Its Moving Day!
Updated: Jun 20, 2019
Moving house is one of those momentous events in life – equal parts exciting, stressful and terrifying. Unless you do it all the time, then you become like a well-oiled machine. But for most people, the former is more accurate.
In the middle of that stress of moving itself is settlement. The issue with settlement is that there are a million reasons why we cannot be 100% confident that it will proceed as planned. If you have experienced buying or selling a property, you have probably been exposed to some of the last-minute panic that goes along with it. A good conveyancer (like the whole team and BKS Conveyancing) will be working very hard for you to not have to endure extra stress, but some things are out of our control.
Banks are notorious for causing delays to settlement. If you are selling, the biggest issues arise if you have more than one property with debt to one bank (this will be a partial release and takes much longer for the bank to prepare). If you are buying, many problems arise simply because documents are not returned to the bank in a timely manner.
As we move towards electronic conveyancing, many of these issues , being small errors in documents used to mean that settlement had to be called off, but that is no longer the case as documents are automatically generated. But settlement is our problem; that’s what you engage us to do, as you have other things to worry about.
Utilities and services are a big one. We provide advice of the sale to government entities which have an interest in the land – the local council, Water Corporation, the Office of State Revenue and the WA Planning Commission are all advised of the change of ownership by us. We can’t help you with services such as gas, electricity, telephone and internet as those services are registered to an occupant, not necessarily the owner. It is important to make sure that you liaise with your preferred suppliers for these services well in advance of settlement, so that you can do the simple things when you move. Like turn on lights and keep things in the freezer frozen.
Melanie* had issues with Synergy in her move. She submitted an online “Moving House” request on the Synergy website, but had left it a little too late. Thankfully she only had to spend one night in candlelight with ice-filled eskys before power was connected.
If you are selling your primary residence, by law you have until noon the day after settlement to WHAT vacate the property. Keep this in mind when you are planning your move, as it may allow the window you need to ensure settlement is complete before you load the truck. Conversely, if you are buying, you may not be able to get possession of the property until noon the day after settlement, if the seller resides at the property.
This can cause some issues. Sarah and Hayden* were caught out when they arrived at their new property shortly after settlement was complete, full moving van in tow. The problem was that the seller had barely started packing, let alone leaving the premises. But Sarah and Hayden had also sold their home and their buyer was currently moving in their stuff.
BKS Conveyancing provides all of our clients with a guide to settlement and we encourage you to read it thoroughly. A lot of additional problems can be solved with a little bit of pre-planning, or a conversation with your conveyancer.
*Not their real names.