When it comes to a stress-free settlement, a good conveyancer or solicitor is worth their weight in gold.
As a purchaser or seller of a property, you will require a professional to assist you with the property transfer. Both conveyancers and solicitors can help you review legal documents, check the contract of sale, assess taxes involved in the purchase, help you ensure payment is made and coordinate time of settlement.
What is conveyancing?
Simply put, conveyancing is an important part of buying and selling property as it is the process of transferring ownership of a legal title of property from one person or entity to another.
A conveyancer is a licensed and qualified professional whose job it is to provide advice and information about the sale of a property, prepare the documentation and conduct the settlement process. Conveyancers are often lawyers who undertake the work involved.
It is important for this work to be undertaken by a qualified legal professional to make sure your rights, as the purchaser or seller, are protected.
What does a conveyancer do?
Once you have agreement on any special conditions (which we can assist you in drafting) and the purchase price, the contracts are prepared and generally sent to your conveyancer. Your conveyancer will examine the contracts on your behalf to ensure they are accurate, and prepare a summary of the contracts, highlighting all the key details, and bringing specific requirements to your attention prior to signing.
The contract and summary of it will be sent to the purchaser for signing, and should be signed only after you have reviewed the summary by your conveyancer, and once you are comfortable with the contents of the contract.
Once you are satisfied with the contract you must return the signed document to the agent at your earliest convenience. Timely return of the signed contracts to your agent is imperative because the property is not legally secured until the contract is signed off by both parties. This means the seller is entitled to sell the property to another person if they feel you are taking an unnecessary amount of time to complete the contract and have not provided a reasonable explanation for the delay.
Upon receipt of the signed contract, the agent will forward the documents to the seller for signing. After the seller has signed the contract a five business day ‘cooling-off’ period commences. During this time the buyer may cancel the contract if circumstances change and they no longer wish to be bound by the terms of the agreement. Once the five-day period has expired, and the deposit has been paid, the contract becomes legally binding.
Why should I engage one for my property sale or purchase?
A conveyancer undertakes a multiplicity of tasks to ensure your interests are protected during the transfer process. They will prepare, clarify and lodge legal documents such as the transfer of land and contract of sale. A conveyancer will ensure the property description is accurate and in accordance with the certificate of title in addition to checking for easements, the type of title and any other information that needs addressing. They will represent your interests in negotiations with the seller or buyer and their agent and calculate the adjustment of rates and taxes payable at settlement.
Perhaps most importantly, a conveyancer will undertake to ensure the smooth finalisation of proceedings. They will coordinate the ideal settlement time for both the seller and the purchaser with their respective financiers, although the date of settlement is set out in the contract of sale. They will finally settle the property on your behalf by contacting your bank or financial institution to ensure payments are made at the appropriate time and place.
A property sale or purchase can be complex, so it pays to have a professional in your court to support you if and when the need arises.