Minimising Gazumping Risks

What is Gazumping?

Imagine making an offer to an agent or vendor, having it accepted verbally, but discovering later that the seller sold the property to someone else, usually at a higher price point. This is known as “Gazumping”.

When your eyes are fixed on a property, you last want someone else to buy it. Technically, this is legal as long as a contract still needs to be established.   Only when a contract is established is a property considered sold.

Gazumping can be significantly troublesome and heartbreaking if you have invested time, money, and emotional energy into securing that property.

Is Gazumping legal in NSW?

Many consider Gazumping unethical because it disregards the initial agreement and undermines the integrity of the transaction. It can also contribute to instability in the real estate market. Buyers may hesitate to invest in properties out of fear. This inefficiency and reduced liquidity can hurt the overall market dynamics.

While sellers can argue that they have the right to accept the highest offer, many buyers believe there should be more accountability and transparency to prevent gazumping.

Now, how do you minimise gazumping risks?

First, the obvious: make your offer irresistible.

Presenting a compelling offer can make the seller more inclined to accept it without entertaining competing offers. Consider adding extra incentives. This could be a shorter settlement period or covering specific fees to sweeten the deal.  By showing your commitment, you are establishing a solid negotiation foundation.

Build a good relationship with the seller and their agent.

Establish a rapport with the seller and maintain open communication with their agent.  By fostering trust, you make it less likely for the seller to entertain competing offers. Take the time to understand the seller’s motivations, preferences, and concerns. This way, you can tailor your offer to align with their needs.

A collaborative relationship with the agent works in your favour. They can keep you updated about the transaction status, and you can strategically position yourself to outshine other potential buyers.

Act as swiftly as possible.

Time is of the essence. The market changes, and so might the seller’s mind. Act fast on the purchasing process. This signals to the seller that you are serious and ready to proceed with the transaction. This will instil confidence in the seller, potentially deterring them from entertaining other offers.

Contact Waratah eConveyancing to secure your dream property.

By implementing proactive strategies and seeking professional assistance, you can minimise the risk of gazumping and increase your chances of successfully securing your dream property.

Bev Gunn of Waratah eConveyancing offers professional and legal advice to help you navigate the legal aspects of the transaction. She can guide you in protecting your interests and ensuring a smooth and faster closing. To make an appointment, call Bev at (02) 4209 2016.


How Do Interest Rates Affect Conveyancing

Understanding How Interest Rates Affect Conveyancing

Whether you’re selling or buying a home, it’s essential to understand how interest rates can affect the conveyancing process. The legal process of transferring ownership from one person to another, is conveyancing. As interest rates fluctuate occasionally, buyers, sellers, and investors need to be aware of their potential impact.

When to engage a conveyancer when buying a house?

Whether selling or buying a house, the earlier you work with a conveyancer, the better. This is essential so they can guide you with the legal processes to ensure your interest is protected right from the start.

How will changes in interest rates affect my mortgage payments?

Interest rates play a crucial role in the conveyancing process, especially when buying a property with a mortgage. Generally, when interest rates are up, the cost of borrowing goes up. This means higher monthly mortgage payments. Conversely, when interest rates go down, mortgage repayments become more affordable.

Will rising interest rates make it more challenging to secure a mortgage?

When this happens, lenders tend to be more cautious. This could make getting a mortgage a bit trickier. You may also need to meet higher income requirements, which could affect your borrowing capacity. If you are in this situation, talking to a professional mortgage broker is a good idea. They can help you explore different options and negotiate with lenders on your behalf. Their guidance can make the process much smoother and increase your chances of finding the right mortgage despite market instability.

Given current interest rates, how do I know which mortgage product to choose?

The options can be overwhelming. You will often come across two types of interest rates: variable rate and fixed rate mortgages.

Variable rate mortgages give you some flexibility since the interest rates can go up and down. With a fixed rate, you lock in a specific interest rate for a set period, which can provide stability. The downside is you might miss potential savings if rates stay the same or decrease.

To make the best choice, closely examine your financial situation, how much risk you’re comfortable with, and your future plans.

What is a fixed interest rate?

When you opt for a fixed interest rate mortgage, your interest rate stays the same for a set time, usually one to five years. This means that even with market fluctuations, your repayments remain consistent during that period.

