Cutting through the industry jargon

It’s our job to make selling your home simple and straightforward, which includes cutting through any industry jargon to ensure you know what’s going on, every step of the way. With that in mind, here’s our guide to common home sales terminology.

Private treaty

This is the term that describes the sales process when your property is either marketed at a set price, open to tender, or sold with a closing date, as opposed to an auction.


As one of the oldest and most respected ways to sell real estate, auctions are becoming increasingly popular. Your licensed Mint auctioneer will use all of their auction experience and know-how to create a dynamic, emotionally charged auction atmosphere that encourages competition and maximises bids.

Reserve price

If we decide an auction is the best way to achieve the optimum price for your property, we’ll discuss and set a reserve price with you prior to the auction. Only you and your Mint auctioneer will know the reserve price – the level at which you are willing to consider selling your property. Once the auction reaches your reserve price, your property is then effectively on the market, at which point we see how far beyond the reserve price the bidding will go.

Under offer/Under contract

This is good news. It means a suitable offer has been made on your property and you’ve accepted the offer, subject to one or more conditions (see below).

Subject to finance

Often, the buyer will need to borrow funds to purchase your property. In these cases, their offer is made ‘subject to finance approval’ from their financial institution, which can take up to 28 days to secure.

Subject to building inspection

It isn’t unusual for a buyer to make their offer ‘subject to a building inspection’. Generally, the buyer has 7-14 days from acceptance of their offer to arrange an inspection of the property by a suitably qualified professional, checking for structural faults that the seller must rectify.

Subject to a timber pest inspection

Buyers often make an offer ‘subject to a timber pest inspection’, which is normally completed 7-14 days from acceptance of their offer. If active timber pests, such as termites, are found, or if structural damage from previous pest activity is discovered, the seller must remedy or rectify the activity or damage.

Subject to sale

This refers to a situation where the buyer needs to sell their own home before they can complete the purchase of your property, in which case their offer will be made ‘subject to sale’ within an agreed time frame. When they’ve sold their home, your home is sold and the settlement of both properties will usually coincide.

The 48-hour clause

If you receive a ‘subject to sale’ offer on your property, you have the option of adding a 48-hour clause to the contract. This enables you to continue marketing your property for sale. In the event that you subsequently receive a cash or finance offer from another party, the original ‘subject to sale’ buyer then has 48 hours (2 business days) to make their offer unconditional, otherwise they have to withdraw from the sale, leaving you free to proceed with the new offer.


This is where an offer has no conditions attached to it, or any conditions (such as ‘subject to finance’ or ‘subject to sale’) have now been resolved. At this point the contract is unconditional and your property is considered sold.

Pre-settlement inspection

The buyer is entitled to a pre settlement inspection up to 7 days prior to settlement. This will ensure that the home is generally in the same condition as when originally inspected.


man on laptop

What is stamp duty in Australia?

Stamp duty is a tax on property purchases or the transfer of land charged by all state governments across Australia. States may charge different amounts based on the purchase price, location and the purpose of the loan – e.g. if you’re a first home buyer or if you have owned a property before.


Do you have to pay stamp duty when you sell a house?

No, as it stands, it’s only buyers who pay the tax, not sellers.


How much is stamp duty when buying a house?

This is the fun part. There’s a lot of stamp duty calculators out there and it can get a bit confusing – so we asked our friend Tony Reeves from Stirling Conveyancing to give us a short break down. (You’re welcome)


A simple breakdown of Stamp Duty rates for WA property sales

A simple breakdown of Stamp Duty rates for WA property sales

Still have questions? Feel free to get in contact with Stirling Conveyancing on (08) 6160 6600 or check out their website