I’m going to sign a Contract of Sale, what should I do to protect my interests?

It is advisable to see a Solicitor prior to signing to have them go through the Contract and give you advice in detail. The Solicitor will also give you some ideas as to additional Special Conditions to include in the Contract to protect your interests further.
If applying for finance, it is a good idea to put a “subject to finance approval” Special Condition into the Contract as this will allow you to cancel the Contract if you cannot obtain finance. (Be aware that the cooling off period and “subject to finance” are not available when the property is bought at auction).
We highly recommend putting a Special Condition in the Contract stating that all fixtures and fittings be “in working order”. This is so that, for example, if a heater is found not to be working at the final inspection the vendor will need to have it fixed prior to settlement at the vendor’s cost.
You may also wish to put in a Special Condition allowing for building and pest inspections to be conducted to your satisfaction.