Buyers beware – know what you are buying

Buyers must carry out a pre-purchase inspection of a property and not rely on the seller having the property in perfect condition ready for sale.

The latin maxim “caveat emptor” or “buyer beware” still remains an essential buyers obligation today as ever. It is up to the buyer to discover through pre-purchase inspections, the current condition of the property. The most common ones are:

  • Pest Inspections to check for past or present termite activity;
  • Building Inspections for major structural defects;
  • Test that all appliances included in the sale are in good working order like the dishwasher, stove, automated garage door and remote, air conditioning and remotes, electric gates and remotes, intercom system;
  • Pool inspection to know the pool filter and pool equipment are in running order and to see that the protective pool fencing complies with the current legislation.

The buyer can carry out these inspections themselves or pay to have professionals do the inspections and provide a comprehensive report.

When is the best time to do these inspections? It depends on the way the property is marketed. If the property is being sold by auction, then before the auction date. If the buyer has a cooling off period, then before the end of the cooling off period.

The purchaser then will still be able to negotiate with the seller on the price or simply decide not to proceed with the purchase and to look for another property.

Remember it’s buyer beware.