The Conveyancing Process
Category Buying and Selling
The Conveyancing Process:
Registration of Title Deeds and Mortgage Bonds
This article will will outline the conveyancing process with regard to the sale and purchase of a property and the registration of title deeds and mortgage bonds.
Step 1: Conclude a Written Sale Agreement
- A written deed of sale must be signed by both the Seller and Buyer.
- The buyer applies for a bond with a bank. Upon approval, the bank instructs a Bond Attorney to handle the registration of the bond.
- A Conveyancer or Transferring Attorney is appointed to handle the transfer process. The Buyer will be responsible for payment of all relevant transfer and bond registration costs.
- Bond Cancellation Attorneys are appointed to handle the cancellation of the Seller’s bond (if applicable). The Buyer will be responsible for payment of bond cancellation costs.
Step 2: Documentation to Conveyancing Attorney
The Conveyancer will request payment of the deposit into their trust account and then collect all of the required documentation from the Seller and Buyer including:
- Title Deeds and Bond Cancellation Figures;
- Rates Clearance Figures and Valuation Certificates;
- FICA Documents from both parties;
- Compliance Certificates (electrical, gas, borer etc.) from Seller;
- Particulars of Bond Granted to buyer including Guarantee Figures from Bond Attorney;
- Documentation from Buyer’s Conveyancing Attorney (if sale is subject to sale of Purchaser’s property).
Step 3: Suspensive Conditions to be Met
The deal may only proceed once the suspensive conditions in the Sale Agreement are met (such as the sale of the Buyer’s existing property).
Step 4: Preparation and Signing of Transfer Documents
Once the suspensive conditions have been met, the transfer and bond documents can be drafted by the relevant attorneys:
- The Buyer and Seller will sign the transfer documents;
- The Buyer signs the bond documents;
- Bond Registration Fees Payable by Buyer;
- Seller responsible for payment of outstanding taxes, rates and advance rates (if required) as per figures received from the relevant authority.
Step 5: Guarantees
- The Bond Registration Attorneys will provide Guarantees from the Bank to the Conveyancing Attorney for the purchase price or balance thereof where a deposit has been paid.
- The Bond Cancellation Attorneys will prepare for cancellation of Seller’s bond.
- Attorneys will ensure FICA compliance as required by law.
Step 6: Documents Prepared for Lodgement at Deeds Office
Once all Bond and Transfer Documents have been signed by the relevant parties, all costs paid, and all compliance certificates obtained, the documents can be prepared for lodgement at the Deeds Office.
The Buyer is responsible for payment of Deeds Office Registry Fees which are usually payed to Conveyancer prior to Lodgement.
Step 7: Deeds Office Process
Once all of the relevant documents have been prepared by the relevant attorneys, the documents will be simultaneously lodged at the Deeds Office. The process at the Deeds Office can take approximately 2 weeks.
- Day 1: Documents are Lodged and Captured on the Deeds Office system.
- Day 2-3: Documents are linked and batches captured on the system. Printouts of property and persons involved are made available for examiners.
- Day 4: Deeds undergo initial examination and are endorsed and remarked upon.
- Day 5: Documents are received back from initial examiner and sorted and forwarded to a senior examiner.
- Day 6: Senior examiner examines documents which are then passed or rejected.
- Day 7: Documents are received back from senior examiner and issued to Assistant Registrar.
- Day 8: Documents are re-examined by Assistant Registrar who may also reject deeds.
- Day 9: Deeds are received back from Assistant Registrar and issued back to the attorneys who need to sign off their documents.
- Days 10-14: This is the registration phase during which all outstanding matters need to be attended to. All matters must be finalised within 5 days.
Step 8: Registration and Proceeds
- The Conveyancing Attorney must now appear at the Deeds Office to register the Deeds.
- Ownership will now pass from the Seller to the Buyer.
- The Buyer’s Bond will be registered and the Seller’s Bond will be cancelled.
- Guarantees will be paid to the Conveyancing Attorney who will in turn pay out the Seller for the outstanding balance.
- The Seller will be responsible for the payment of the estate agent's commission.
- The Buyer may now take occupation of their new property.
Step 9: The Final Stages
- The Deeds Office releases the Title Deed and Bond after a period of approximately 3-6 months once the Deeds have been data captured.
- The original deeds are sent to the Conveyancing and Bond Registration Attorneys for delivery to the current bondholder or owner.
Author: Richard Abrahams