With a fixed rate mortgage, your interest rates are predictable, making budgeting much more accessible. But there’s a catch – if you decide to switch or pay off the loan early, some break fees might be involved. Be sure to consider the potential costs if you make any changes before the fixed period is up.

I decided to go with variable rates. What happens if interest rates rise during my mortgage term?

As mentioned earlier, having a variable rate mortgage means your interest rate and mortgage repayments could go up if the overall interest rates rise. On the positive side, when interest rates are falling, your variable rate mortgage can offer you the advantage of reduced repayments.

To make the most of a variable rate mortgage, it’s essential to be prepared for potential changes. Staying informed about market trends and economic conditions can help you anticipate and plan for any adjustments. An emergency fund can provide added financial security during such times.

Are there any other costs or fees associated with changing mortgage products due to interest rate changes?

If you’re looking to switch from one mortgage product to another, like moving from a variable rate mortgage to a fixed rate mortgage or vice versa, keep in mind that lenders often charge various fees during this transition. Lenders might charge application fees, valuation fees, and exit fees.

The application fee covers the administrative costs involved in processing your new application.

You may encounter exit fees if you switch from a fixed rate mortgage before the agreed upon term ends. Breaking a fixed rate mortgage early means you must fulfill the original agreement. Lenders may charge these exit fees to compensate for the lost interest income they were expecting from your loan.

Valuation fees are another consideration during a mortgage switch. The lender may require a new property valuation to determine its current market value. This valuation helps them assess the property’s worth relative to the new mortgage and influences the terms they can offer you.

How do I calculate the total cost of my mortgage, including interest rates?

Calculating the total cost of your mortgage requires factoring in the loan amount, interest rate, loan term, and repayment frequency. By considering these variables, online mortgage calculators can help you estimate the total cost.

These calculators often provide general ideas. If you want something more specific and custom tailored according to your goals, it’s best to consult with a professional mortgage broker.

Can government programs or incentives help homebuyers manage interest rate changes?

The Australian government occasionally introduces programs or incentives to assist homebuyers during periods of economic fluctuations. These may include first home buyer grants, stamp duty concessions, or interest rate subsidies. Stay informed about any updates on government initiatives that may help you manage interest rate changes more effectively.

Are You Looking to Simplify Your Property Journey?

Working with a conveyancer is essential to navigating the legal intricacies when buying or selling a property. At Waratah eConveyancing, we specialise in making this process seamless and worry free for you.

We are dedicated to untangling the complexities of property law, ensuring a smooth and stress free experience. Led by Bev Gunn, a licensed expert under NSW Fair Trading (License Number 05009889) and a trusted member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers (NSW), you can rest assured that you’re in capable hands.

Skip Googling “conveyancing services near me”. We’re here to simplify the jargon and handle the details so you know exactly what goes on with your property investments. We’re here to make your property journey a breeze. To make an appointment, call Bev at (02) 4209 2016.


First Home Buyer

First Home Buyers Assistance Scheme

“Unlocking the Door to Your Dream Home: A Comprehensive Guide for First-Time Buyers on Grants, Saving Strategies, Budgeting, and the Essential Role of a Conveyancer”

Are you planning to buy your first home but feeling overwhelmed by the process? Don’t worry; we’ve got your back! As a first-time homebuyer, you may have many questions and concerns, such as where to start, how to find the right property, and what grants and schemes you qualify for. Fortunately, Waratah eConveyancing Shellharbour can help you secure your dream home.

Overview of first home buyer’s assistance scheme?

The First Home Buyer Assistance (FHBA) is an NSW Government initiative in Australia. The scheme offers various incentives to help home buyers purchase their first house or apartment. The primary purpose of the scheme is to provide financial assistance and support to eligible first home buyers who would otherwise be unable to afford the costs associated with buying a property. Starting 1st July 2023, eligible first home buyers will enjoy an increased transfer duty (previously known as Stamp Duty) exemption threshold from $650,000 to $800,000 for new and existing home purchases. The concessional rate will also increase from $800,000 to $1 million.

