Frequently asked questions

What is the current legislation on buying property?

Up to date information can be sourced from the Real Estate Agents Authority, a crown entity established by the Real Estate Agents Act 2008. It can also be found in a booklet entitled “New Zealand Residential Property Sales and Purchase Agreements Guide. The Real Estate Agents authority can be located at or by calling 0800forREAA (08003677322).

What are the ways to sell and buy a home in New Zealand?

  • Auction
  • Tender
  • Advertising/Fixed Price or
  • By Negotiation

Each method requires a written sale and purchase agreement, have your lawyer check the agreement before you sign it and the buyer and seller can make changes to the price and conditions as part of the negotiation process.

What can I expect from an agent?

The agent works for and is paid by the seller. They also have clear responsibilities to buyers. All agents are bound by the Code of Professional Conduct and Client care issued by the REAA- they must deal fairly and honestly with all parties.

What if I need to sell my property so I can purchase my new home?   

Your Harcourt’s Sale Consultant can help you sell your existing property; they would ensure the appropriate clause is inserted in the Sale and Purchase Agreement to allow time to sell. There is a standard practice for an help with writing essays escape clause to be inserted so the vendor is able to provide 3 working days in which to confirm your purchase whether you have sold or not if another buyer is wishing to make an offer on their property.

How do I approach the property that is for sale?

Your Harcourt’s Sales Consultant can arrange a private viewing of the property, or you may wish to attend an advertised “open home” which are normally held on weekends. The Sales Consultant will be able to keep in touch with you and provide information on other properties you may wish to view.

What if I have to arrange finance can I make an offer?

For a Priced Property yes the offer can be conditional subject to you obtaining finance.

For a Tender although a cash tender is more attractive to the vendor you can submit a tender that is conditional.

For an Auction you must be in a position on a cash unconditional basis at the Auction, you can organise through your bank or mortgage broker pre approval.

Can I make a cash offer?

For a Priced Property, yes this will be called an unconditional offer once accepted; you pay a deposit upon signing the contract.

If our offer is unconditional when can we move?  

The possession date agreed to by both parties and stipulated in the contract will be when you can arrange to move. Dates can be varied later provided both parties to the contract agree.

Can I buy before Tender or Auction day?

For Tender – no only tenders received at the date and time stipulated on the documentation.

For Auction– Yes by way of an Auction Sale and Purchase agreement. If the vendor finds the offer acceptable all other registered buyers are given the opportunity to submit their offers should they choose. The amount you offer will not be disclosed to any other parties. An Auction can also be brought forward.   

Can I bid at an Auction if I have a property to sell?

The options are to either arrange a bridging loan to cover any delay in settling the property or ask the vendor for a longer settlement date. This must be arranged before the Auction.

What if a property does not sell at Auction?

When a reserve price is not reached the property passes to the highest bidder. They are offered the first right to purchase the property immediately after the Auction at the reserve price. If a sale is not completed the property will be offered for sale to all other interested parties.

Can I get a Valuer, Specialist or Builder to check the property prior to making an offer?

Yes you many employ a specialist to provide a report on the property either prior to submitting an offer or you can include a condition in the contract.

What is a Reserve Price?  

The seller sets the reserve price prior to Auction, it is determined from feedback during the marketing campaign. The Auctioneer is given the reserve (minimum figure) to sell the property for.

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