Whether you're a first time buyer, seasoned home-mover or are looking at residential property for investment, there's one thing that should be on your today list - hiring your conveyancing solicitors. Property solicitors are the people who make sure that your house or flat actually changes hands when you buy it, and sorting out the details of the contract. Like many areas of the law, conveyancing solicitors aren't cheap, which may lead you to consider a 'do it yourself' option with a pack off the internet. However, Australia has some of the most complex laws in the world when it comes to property, and as laws change depending on the state you're in which makes trying to complete the process yourself a risky option.
That said, not all conveyancing solicitors are the same, and while all may reach the same level of qualification, there are a few key pointers to look out for before you sign the contract.
Ask for recommendations
Look at any market report, and you'll see that property sales in Australia are starting to pick up. While this means plenty of business opportunities to property solicitors, it also means that many of your friends, family and colleagues are likely to have recommendations for conveyancing solicitors they or someone they know has used. Make sure you ask around and see what the solicitor was like to deal with.
Look for membership of a professional association
While the regulations across states do vary, there are national associations which conveyancing solicitors can join. While membership shows a commitment to the profession and to professional standards, there are other advantages. Property solicitors who join these groups will have access to additional market insight, access to the latest legal advice and superior training. All of this means better standards of service for you, and they're more likely to catch any issues before it is too late.
When you're still in the process of searching for conveyancing solicitors, you can also contact a professional association for a list of members to help you identify companies.
While no one ever plans for things to wrong, unfortunately they sometimes do. Always make sure your conveyancing solicitors have professional indemnity insurance (and this is often compulsory). This makes sure that should their advice not be up to scratch, you won't have to carry the financial burden of their mistakes. A company which doesn't have this insurance should be avoided at all costs.