Leaders in Newcastle conveyancing

LEADING NEWCASTLE LAWYERS: Damian Burgess, left, and James Thomson.
LEADING NEWCASTLE LAWYERS: Damian Burgess, left, and James Thomson.

Experience makes all the difference to getting a successful result in any conveyancing matter. When conveyancing mistakes are made, they can be costly.

Few lawyers can boast they have studied at Harvard Law School - but James Thomson, a Director and Principal Lawyer at Burgess Thomson is one of them.

Burgess Thomson is a longstanding Newcastle law firm specialising in three main areas of practice:

  1. Property Law & Conveyancing
  2. Wills, Estate Planning & Deceased Estates
  3. Business & Commercial Law

James, who boasts over 19 years experience, completed the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School this year and has also completed National Mediation Accreditation Training at The Resolution Institute and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners.

He holds a Master of Laws degree from The University of Sydney and Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) degrees from The University of NSW.

"It is essential to have an experienced team of lawyers and conveyancers that can negotiate for your interests," James said. "Burgess Thomson are extremely thorough and detailed in our approach to conveyancing, ensuring that nothing is missed to protect our clients' interests and get them the best possible result in their property transactions.

"We review every contract and the special conditions in detail and explain these to our clients in person or over the telephone. Anything that we negotiate we ensure is included in the contract special conditions. Our sale contracts for vendors also contain terms which protect the vendors' interests if things go wrong, for example, if a purchaser defaults or delays settlement or seeks to cause issues with a final inspection. Everything is done to protect our clients' interests."

Burgess Thomson's clients include families and individuals, as well as small and medium business owners.

"We deal a lot with first home buyers, clients selling their existing property and upgrading to buy a larger home, people that are buying off the plan, and people that are downsizing to smaller residences or retirement residences," James said.

"We also conduct land purchases, rural, commercial and industrial property sales and purchases. Clients are often also buying or transferring a property into their self-managed superannuation fund or buying/selling a business premises."

Buying and selling property throws up many conveyancing challenges.

"A client may be selling a property and needs the funds from their sale to purchase another property," James said. "We are able to negotiate a simultaneous settlement of their sale and purchase, to ensure a smooth move without the need for bridging finance. We are also able to assist with negotiating early access to the property they are purchasing, to reduce the stresses of having to move from one property to another on the same day."

Burgess Thomson are often able to negotiate a reduced deposit of 5% or arrange a deposit bond.

"Clients often worry about missing out on a property, getting into a bidding war with another buyer, and being gazumped," James said. "In these cases, we recommend clients seek to exchange contracts promptly with either a cooling-off period or a subject-to-finance clause. The advantage for our clients is it takes the property off the market, while they are able to complete building and pest inspection reports and arrange their formal finance approval and this minimises the risk of being gazumped. If people are buying into a strata unit we encourage them to obtain a strata inspection report to identify any issues with the building management or special levies which could expose a purchaser to unforeseen expenses."

For first home buyers, the team at Burgess Thomson are able to complete all documentation required to enable them to get the stamp duty exemption on properties purchased up to $650,000.

Burgess Thomson was founded in 1983 by Damian Burgess who boasts over 40 years experience in the law and continues to practice at the firm.

Sharon Musgrave is a Licensed Conveyancer at Burgess Thomson with over 30 years' conveyancing experience across residential, commercial and industrial properties. Senior Paralegal Sue Cheal supports the conveyancing team with her precise attention to detail and practical experience in the legal profession, having been with the firm for over 27 years. Together, they take the time to get to know their clients and provide regular updates so clients are kept fully informed during what can sometimes be a stressful time in their lives.

"We conduct all our settlements electronically using PEXA, which means that clients receive funds from their sale on the same day and properties are transferred into our clients' names in real time at settlement," James said.

Burgess Thomson is located at 400 Hunter Street, Newcastle, directly opposite the new Courthouse, with parking conveniently located in the HarbourPark carpark in Argyle Street. The Civic light rail stop is also only metres from their front door.

For more information, call 02 4929 5602, visit www.burgessthomson.com.au or email mail@burgessthomson.com.au.

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