Selling a House in Queensland FAQ

Commencing 1 July 2017, the ATO is set to introduce new tax rules, primarily aimed at foreign sellers though impacting all sellers of property over $750,000 .
This new rule requires purchasers of property of $750,000 and over to retain 12.5% of the proceeds from the sale to be paid to the ATO in the absence of a Clearance Certificate.
If you are :
1. an Australian resident
2. selling property for $750,000 or more
you need to apply for a Clearance Certificate prior to settlement to avoid the buyer withholding 12.5% of the sale proceeds and paying it to the taxman.
What type of property is affected?
These new rules apply to all property, inclusive but not limited to
• Vacant Land
• Residential Property
• Commercial Property
• Strata Title
• Community Tiles Schemes

Conveyancing is the legal process that transfers the title of a property between the seller and the buyer. It starts when the contract is signed (or in some cases prior to signing the contract) and continues through until settlement when the title of the property is transferred in exchange for the purchase price. After settlement there are a number of important steps that must take place to notify relevant authorities of the conveyance.

Most cases the purchaser pays the stamp duty, for full details see the QLD Government website

Settlement is the act of transferring the title of the property in exchange for the purchase price. In practice, this means that the seller gives the buyer a signed transfer for the title of the property and the buyer gives the seller the purchase price (less deposit) in the form of bank cheques. Settlement takes place on settlement day and is attended by the parties’ respective lawyers and the outgoing and incoming mortgagees (if any). It is not usual for the actual buyer and seller to attend settlement

Following settlement, the buyer’s lawyer or the buyer’s incoming mortgagee will lodge the transfer forms with the Land Titles Office in order to register the change of title. This can take several weeks. This will also trigger automatic notifications to the local government. Utility providers need to be contacted by the buyer separately (this is not performed by the buyer’s lawyer). If the property is part of a body corporate, then the buyer’s lawyer will advise the body corporate of the change of ownership so that the body corporate’s records can be updated.