Buying property is a journey. There are bound to be plenty of potholes and hurdles along the way. It will take more time than you thought it would. It will take more money than you thought it would. It will also take more people than you thought it would. It will take a real estate agent, a lawyer, a banker. And it will take a property conveyancer. The key to working with all of these professionals is understanding who they are and what they do. Without this knowledge, you can often end up working with the wrong people, making those potholes and hurdles much more difficult to overcome.
What Is Conveyancing?
Conveyancing is simply the legal process for transferring the ownership of property. This transfer can happen for four reasons:
1. A seller is selling a house or land to a buyer.
2. An individual is transferring partial property ownership to another individual.
3. A property is being willed to an individual.
4. Property is being transferred due to a marriage break-up.
When any of these actions occur, conveyancing must take place. However, in Australia, for a property to be successfully conveyed, certain steps must be taken by the conveyancer:
1. Send cheques for unpaid rates
2. Inform applicable authorities about the ownership change
3. Deliver transfer documents to the Land Titles Office
4. Setup transfer Stamp Duty payment
5. Attend the settlement
6. Adjust charges, such as water and council rates
7. Abide by lender requirements
8. Acquire rate and planning certificates
9. Verify title status
10. Review any sale documents, including the contract
These tasks, however, can be boiled down to three main categories of responsibilities:
1. Settlement Arrangement
The final details of the settlement must be taken care of by the conveyancers of the various parties involved. From the buying side, the conveyancer will be involved with scheduling the settlement with the other parties, including the bank and the seller. This encompasses ensuring that the necessary funds for the vendor are in place and that the bank has the required cheque details. The buyer’s conveyancer must also be the contact point with the seller’s real estate agent in order for the property keys to be handed over.
From the selling side, the conveyancer will work with the buyer’s conveyancer and the bank to schedule a settlement time. It it also the seller’s conveyancer who contact’s the seller’s real estate agent for the property key transfer.
2. Legal Advice
The best professional to rely on for conveyancing needs is a lawyer. This is simply because they can provide legal advice to help clients to make their way through the process and make the best decisions for their situation.
When it comes to the buyer, a lawyer who provides conveyancing services can assist clients with both the vendor’s contract and the Contract of Sale on the property. They can quickly identify details, such as planning restrictions, that are unusual or any other terms that the client should pay close attention to. Additionally, a conveyancing lawyer can assist when it comes to the financing arrangements. They can help with mortgage document preparation, turning in necessary title details to the bank, and arranging the details of the settlement with the bank. And finally, a conveyancing lawyer can help to keep the costs down—they can ensure that no more than the property-associated costs are paid, including the necessary statutory fees and excluding the unnecessary council and water rates from before the settlement.
When it comes to the selling side, a conveyancing lawyer can come in very handy. If there are any special conditions that should be included in the contract, for whatever reason, the lawyer will not only advise clients but also assist with their inclusion. This might be especially useful for someone who is selling a house and buying another at the same time. The lawyer can then help them to ensure that those settlement dates coincide. A conveyancing lawyer can also be relied upon to be prepared with the necessary documents on the settlement date, to provide advise on any documents that need to be completed and given to the buyer, and to contact the mortgagee so that finances are discharged in time for the settlement.
3. Document Completion
In addition to be able to provide legal advice, conveyancing lawyers can also help prepare the legal documents that are involved in a real estate transaction. When it comes to the buyer’s side, a conveyancer can help clients to verify that the property has been legally and rightfully transferred to them by assisting with all of the transfer documents.
And then from the selling side, the conveyancer can assist with the Contract of Sale preparation, from the basics to the inclusion of more difficult to establish special conditions. And then there is the other required document for sellers: The Vendor’s Statement. This statement requires specific title and planning searches, as well as the certification that all relevant local laws have beed abided by—a conveyancer can also help with the compilation of this document. Finally, there is the possibility of ancillary documents that are required for the settlement process. In most cases, the right conveyancer can help with all of these.
In the end, the goal of the conveyancer, whether they are working for the buyer or the seller, is to make sure that their client both meets all of the legal obligations on their side of the transaction, as well as being legally protected during the transaction. To make sure that you are protected and prepared during your settlement process, contact Titlexchange.