Due to these changes, the First Home Buyer Choice (FHBC) will be closed for new purchases after 30 June 2023. If you exchange contracts by this date, you will still have until settlement to opt in to FHBC. After that, there will be no option between property tax and transfer duty for new purchases. But don’t worry if you’ve already opted in; you will continue to pay property tax as long as you own that property and will remain exempt from transfer duty on that purchase.

Are there any residence requirements?

There are changes to the residence requirement for several schemes, grants, and exemptions. For contracts entered into on or after 1 July 2023, purchasers must move into their homes within 12 months of settlement and live in the property for a continuous 12 months to satisfy the residence requirement.

How to qualify for the first home buyers scheme, and eligibility requirements?

  • You must not have bought or co-owned your first home in Australia to qualify for the scheme.
  • The first home’s value must be at most $800,000 to be exempt from transfer duty.
  • For concessional transfer duty, the value of the first home is between $800,000 and $1 million.
  • Owners must occupy the property within 12 months of settling and residing there for at least 12 consecutive months.
  • You must also be an Australian citizen or a permanent resident at least 18 years old.

The importance of budgeting when purchasing a first home

Buying a home is a significant financial decision that requires careful budget planning to avoid overspending or putting yourself in debt. When searching for homes within your budget, consider additional costs, such as property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, utilities, maintenance fees and moving costs, before making an offer. Plan by saving at least 1-3% of the house’s purchase price to cover unexpected expenses like repairs or renovations.

Here are some tips to help you save money when buying your first home:

  1. Start Saving Early – Save as early as possible to have enough money for a down payment.
  2. Check Your Credit Score – Before applying for a mortgage, check your credit score and make sure it’s in good shape.
  3. Research – Take the time to research different types of mortgages to find one that fits your budget and needs.
  4. Negotiate with the seller – this might feel intimidating, do your research, know your limits, make a fair and reasonable offer, and lean on your conveyancer.
  5. Shop Around For Insurance – Shopping around for homeowners insurance can help you save money on monthly premiums, so take the time to compare quotes from different companies before deciding.

How Can a Shellharbour Conveyancer Help a first home buyer?

Buying a home is a significant milestone in life, and it can be an intimidating process. A conveyancer can help first home buyers navigate the legal aspects of the purchase, from signing contracts to attending settlement.

Conveyancers are experts in property law and understand the complexities of buying a property. They will review all documents related to the purchase, such as contracts and title deeds, to ensure that everything is in order. They will also liaise between brokers, agents and banks on behalf of the buyer.

Conveyancers can advise about grants and other assistance available for first home buyers and any restrictions or conditions that may apply to the purchase. They can also help with lodging caveats on the property and applying for relevant certificates.

Using a conveyancer when buying your first home provides peace of mind that everything is handled correctly. It ensures you have someone who understands the process by your side at every step.

Congratulations on taking the first step in becoming a first homeowner, Education!

At Waratah eConveyancing Kiama, we help make your home buying journey easy and stress-free. Bev, our friendly expert, can assist you with conveyancing education and uncovering hidden grants and schemes that benefit you. We wish you the best of luck in your journey towards becoming a homeowner.

If you have a family member wanting to assist you, why not give Bev a call to discuss how you can still obtain the stamp duty exemption.




During these uncertain times it is important that we all stay safe.

At Waratah eConveyancing we use the latest platforms which enable us to complete all related legislative requirements in a remote manner.  Therefore, we are still operating under these new conditions.

If you are interested in refinancing or getting your property ready for sale, please contact us as we can work through these together remotely.

Keep safe,

Bev Gunn

First Home Loan Deposit Scheme


First Home Loan Deposit Scheme

The Government’s deposit scheme assists first home buyers to purchase a home with as little as 5% deposit avoiding paying lender mortgage insurance. An individual is eligible if earning less than $125,000 and for couples less than $200,000.

For NSW capital cities and regional centres, homes are capped at $700,000. For the rest of the state it is capped at $450,000.

The government is acting as guarantor on the loan so that the borrowers don’t have to pay lenders mortgage insurance. If you refinance your home, you will no longer be eligible for support by the government.

The government has also capped the number of homebuyers it will support at 10,000 per year. Already 3,000 homebuyers have benefited from the scheme.

Please contact us and we will help you purchase your first home!