LAWS3135/JURD7435 Land Dealings: Residential and Commercial Contracts

Student: Alice Chow

Please give us a brief overview of the main topics studied in the course
This is a course that aims to provide practical knowledge of the law of vendor and purchaser, with an emphasis on the standard form contract for sale of land in New South Wales. Aside from the obvious practical application of the conveyancing-related content covered in the course, the lecturer emphasises an analytical approach to reading judgments and legal reasoning. This is a practical elective that deals with conveyancing topics, including the requirements for a valid contract for the sale of land, issues arising in the exchange of contracts, vendors’ disclosure obligations, anti-gazumping legislation, and sale of land by auction. The course also covers the principles of agency, which have a wider application in the course of studying law. Several fundamental contract law issues are revisited in this course. As such, the course is beneficial for the purposes of reinforcing or otherwise remedying a deficient understanding of the law in relation to contract formation and breach of contract from Contracts 1 and 2.

What were the course assessments and your thoughts about them?
By default, assessment comprised a compulsory 100% final take home exam. However, students are able to opt- in for class participation or to complete a research essay as part of their assessment in the course. The final exam offers students the opportunity to demonstrate how much attention they paid in class and the level of their comprehension of the lecturer’s detailed analysis of legal arguments raised in case law.

What did you like about the course?
The lecturer’s method of teaching is very effective. His lectures are delivered with flair and humour, and his explanations of conceptually complex points of law are to be commended for their clarity. Given the time constraint of the course and the large volumes of readings that had been set, I also liked that I was familiar with a number of contract law cases studied in the Contracts core courses which were revisited and examined in the particular context of the law of vendor and purchaser.

What could be improved?
I took this course as an intensive elective over the summer break, and covering all of the course content within the one week duration of the course seemed very ambitious. I felt that coverage of some of the later topics was sketchy due to time constraints.