Conveyancing Made Easy
Blog article by: Brendan Michie – Director at Hammond Pole Attorneys.
Buying a property can sometimes be a cumbersome process and before you can settle into your new home, there are contracts, lawyers, and procedures that need to be dealt with. As a law firm we regularly get questions about conveyancing, how it works and why you need us. I trust the following will make this part of the home buying process just that much easier.
What is a conveyancer?
A conveyancing attorney is one of the most important entities in the home-buying process. The conveyancer attends to almost all property related transactions by executing, amongst other things, deeds in the deeds office. It is the person who ultimately registers transfers and mortgage bonds in the deeds office on behalf of the seller and various financial institutions.
The buying and selling of property is a huge and complex transaction for most people and it is therefore crucial to appoint a suitable and qualified conveyancer. A good conveyancer is one who has years of experience and sufficient resources available to register property transfers quickly and seamlessly. Good administrative staff, paralegals and conveyancing software are all the things a reputable conveyancing practice would have.
Who chooses the conveyancer?
The choice of the conveyancer lies with the seller who is responsible for instructing an attorney to register the transfer of a property.
What should you be looking for in selecting a conveyancer?
Choose a conveyancer with a good track record who has been practicing for some time. It may also be worthwhile to find out if the conveyancer is registered with any of the major financial institutions, which can assist with the registration of bonds. Financial institutions usually evaluate conveyancers and ensures that the necessary infrastructure is in place to carry out conveyancing work. Software, IT, digital security, accreditation with the law society, B-BBEE status, etc. are all the elements that would be checked and vetted for the said firm to be on the bank’s panel.
What can go wrong?
The biggest threat to conveyancers at the moment, to my mind, is the threat of digital security by way of business email compromise (BEC).
BEC occurs when a client’s email system gets hacked and the fraudsters start interacting with the conveyancer as if they were the client with the aim of trying to get the funds involved in the conveyancing process, usually substantial sums, fraudulent paid to another account as opposed to the client’s account. Conveyancers are going out of their way to try and educate their clients about such risks because of the losses the industry has suffered in recent times.
How does the payment process work?
The purchaser pays the conveyancer’s costs as well as the bond costs if they are financing the purchase price by way of a home loan. These costs can be substantial and as such purchaser’s should investigate the costs before signing an offer on a property to ensure affordability. The estate agent will discuss this with the purchaser before presenting an offer.
What other services can your conveyancing attorneys assist with?
Most conveyancing firms do more than just property law and the services offered will vary from firm to firm. By way of example, Hammond Pole Attorneys has many services it offers other than conveyancing. These include Debt Collections, Family Law, Labour Law and the drafting of wills and administration of deceased estates.
Buying a new home is one of the most stressful things you can do, but with the right team on board you will be expertly and swiftly guided through the process.