Transfer and Conveyancing Fees in South Africa

Published Date: August 12, 2022

If you are in the process of purchasing a home, then you are probably wondering what all the additional fees are. The fact is that there are a number of fees you must budget for when purchasing a home. Some of the fees you can expect to pay include Deeds Office fees, transfer duty and the conveyancing attorney’s fees.

People are often confused about whether transfer and conveyancing fees are the same or not. The answer is that they are, but they do differ from transfer duty. Transfer/conveyancing fees are the fees payable to the conveyancing attorney, often referred to as the “transfer attorney”, while transfer duty is the tax that is levied and calculated on the purchase price or the value of the home you are purchasing, whichever is higher. Transfer Duty is payable by the buyer to SARS and the applicable rates can be found here. If the buyer needs a home loan to finance the purchase of the property, then conveyancing fees will also be payable to the attorney who attends to the registration of the buyer’s bond.  This conveyancing attorney is known as the bond registration attorney.

In this article, we will discuss conveyancing fees in South Africa as well as provide you with the conveyancing fee guidelines for 2022.

Conveyancing Attorney Fees: What You Are Paying for

To register the transfer of the property from the seller into the buyer’s name, a conveyancing attorney is appointed. Although the seller typically gets to appoint the conveyancing attorney, it is the buyer who will be required to pay the conveyancing attorney’s fees and these fees must be paid in full before the home can be registered in their name at the Deeds Office. The conveyancing attorney will collect his fees, Deeds Office fees, as well as transfer duty from the purchaser and will then pay the required amounts over to SARS and the Deeds Office. As mentioned above, buyers must keep in mind that should they require a home loan to finance the purchase of the property, the bank who granted the loan will also appoint a conveyancing attorney.  The bank’s conveyancing attorney, referred to as the “bond registration attorney”, will attend to registration of the bond at the Deeds Office. In this case, the buyer will be liable for conveyancing fees payable to each of the attorneys, this is in respect of the transfer and in respect of the bond. Registration of the transfer and registration of the bond will take place simultaneously.

Conveyancing Fees Guidelines for 2022

Even though there are no prescribed fees that conveyancing attorneys must charge, there are some guidelines that most conveyancing attorneys follow to ensure that they are not grossly over- or under-charging a buyer. The conveyancing fee guidelines are published by the Law Society of South Africa and updated annually. The latest updated guideline was published in May of 2022, and can be viewed here.

Adams and Adams has a reputable conveyancing department that is able to assist you in the process of either buying or selling a property. Our conveyancing team has in-depth knowledge and experience when it comes to the transfer of properties and will ensure that the transaction runs smoothly. To find out more about all the fees involved in the transfer of property, contact our team.

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