“Live-worthy” certificate: A simpler solution?
Bought a property in recent times? Here in the Smart State we must have one of the most complex, confusing and convoluted contract processes in the western world. Warning statements, disclosures by the dozen, many of them in BIG BOLD LETTERS. We’ve written here before about the failure of these so-called consumer protections.
Last Friday night we met with a couple who wanted to buy their first home. It’s 7pm at the home’s kitchen bench, another offer’s been received, the auction’s the next day, so no time to waste. And out we come with the 5 documents over 22 pages. Nervous do you think? Do they understand fully the details and implications? Is it a fair environment to put anyone in?
Surely consumer protection is firstly about informing people? How can they be fairly informed by 22 pages of reading on a Friday night? And this isn’t including the 2 page Sustainability Declaration the seller’s provided or the building and pest inspections they still need done. Or the title/council/body corp/main roads/EPA/flooding etc searches their solicitor will ask them to check.
One option being canvassed is the idea of a disclosure document, prepared and paid for by a seller before they put their property on the market. Kind of like a “roadworthy” you need before you can sell your car. It could include all the usual info and even a building and pest report, and be available to each and every buyer when they first enquire. If you don’t understand something, you can ask your lawyer/valuer/townplanner/banker/Uncle Jack before you decide to buy…
Then we can have simple contracts that everyone can follow.
What do you think of this idea? Got another solution to the masses of contract paperwork?We’d love to hear your comments.