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The 7 stages of conveyancing when buying in SA


Buying property or land is an exciting and significant decision to make, and the weeks ahead will be filled with words and paperwork you probably haven’t seen before. But don’t worry, we’re here to make it easier for you.

We help people buy property every day, and we’ve broken down the conveyancing journey to 7 simple stages. The process won’t always be easy, but you’ll have our team right there with you every step of the way.

1 – Form 1 and contract review

Before you sign a contract of sale and commit to buying a house, there are two things you do. Firstly, make sure you’ve been given a Form 1 from the seller, which will have all the information you need about the house. And secondly you should always have a lawyer look at the contract and the Form 1 for you. A lawyer can make sure that the contract is fair and balanced in your favour, with no hidden surprises. Once you’re happy with the contract, you’ll be required to sign it. Then once it’s exchanged, it will become the legally binding agreement between you and the seller. Then the next step in the process can begin.

2 – Conveyancing starter pack

We will send you something called a ‘conveyancing starter pack’. Inside you will find a few documents we need you to read and understand, then there will be a few documents we need you to sign. This is paperwork we can’t do for you, so it’s important to complete them as soon as you can. This will allow us to get moving with the lengthy process and it will give you a better chance of settling on time.

Along the way we’ll take care of all the parts we can do. Our team will guide you through the process and we’ll keep you informed about progress and any complexities or issues that may come up.

3 – Verify your identity

Buying a property also means legally registering as the official owner. To do that officially, you’ll need to get an identity verification so that the title deed goes to the right person, you!

You will receive a Land Title Verification of Identity form to complete and you’ll need to have your passport or birth certificate, as well as a driver license or identification card to prove your identity.

4 – Make sure your funds are ready

Next, you’ll need to get all your financial ducks in a row. What we mean by that is you need to get all the money side of things sorted and ready. If you have a loan from a bank, you’ll need to speak to them to make sure the funds are available for settlement.

To make it more convenient and simple for you, we use PEXA which means settlement can happen electronically for everyone involved. PEXA allows the funds to be paid automatically and quickly.

5 – Arrange a pre-settlement inspection

Before everything is finalised at settlement, you’ll want to arrange an inspection of the property. This will make sure nothing dramatic has changed since you signed the contract; for example, the walls haven’t been damaged when the previous owner was moving out. It also gives you an opportunity to make sure any specific repairs or details from the contract have been completed by the seller.

6 – Settlement Day

This is the day you’ve been waiting for! Everything is official – signed, sealed, and delivered.

The funds should be transferred, and all documents have been lodged with the Land Titles Office. You are now the registered owner and you can get the keys to your new home. We will still be doing some final paperwork for you, but for now you can pop the champagne and relax.

7 – Receive post-settlement letter and documents

The final stage of conveyancing is when you are delivered all the final paperwork. You are now the official owner on the title deed, and all payments and paperwork have been completed.

You should file away and keep these important documents.

Now it’s time to start thinking about a housewarming party, or just put your feet up. It’s been a long journey, but you’ve finally arrived. Congratulations and welcome home.

This article is provided for general information purposes only. Its content is current at the date of publication. It is not legal advice and is not tailored to meet your individual needs. You should obtain specialist advice based on your specific circumstances before taking any action concerning the matters discussed in this article.

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