The process of buying property can be quite stressful. That's partly due to the legal processes required to transfer the ownership of the property from the seller to yourself. Unless you are familiar with legal matters, it is always best to involve a conveyancer. The conveyancing process itself is procedural and one major step in the process is known as the cooling off period. It is a period within which you have the legal protection to withdraw from the contract of sale under certain circumstances. Here's more on this.

The Location of The Property Will Determine Whether the Cooling Off Period Will Apply

Unfortunately, the cooling off period does not always apply in every circumstance. The location of the property will determine whether or not the cooling off period is applicable to your contract of sale. That's because some states or territories do not recognise the cooling off-periods. Your conveyancer will be able to fill you in on this.

The Type of Sale And/or Property Is Also Important

The type of sale, as well as property, can also determine whether the cooling off period will be a part of the purchase process. First, if the property is being purchased at auction, cooling off periods will usually not apply. What's more, cooling off periods in most states often apply on residential property only so if you are buying commercial property or rural land, there won't be a cooling off period.

You Can Waive Your Right to The Cooling Off Period

Even if the cooling off period applies in your case, you can still give up that right. You may need a signed certificate from your conveyancer that waives the right. Remember that doing this usually means that you are bound by the contract as well as its terms and pulling out can be costly.

Withdrawal from The Contract

If you choose to terminate the contract within the cooling off period, you will often be required to provide a notice in writing to the seller and/or his/her agent before the expiry of the cooling off period. You can deliver the notice in person or by registered fax or mail. Remember, however, that you will be required to pay a percentage of the deposit to the seller. This is usually done to compensate the seller for losses incurred on things such as legal fees. The exact percentage may vary depending on where you are.

Withdrawing from the contract of sale after the cooling off period will come at a high cost because you will now be bound to it and have to comply with the terms. How much it will cost you depends on what you agreed upon in the contract.

The Duration of The Cooling Off Period

The duration of the cooling off period will vary from one state to another. Your conveyancer will tell you the exact duration but it's usually a few days.