Buying a house - How to choose your team.

cairns mortgage brokers

Buying a home isn’t something you do every day, so how do you know who to trust when it comes to choosing your conveyancer, mortgage broker, or pest and building inspector?

The answer is pretty simple – do your research.  First, understand what you need each contractor actually does as part of the home buying process:


Your conveyancer is responsible for ensuring everything goes smoothly and that the legal aspects of your purchase are done properly.  They do this by:

  • Perusing and discussing your contract with you prior to your signature;
  • Creating special condition clauses as may be required by you;
  • Liaising with your financial institution/broker to arrange funds for your purchase or the release of your mortgage to be ready on the settlement date;
  • Discussing your legal options under all contract conditions (building and pest, finance, due diligence);
  • Preparation and stamping of Queensland Government land transfer documentation
  • Preparation of transfer duty concession forms;
  • Obtaining property searches so that you don’t get any surprises after settlement has been completed;
  • Attending settlement and ensuring that you receive a debt free and unencumbered title at settlement; and
  • A fully comprehensive settlement report that you can refer to should you need any information about your purchase/sale down the track.

Mortgage Broker

Your mortgage broker is responsible for finding you the most suitable finance option available from a panel of lenders.  They can work with you to find loans with lower interest rates, offset accounts, or other features which meet your needs. 

They can also help you obtain finance if your circumstances are a little outside the box.  Having a good mortgage broker is particularly important for people who are self-employed, already have multiple rental properties, or who might not otherwise fit the “big 4’s” lending criteria.

Pest Inspector

Your pest inspector is responsible for ensuring the home you buy isn’t riddled with termites or other problematic pests.  If they do find a problem, they will also advise on the severity of the problem and appropriate treatment options so you can decide if you still want to proceed with the purchase.

Building Inspector

Your building inspector is responsible for making sure the house isn’t going to fall down around your ears.  They look for things like:

  • Structural damage;
  • Conditions conducive to structural damage;
  • Major defects to secondary building elements;
  • Minor defect summary;
  • Maintenance advice; and
  • Safety hazards.

How to Choose Your Team

Regardless of whether you are looking for a conveyancer, mortgage broker, or pest or building inspector, the process is similar.


  1. Ask friends and family who have recently purchased a property who they used and if they were satisfied with the service the received;
  2. Check reviews for companies in your area; and
  3. If you have already found one part of your team, ask them who they recommend. Conveyancers usually liaise with pest and building reports and deal with financiers for all their clients and will know if a particular provider is always late or consistently goes above and beyond for their clients.


This is simple – find out how much your top 2 or 3 choices charge.  Look for fixed fees and service guarantees.  Remember that cheapest isn’t always best, but make sure that the quote covers everything you need them to do.