When you buy an off-the-plan property, there are two approaches you can take to conveyancing – you can do it yourself or you can outsource the job to an expert.

Both approaches involve differing amounts of time, money and stress.

Outsourcing the job to an expert costs money. But it drastically reduces the amount of time you need to spend on the process and the amount of stress you endure.

Doing the job yourself saves you money – at least upfront. But if you make a mistake, it could prove very costly. Even if you don’t, DIY conveyancing will suck up hours of your time and cause you lots of stress.

The pros of DIY conveyancing

Conveyancing is the legal process of transferring a property from one party to another. While there’s no law that says you need a professional conveyancer to manage your side of the transfer, most off-the-plan purchasers feel more comfortable relying on expert help.

If you do want to do it yourself, you can find DIY conveyancing kits online. Buying one of these kits, and doing the work yourself, will cost you less than using a conveyancer.

You’ll also feel in control. When we give important tasks to other people, it’s natural to wonder if they have our best interests at heart. But if you do your own conveyancing, you’ll never have that concern.

The cons of DIY conveyancing

Doing your own conveyancing sounds great in theory. But it’s risky in practice, because it’s easy to make mistakes and there are large sums of money at stake.

‘What sort of mistakes?’ you might be wondering.

When we read contracts of sale that have been drawn up by property developers, you won’t be surprised to hear that we sometimes spot red flags. These might relate to settlement conditions, the sale price and what, exactly, is included in the transaction. An experienced professional will be able spot these red flags. But they’re hard for amateurs to find, because they tend to be hidden in legal jargon and fine print.

By the way, you don’t have to take our word about the dangers of DIY conveyancing. Here’s what Consumer Affairs Victoria says about it:

“There is a lot at stake, so if you are not confident in your ability, use a conveyancer or legal practitioner,” according to Consumer Affairs Victoria.

“If you do your own conveyancing, you will not have a legal practitioner’s or conveyancer’s professional indemnity insurance if something goes wrong.”

That’s right – when you do your own conveyancing for an off-the-plan property purchase, you become liable for any legal or technical mistakes you might make.

A conveyancer will also conduct legal searches, related to the property and the transaction, on your behalf. You could do these searches yourself, but, again, it can be very hard work for an amateur.

Even if you don’t make a mistake doing your own conveyancing, it will be a very stressful, time-consuming experience. Depending on the value you put on your time, doing your own conveyancing could turn out to be more expensive than outsourcing the job to an experienced professional.

Transacting property is stressful enough without having to do the conveyancing yourself. So give the job to a trusted professional. Contact Sutton Laurence King Lawyers 03 9070 9810 or info@slklawyers.com.au for help.