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Buying a Tasmanian Property

Are you looking at buying a Tasmanian property? This article outlines the issues to consider and steps to take once you have found a property to buy.

Check the Property

Once you have found a property that you would like to buy, the next thing that you should do is check the property for any structures that may have been erected without the required approvals, for any defects or problems with existing structures and for any general features of the surrounds that may cause issues for you after settlement.

Examine the Contract 

The principle of ‘caveat emptor’ or now more commonly known as ‘buyer beware’ applies to buying Tasmanian property. This means that you need to do your homework as in Tasmania there are no cooling off periods or vendor disclosure requirements.

Before signing any contract it is strongly recommended that you consult your solicitor, as purchasing property generally involves a significant investment, therefore it is important to get advice from an experienced property lawyer.


Once the contract has been signed it is important to ensure that you have adequate insurance in place. If you are unsure as to when you should take out insurance for the property that you are purchasing you should ask your solicitor.

Between signing and settling

This is where your solicitor does work behind the scenes with your bank, the Vendor’s solicitor and many other parties involved in the process. It includes carrying out all necessary searches, certificates and forms. Most of these tasks are completed by your solicitor, however, you may need to answer specific queries, or give instructions to your solicitor in certain circumstances.


The final step in purchasing property is called ‘settlement’. Settlement is where the parties to the transaction meet to finalise the transfer of the property from the Vendor to the Purchaser. Put simply, at settlement the Vendor’s solicitor hands over the legal documents to the Purchaser’s solicitor that, once registered at the Titles Office, transfer the legal ownership of the property in exchange for the purchase price. Once the relevant documents and cheques have been exchanged, settlement is deemed to have been effected.

Your Solicitor

Generally, your Solicitor will do a lot of behind the scenes work as mentioned above. A simple summary of the types of things that your solicitor will attend to:

  • general advice in relation to the contract;
  • your specific legal obligations in relation to settlement;
  • advise the costs involved in the whole process - such as legal costs, search costs and stamp duty;
  • carry out the required searches such as title searches and checking with all relevant government departments and local authorities to ensure that what you see is what you get; and
  • calculating liabilities and any adjustments to rates or taxes and preparing settlement statements.

All advice and checks are carried out to ensure that nothing hinders your purchase and settlement occurs in an orderly and timely manner.

Cormiston Legal is happy to help with your sale or purchase of Tasmanian property. You can contact us to obtain a quote by visiting

For more information about Cormiston Legal please visit or call us on 03 6332 9353.

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