can I find out more?

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Tania September 8, 2016 at 4:55 pm

Hi There, we have signed a sales and purchase agreement which has now gone unconditional and the deposit has been paid. The vendor has emailed to say he no longer wants the sale to go through that he felt pressured by the real estate agent and wants us to withdraw from the contract. Mean while our own property has gone unconditional and take over date is 7/10/16, which is inline with our contract. What do we do, it leaves us with no house and no means to get back in to the property market as the majority of our deposit will go on agent fees as we will not be within a 20% deposit. What are our rights.
Regards Tania

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Chris Lang September 30, 2016 at 10:12 pm

Hi Tania,

Sorry to hear about this. In general both you and the vendor are bound by the contract and they can’t make you withdraw from the contract because they changed their mind about selling. You don’t have to take the hit for this – contact a lawyer who can go through your contract and give you a good explanation of your rights.

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Milton October 22, 2016 at 8:21 pm

Hi there I need advice ….my settlement was oct 21 …I received 3/4 of the money through my solicitor the agent who sold my house released the deposit on settlement day to the solicitor but I didnt receive it ….. its making me furious knowing new people r in my house and I didnt receive all of my money …. now I have to wait till monday to c whats going on …im angry …not happy made my life alittle bit difficult cause I bought another house …now .can I take any action on these solicitor or bite the bullet ….mind u its not the first time iv dold houses but new solicitor on this property

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Andrea October 25, 2016 at 10:28 am

My mother requested an extension of the settlement date to the buyer as my Father is terminally ill in hospital. We asked for an extra three weeks extension and it was uncharitably declined by the buyer. I would like to know what will the consequences and penalty incurred if we overstay the settlement date. You mentioned in the article that there’s a 14 day grace period from the vendor’s perspective. Any advice is welcome.

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Rae L-J November 7, 2016 at 3:20 pm

Hi, all the help out there seems geared toward the purchaser, like the vendor is never at the pointy end of misinformation or being taken advantage of.
We are the vendor. We had a contract signed on 17 October for a short settlement period to 1 December.
The original date for the contract going unconditional was 25 Oct. Then the buyer requested and extension to 31 Oct (difficulties with her buyer’s finance on a property she is selling – this sale going unconditonal is a condition on our sale going unconditional – the unfortunate domino effect).
On 28 Oct we were again asked if the buyer could have until 2 November for unconditional issues to be met. We agreed again. On 31 Oct they asked to have until 4 Nov, as the public holiday slowed down the bank valuer for their sale property. We agreed again. On 4 Nov we were asked to delay again until tomorrow, 8 Nov, because the bank needed a few days for paperwork after the valuation on our buyer’s purchaser’s end!!! Exasperating, but we agreed again. We are new to real esate, so yes we are trusting our agent and conveyancer. We could have sold our property 3 times over in the last 3 weeks we believed we were locked into this contract. At NO time has our agent or conveyancing people told us that if we had just said “no” to the first extension, and our buyer could not meet their conditions as per original contract, that would simple have ended the contract. WEEKS AGO!!! Today, I spoke to the head of our conveyancing team, fearing what dreadful legal horros would happen to us if, tomorrow, instead of going unconditional, our buyer asked for another extension (she has still not even paid her full deposit by the way), what would happen if we just said “no” this time. I was told that would simply end the contract. We feel like total idiots (no-one has told us this could have been over weeks ago!). Why is all the assistance given and information freely offered to the buyer, but the novice seller only gets a straight answer if asking a very pointed question? Our conveyancers had even led us to believe that if we didn’t agree to extensions that only the purchaser could then end the contract, which would be another drawn out process, and our agent let us believe pretty much the same thing. We feel like we’ve been led down the garden path by everyone, the agent because they want to keep the sale going (less cost & effort to them) and even our conveyancer, who could have given us this important piece of info weeks ago. We rely on these people to offer this kind of info because we are not solicitors! Just feeling totally disgusted and wanting to put this out there.

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Swetha November 28, 2016 at 10:55 pm

Hi,
We have signed the contract and paid deposit money. We have booked our settlement for 17th Nov 2016. Because of a caveate dropped on the property, vendors conevyancers has asked for a postponment of settlement but because of email issues we couldn’t find this till1 day before settlement so had to pay resettlement fees. Secondly second settlement got booked for 21 Nov 2016, but there is one more caveate lodged on that property so couldnt proceed with the settlement at the place. Thirdly vendor conveyancers has booked for a settlement for 28th November 2016, however just before vendor conveyancer has cancelled the setttlement just before half an hour of settlement saying a possible fourth caveate to be raised and will organize resettlement once it is sorted. But no clear direction given on why it got postponed again. When real estate agent spoke to vendor even they arent aware of fourth caveate. Vendor has promised that they will 100% ensure to get the settlement done on 1st December 2017. Can someone suggest how should we proceed in this situation?

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Louise Manning December 29, 2016 at 2:49 pm

Hello ,We have signed paperwork, money approved from bank.
But loads of reports coming back from inspections, ants coming out of power points, suggestion of CAT3 structural damage to building, pluming problems, Real estate lady is saying its not that bad and you still have to buy, I stopped money going through on Settlement day due to so many problems, pool didn’t pass inspection regarding safety.
feels like we are getting bullied.
Also how long do they have past settlement day to wave there magic wand and fix everything, we dont want it now so many issues! settlement day was 23rd Dec
Thanks for your help in advance

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Chris Lang December 29, 2016 at 8:36 pm

Hi Louise, if your inspection report came back suggesting there’s structural damage, depending on the wording of your contract of sale you may be able to end the contract – but the best thing would be getting a solicitor to check these things for you.

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Tanny January 10, 2017 at 4:12 pm

Yes. Our sale went through ok but as delayed by 4 days, not our fault. Really Not sure why, our conveyancer told us it probably would not happen on the predicted day. Our sale was a private sale with the tenants that rented our house for 3 years… her father.
WE notified the rental agent of the sale and the participated date, nothing was set in stone so to speak. Because she never heard anything different on the day of predicted settlement and neither did we for that matter, she went ahead with the final inspections, water reading and final rent payment date being the day before.
All was well until we got our rental statement and found we were short of 4 days rent.
Letting the tenants know in a polite email about the situation and requiring $240 for the missing 4 days rent, the daughter now wants us to compensate for $300 rent her parents had to pay for the extra days of delayed settlement, plus water and rates for those days as well blaming us for the delay in settlement when we had no control over the settlement date or time.
Where do we stand here. My blood is starting to boil.

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