Information guide to conveyancing
1. What is conveyancing?
Conveyancing describes the legal procedure whereby ownership of immovable property is changed (i.e. ownership is "conveyed" from the existing owner to the purchaser).
2. Conveyancer’s actions on receipt of Deed of Sale
3. Existing bond on the property
4. The role of the municipality
The Conveyancer will simultaneously write to the Municipal authority having jurisdiction over the area in which the property is situated and will request from them the following information/documentation:
5. Preparation of preliminary documents
On receipt of the Deeds Office particulars and subject to all suspensive conditions having been fulfilled, the Conveyancing attorney will proceed to prepare his "preliminary documentation". These documents comprise the following:
6. Signature and costs
When these documents are ready, the parties will be contacted by the Conveyancing attorneys with a view to arranging an appointment for the signature of the documents. On signature of the documents, the Conveyancing attorneys will ask the purchaser to settle the transfer costs. The account which the Conveyancer will present will comprise four elements being the following:
It is important that the purchaser settle these costs at least one month before scheduled date of transfer, as the Conveyancer is required to pay the transfer duty to the Receiver of Revenue before one may approach the Deeds Office. The Conveyancer will simultaneously recover from the purchaser his pro rata share of rates and taxes in order that a Rates clearance can also be obtained. As soon as these costs have been paid, the Conveyancer will forward his cheque plus supporting documentation to the Receiver of Revenue for the issue of a transfer duty receipt. A cheque will simultaneously be sent to the Municipal Authority for purposes of the issue of a Rates Clearance Certificate.
7. Purchaser’s bond
In the interim the Conveyancing attorney will receive notification from the attorneys instructed by the financial institution who will be granting the purchaser a bond advising of their identity and of the nature and extent of their instructions. The Conveyancing attorney will immediately send to these "bond attorneys", a draft copy of the new title deed of the property. This document is termed the "flysheet". This document enables the bond attorneys to determine the description of the property which is to be bonded and furthermore to determine the full details of the purchaser. The bond attorneys will then prepare their own documentation and arrange for the purchaser to call at their offices to sign their papers and pay their costs.
8. Final phase
When everybody is ready (the bond attorneys documents are signed, the bond cancellations attorneys consent to cancellations in their possession and duly signed by the bond holder, the transfer duty receipt and rates clearance have been received), the Conveyancing attorney will contact all the other attorneys involved and arrange simultaneously "lodgement" at the Deeds Office. On the pre-arranged date all the attorneys simultaneously hand their folders of paper into the Deeds Office. These papers are then collated by the Deeds office and allocated to a specific Examiner.
The Deeds Office Examiner inspects all the documents, and if found to be on order, approves the documents for registration. This procedure in the Deeds Office takes approximately ten days. If any difficulties are discovered in any of the papers, the documents are 'rejected". If the documents are approved for registration, the Conveyancing attorney, after ensuring that all the finances for the transaction have either been paid or alternatively secured, will arrange with all the attorneys concerned for the actual registration to take place. At the moment of registration, ownership passes from the seller to the purchaser and the transaction is complete.
9. How long does it take?
It is self-explanatory from the above that that it is very difficult to estimate precisely how long a transfer should take from the time that the Conveyancing attorney receives his instructions. If one is forced to make an estimate, then one can assume that if all the parties involved in the transaction perform their functions timeously, that the entire transaction could be completed within a period of six to eight weeks from the time of receipt of the initial Deed of Sale.
Miltons Matsemela Used with permission