Conveyancing

What Do Conveyancers Do? Understanding the Nuances of Transferring Property Titles

By May 11, 2017 No Comments

When you buy or sell a house, you will sooner or later find yourself in need of a conveyancer. This professional (or firm) will facilitate the transfer the title of a property to and from the seller to the buyer.

But as you inform yourself about the process, you may have more specific question about this profession that is so crucial to making sure everything stays within the realm of legality. Most importantly, what do conveyancers do, exactly? That’s what this article aims to answer.

What Do Conveyancers Do?

In short, and as mentioned above, conveyancing refers to the transferring of title rights from one entity to the other. But within that process, a number of nuances do exist that are important to keep in mind.

The Australian Department of the Premier and Cabinet has outlined a number of responsibilities that any professional and legitimate conveyancer will be responsible for. These can include:

  • Preparing and clarifying any legal documents, such as the contract of sale.
  • Conducting research about both the property and its title certificate.
  • Representing one of the involved parties in preparation of and during the settlement.
  • Partnering with the other party’s conveyancer to arrange settlement details.
  • Working with your financial institution to determine how and when payments will be made and received.
  • Contacting your financial institution, if applicable, regarding how and when the final payments are to be made and received
  • Arranging potential grants for which home owners might be eligible.
  • Negotiating offers on your behalf with a vendor or their agent
  • Filing all necessary documents with the relevant agencies.

In other words, a conveyancer works on more than just the official transfer of title. They become a crucial player in the property buying and selling process,  making sure that every part of the transaction occurs within the rule of law.

Who Works With a Conveyancer?

Typically, both parties involved in a property title transaction will partner with a lawyer or conveyancer to make sure the transaction will occur exactly according to plan. Particularly if you don’t represent a larger entity, chances are that you are not completely familiar with the nuances required to ensure the success of the transaction.

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How a Conveyancer Helps the Buyer

While conveyancing is necessary for both sides of a title transfer, the benefits for home buyers are particularly pronounced. In fact, many of the above-mentioned core activities associated with this profession relate directly to property buyers’ needs.

Preparing and lodging legal documents, for example, typically occur on behalf of the buyer. A thorough search on the property and its title certificate help you ensure that everything is correct as claimed, and increase confidence in your decision. Finally, conveyancers will also put your deposit money in a safe trust account, and can calculate the adjustments of rates and taxes associated with both the property and the purchasing process on your behalf.

Throughout the process, conveyancers are legal advocate of the buying party. They help to explain the legal process as well as individual documents, ensuring that you know exactly what’s going on as you move closer toward purchasing the property.

what do conveyancers do

Conveyancer hands over keys after transferring property titles.

How a Conveyancer Helps the Seller

Of course, that’s not to underestimate the benefits property sellers get from working with a conveyancer, either. On this side of the equation, legal professionals ensure that all paperwork is filed correctly, and nothing is missing for a legal and successful transaction.

In addition, they can move you through the process as well, and can answer or relay any questions the buyer (or their representation) might have about it. Crucially, they can also help you understand exactly what federal laws and regulations you will have to follow to sell your property.

Does a Conveyancer Have to be a Lawyer?

Given the numerous legal activities and requirements mentioned above, it’s easy to draw a connection between conveyancers as lawyers. In fact, that does not necessarily have to be the case. While lawyers with the right qualifications tend to be the most sought-after professionals, it is possible to obtain these qualifications without a law degree, as well.

Conveyancers who are not lawyers, of course, do need to be fully licensed in order to be eligible for this type of work. They will also be limited in some of their activities; for example, the contract of sale when selling a home has to be prepared by an active lawyer.

In short, conveyancers do not have to be lawyers – but they do have to have a very specific set of qualifications. That, in turn, makes finding the right professional for your needs absolutely critical in a successful transaction.

How Can I Find a Conveyancer For My Needs?

Not all conveyancers are created equal. As a result, finding the right professionals to work with for your property settlement is an absolute key to success. Look for individuals or firms who are fully licensed. In addition, it makes sense to find professionals who have experience in specific settlements and types of properties like the one you will be involved in.

Understanding what a conveyancer does is crucial to finding the right professional for your needs. Transferring title rights might sound simple, but is actually a nuanced and complicated process. The earlier and more thoroughly you research potential firms or individuals to partner with, the better.

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