Buyer’s Warning Statement–Form 30C
Under Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act (PAMDA) of 2000, beginning October 1, 2010, all residential property buyers in Queensland must sign a form called a Warning Statement or Form 30c. This is required to be attached to the proposed contract and signed before entering the contract of sale.
This form advices the buyer to:
(1) Seek independent legal advice as to property purchase; and
(2) Obtain an independent valuation of the property he or she intends to buy.
Form 30C ensures that the buyer understands his rights and obligations to a proposed contract before signing it.
The Warning Statement also contains important consumer protection information regarding the cooling off period.
Form 30C recommends the buyer to exercise extreme caution in accepting advice from anyone referred to by the seller or his agent. Unlike a solicitor, a real estate agent is not qualified to give legal advice on the contract, draft clauses or modify the standard contract in any way. Obtaining legal advice from an independent solicitor prevents possibility of fraud and misleading advice. Consequently, the Form recommends the buyer to clarify any query or concern especially regarding Warning and Disclosure Statements in the contract.
Further, Form 30c recommends the buyer to obtain Independent valuation of the residential property to be certain of the fairness of the purchase price. In some instances, the chosen valuer may have an interest or relationship with the seller or his agent. To avoid this, it is suggested that valuation advice be obtained from an independent Queensland Valuer. Valuation may be obtained prior to the execution of the contract or within the cooling off period.
A separate section of the Form outlines the 5-business day cooling period (“the period”) within which the buyer may terminate the contract. The period starts one business day after the contract is received by the buyer or the buyer’s solicitor.
The Contract can be terminated by a signed and dated notice of termination sent by the buyer or the buyer’s solicitor to the seller indicating the intent to terminate under Section 307A of PAMDA. Termination of the contract within the cooling off period is a legal right of the buyer subject however to a termination penalty of 0.25% of the proposed purchase price. If the buyer decides to terminate the contract, the seller is obliged to return the balance of the deposit within 14 days from notice of termination.
After the cooling period expires, the buyer becomes legally bound by the terms of the contract.