Conveyancing Attorneys: What They Do and Why You Need One

Published Date: June 21, 2022

Buying a new home or property is an exciting prospect; however, the process may seem complicated and many do not fully understand the costs involved.

In this article, we will discuss how conveyancing fees work, but more importantly, whether you need a conveyancing attorney and what a conveyancing attorney does.

What Do Conveyancing Attorneys Do?

A conveyancing attorney is an extremely important part of the property purchasing process. A conveyancing attorney is an admitted attorney who is specialised in property law and who has passed a special examination in order to be admitted and allowed to practice as a conveyancing attorney.  Conveyancing attorneys attend to, amongst others, the registration of the transfer of a property from a seller to a purchaser (often referred to as the “transferring attorney”), or to the registration of a purchaser’s mortgage bond on behalf of the financial institution who finances the purchase price (often referred to as the “bond registration attorney”) or to the cancellation of the seller’s existing bond over the property (often called the “bond cancellation attorney”).

Once the sale has been concluded and the transferring attorney appointed, the transferring attorney will prepare all the necessary documents for signature by both the seller and the purchaser.  These documents include the power of attorney as well as other documents, affidavits or applications which may be necessary to comply with legislation as well as deeds office procedures. In addition to preparation of the aforesaid documents and the draft deed of transfer, the transferring attorney will also attend to obtain a municipal rates clearance certificate as well as a SARS transfer duty receipt.

Where a purchaser requires a loan to finance the purchase, then the financial institution who advances the funds will instruct a bond registration attorney to register a mortgage bond over the property. The bond registration attorney will act as an agent for the financial institution and prepare the loan – and ancillary documents as well as the mortgage bond for signature by the purchaser.

How Conveyancing Fees Work

Conveyancing fees can be defined as the fees that are charged by the conveyancing attorney based on the value of the property that is purchased or the value of the bond, in the case where a bond is to be registered. It is important to state that the purchaser will typically be liable for the fees apayable to both the transferring attorney as well as the bond registration attorney. The seller is usually liable for payment of the cancellation attorney’s fees for cancellation of the seller’s existing bond. One can find out more about these fees and how they are calculated by reading through the guidelines issued by the Law Society of South Africa.

Is a Conveyancing Attorney Optional?

A conveyancing attorney is not optional and one must be appointed to a sale as soon as the agreement has been concluded.  Typically, the seller will appoint the conveyancing attorney even though the attorney will act in the best interest of both the seller and the purchaser.

Conveyancing Attorneys Pretoria

Adams and Adams is a law firm with a skilled and experienced conveyancing team that will ensure that your property transaction will proceed smoothly. To find out more about what the conveyancing process entails and how we can help you, contact us at Adams and Adams.

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