When it comes to buying real estate, a lot actually. Although buyer’s name may seem a simple part of the contract, many buyers get it wrong.
Getting a name wrong can cost tens of thousands of dollars in extra transfer duty. Take this example from our files (names changed of course):
Mr & Mrs Smith signed a contract to buy a family home, describing themselves as “John Smith and Emily Smith”. Before settlement was completed, the Smiths told us they wanted the Smith Family Trust to be the owner of the property. This raises a potential double transfer duty problem! The contract the Smiths signed will attract transfer duty at the usual rate. A transfer to the Smith Family Trust means an additional $40,000 in duty!
Although the Office of State Revenue of WA will allow duty-free transfers between family members in some circumstances, they will not permit a duty-free transfer to a discretionary family trust.
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