Conveyancing is the legal term used to describe the immovable property transfer process in South Africa. Understanding the stages in the conveyancing process and having the required information and documents ready when buying or selling a home can help to minimise delays in the conveyancing process.

Briefly, the buying and conveyancing process starts with the signing of the purchase agreement by both buyer and seller. Once the buyer’s bond has been approved, the bond cancellation attorneys are appointed to handle the cancellation of the existing bond on the seller’s name. The bond registration attorneys register the new bond, and the conveyancing attorneys handle the conveyancing process. All of the above can be done by the same attorneys if they are appointed as bond registration, cancellation, and transfer attorneys.

Once the property transfer duty has been paid, the attorneys lodge the required documents at the South African Deeds Office, where the ownership is registered on the buyer’s name. Though the above may be complex, such are handled by experienced attorneys. The main steps involved are discussed in a bit more detail below.

Sale Agreement and Bond Application

Once the seller accepts the purchase offer, a valid sale agreement is in place. Unless the purchaser buys the home without a home loan, the purchaser must apply for a bond.

Appointment of the Conveyancer

Unless otherwise stipulated in the offer to purchase agreement, the seller appoints the conveyancer to handle the property transfer process. The conveyancer conducts the FICA for both seller and buyer. This is a process whereby the residential and identification information of the seller and buyer is verified. In addition, the conveyancer applies for the bond cancellation figures, after which the bank provides the bond cancellation lawyer with the original Title Deed.

Signing of Documentation

The buyer and seller sign the relevant documents at the conveyancer who also requests the rates and taxes figures from the municipality. The conveyancing cannot be completed until all outstanding rates and taxes have been paid. The municipality issues the clearance certificate.

Payment of Transfer Duty

The purchaser pays the transfer duty to SARS, and the conveyancing attorney requests a receipt from SARS through the e-filing system. The payment process can also be handled by the conveyancer.

Registration at the Deeds Office

The conveyancer lodges the relevant documents at the Deeds Office, and once the registration is done, the property transfer is completed.

Where to Get Professional Assistance

Avoid delays in the property transfer process. Get in touch with our attorneys for bond registration, cancellation, and conveyancing assistance.

Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Call on our attorneys for legal advice, rather than relying on the information herein to make any decisions. The information is relevant to the date of publishing.