Investors in Melbourne have engaged in a real-life game of Monopoly, with a record number of property swaps occurring in the past months.
Investors owning multiple titles across different buildings are engaged in a swap so that they may hold properties in just one building.
It is an unusual way of doing property transfers, Melbourne conveyancer Sharon Strauss said.
“Usually we only facilitate property transfers where money has exchanged hands, so it is quite unprecedented that we have clients wishing to swap one property for another similarly-valued property,” she said.
There have been several instances of property swaps in the past month, an occurrence which is usually unheard of.
Investors Margaret Jones, who previously owned three apartments, and Joe Nguyen, who previously owned two apartments, have swapped their properties for mutual benefit.
Jones exchanged two small apartments for one of Nguyen’s luxury apartments, which is in the same building as her other existing apartment.
“It is so much easier having all of your investments in the one place,” said Jones.
“Now I have more say in what happens in my building, rather than owning properties all over the place and having little power in the body corporate of the developments.”
Nguyen offers similar reasons for opting to swap his properties.
“I like being able to keep an eye on my investment apartments, which is not hard to do when they are all in the same building,” he said.
The swaps have allowed investors to save on the costs of selling their properties.
For these investors, it is as simple as organising for a title transfer to securely transfer ownership of the properties. Usually when selling a property, the title transfer is the final step in a long list of tasks.
Investors seeking a property swap arrangement are advised to be vigilant to avoid scammers. It is essential to organise the title transfer through a reputable conveyancing company, particularly for those inexperienced in property law.