By Reporter 20 June 2013 | 1 minute read

While the title sounds simple enough, SMART QUESTIONS is more than just about the process of asking - it's about researching, exploring and understanding the process behind investing.

Title: SMART QUESTIONS Property Investors must ask their Solicitor

Author: Robert Balanda

ISBN: 978-0-987-36826-3

Price: $29.95

Blurb: Costly mistakes in real estate transactions can often be avoided if you take sound legal advice. Before talking to their solicitors, every property investor should read this book. SMART QUESTIONS answers 75 frequently asked questions that property buyers ask about leases, deposits, structures, getting finance approved, buying off the plan, body corporates, and much, much more.

Most suited to investors who: Investors who are actively looking to educate themselves, particularly those who want a more in-depth or micro knowledge about the process.

Asking questions is part of what we do here at Smart Property Investment, so a book listing the 'smart questions' we should be asking suits us to the ground. What's good is that the author, Robert Balanda, is a legal expert and so has that side under control and has a good level of understanding about what is required.

The book is divided into ten different sections - each with their own associated questions which work as sub-chapters - that cover the investment journey from before-signing, negotiating, finance approval, body corporate, off the plan, deposits and options, right through to searches, due diligence, leases and extra questions.

What's not always clear is whether you should be taking Mr Balanda's response as gospel, or whether you're meant to be asking these to seasoned experts in other fields - if that's the case, then it would have been good to see suggestion boxes, e.g. Ask this to a real estate agent or, Ask this to your broker.

The absolute glorious part of this book are the excerpts where he says 'Add this to your contract', such as the clause on page 147 about floods and other disasters, which helps you make the property subject to a flooding check. These little nuggets of gold are throughout and, even if you don't end up using them, they'll at least get you thinking about the more creative things you can do with your contract to get a better sale or to protect yourself.

Another great thing, which may be due to Mr Balanda's background, is how 'to the point' the book is. It's clear, often sectioned out (A, B, C etc) and doesn't leave you waiting for an answer - a good thing considering he covers 75 questions in a book of 184 pages.

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