If you are new to the property market, or not so new, and you are thinking of buying or selling real estate, there are things you need to have ready to complete a property transaction which will simplify and speed up the process.
This is what we call "Getting your ducks in a row".
Even before you have made an offer on a property, it is important to engage with a lawyer who will guide you step by step through to completion of a property purchase or property sale. When you make contact with your lawyer, you will need to provide original current photographic identification.
A current passport is the best form of photo ID to have. It is valid for 10 years and usually no other supporting documents are required when a passport is used as photo ID.
Even if you do not intend to travel, it is a worthwhile document to have as increasing Anti-Money Laundering (AML) compliance requirements will have you needing photo ID for your bank, your accountant, your real estate agent and, soon, when you buy a car from a car dealer.
You will also need to provide a current original proof of address. This can be a government issued letter (i.e. from the Ministry of Justice or IRD) or a utility account with your name on it and your address where you reside.
Both your photo ID and proof of address is an AML requirement and is required when purchasing or selling real estate.
Your proof of address must be residential, PO boxes are not accepted.
From 1 January 2020, all property transactions require an IRD number for each individual purchasing or selling a property or an IRD number for a company or family trust that is selling or purchasing a property.
These are government requirements and you cannot proceed with a property transaction until this requirement is met and provided to your lawyer, making it important to ensure you have these IRD number/s are to hand in order to avoid any delays or penalty interest.
If you are a first home buyer and you wish to use your Kiwisaver funds to assist in your purchase, you will need to obtain from your Kiwisaver provider a letter which outlines the amount you can withdraw from your Kiwisaver.
As a first home buyer, it is recommended that you take advantage of Kainga Ora's offer of a Homestart Grant by completing an application on-line and receiving a letter of approval to receive that grant.
This pre-approval is valid for 6 months so there is no harm in getting it early and finding out how much (up to $10,000 each) you can get.
When entering into an agreement for sale and purchase to purchase real estate, you will need to complete a Residential Land Statement which is a statement you make confirming that you are eligible to buy real estate in New Zealand.
If you are not a New Zealand, Australian or Singaporean citizen or you have not been a permanent resident for at least a year or have not been in New Zealand for at least 183 days of the last year and you are not a New Zealand tax resident, then you will need to make application to the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) for consent to purchase real estate in New Zealand. If this is required then you need to make application to the OIO prior to HJL-318011-241-190-V1 putting in an offer on a property. The process of application can take up to two months to confirm eligibility so it pays to have a consent in hand prior to putting in an offer for real estate.
If you are selling, in some instances your name registered on the Record of Title of the property you are selling may not have your correct legal name as it is on your current photographic identification.
If your photographic identification is not exactly as it appears on the Record of Title, then a Declaration as to Identity will need to be completed before signing a Client Authority and Instruction form which is the document that records the property transferring transaction.
You will know if a Declaration as to Identity is required because your lawyer will compare your name on the Record of Title to the property and your current photo ID. To enable the beginnings of a life changing event in buying or selling real estate, having your ducks in a row is a step closer to a smoother transaction for both you and your lawyer.
•Hayley Lewis is one of the law column writers from Treadwell Gordon