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What happens if the buyer cannot settle on time?

Like any contracts, once signed, both parties have an obligation to settle the contract by the appointed date. If the buyer is not able to do so, then generally you as the seller can enforce your rights against the buyer. This means that you would be able to claim penalty interest and damages caused by the buyer due to the delay or even terminate the contract. You can only claim reasonably foreseeable loss when claiming any damages and have an obligation to mitigate loss when making a claim.

In any case, noting that settlement date is practically important to the parties because they are likely to have shaped the few weeks of their lives around the settlement date, it is important to also consider the practical impacts of a delayed settlement and do what is required to put it back on track. This may involve some investigation on the delay to understand the root cause. If you are uncertain on what to do during this type of scenario, you should consider engaging a conveyancing lawyer to help you through the situation. Better yet, make sure you engage a conveyancing lawyer from the start of the process who can help to reduce the chances of a delay to settlement by pre-empting problems before they become one.

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Gavin Douglass
07 Jun 2024
Mark Fletcher at Leadconveyancing handled my recent sale in Brisbane. I would recommend him for his patience and customer service. As a seller, I felt he represented my interests completely.
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03 Jun 2024
Had a wonderful experience with Lead Conveyancing, especially as a first home buyer. They were prompt, helpful and very reassuring through the whole process. Highly recommend.
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Tristan Nguyen
01 Jun 2024
I had a wonderful experience with John Reid, Kristy Fletcher and Alice Blair. Special thanks to Alice who really advocated for us and support us during an otherwise stressful time. We will definitely use their service again in future.
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