Christmas Rush

5 December 2014

“All I want for Christmas……………………….”

When purchasing a home around this time of the year the most common request from clients is to be in their new home for Christmas.  However this is the traditionally the busiest time of the year for banks so in order to ensure that your settlement occurs with the least amount of stress here are a few tips.  

Know when your solicitor will be available.

While bank’s are open between Christmas and New Year, Solicitors are not and you cannot settle on a new purchase without a solicitor.  So before making your offer  check what days your solicitor will be taking off and what their recommended time frame and dates would be including the last sensible day for settlement.  If this is too short for you then we would suggest pushing the settlement date out to the New Year.

Don’t settle on the last working day before Christmas.

If something goes wrong and you can’t settle on that day then the next day that settlement can occur would be in the New Year.  Penalties can be charged if you are unable to settle on the specified date.  So if you can’t settle on the last working day this could mean substantial penalties would be charged until settlement can take place which wouldn’t be until the next Solicitors’ working day which would be in the New Year.  That’s a couple of weeks’ worth of penalties.  Penalties are usually charged at 10 – 12% of the full purchase price.  So on a purchase price of $300,000 this is $99 per calendar day.  

DO NOT settle on the first working day in the New Year.  

Solicitors need to have time to peruse loan and mortgage documents.  If you make the settlement date the first working day then you run the risk that the solicitor will be pushed for time and may not be able to rectify any errors if they arise.  

Consider renting the property over Christmas.

If you have gone unconditional the Vendor may consider allowing you to move in on the new property and renting until settlement could take place.  So you could move in before Christmas and get set up but not take ownership until the New Year.  

Get your financed Pre-approved – IF YOU CAN.

This allows you knowledge that you do have loan approval and if there is any extra information required you can get that to the lender before entering in to a time pressured contract.    PLUS a pre-approval means that you’re in the system with the lenders.  It means that when you do find a property it’s just a case of the lender signing off on the property – as opposed to the time consuming full assessment when you do find a property.

Christmas is stressful enough.  Just these few tips can save a massive headache and a little heartache.  It’s all about expectations being met but while it plays to be on the safe side – being well prepared can ensure that you have the best possible chance and the minimum possible stress.



Published In Whakatane Beacon

This post was written by

Trish Marsden - who has written 96 posts

Comment on this post