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Conveyancing

Think of conveyancing as the process which allows an owner to sell a property to another person. The meaning of Conveyancing in law is the legal or statutory process of transferring the title in that property from the owner to a buyer.

What is conveyancing?

Think of conveyancing as the process which allows an owner to sell a property to another person. The meaning of Conveyancing in law is the legal or statutory process of transferring the title in that property from the owner to a buyer.

Conveyancing generally starts with the owner and the buyer entering into a contract which sets out the terms on which the property is to be sold. The process ends when there is a settlement at which time title is transferred for the agreed purchase price.

Conveyancing essentially allows a buyer to pay for a property knowing fully what the buyer is paying for.

Conveyancing property

For example, a buyer would first want to know if a property is subject to any restrictions on use.

 

Likewise, conveyancing allows a seller to transfer title to a property to a buyer knowing that it will not only receive the purchase price but that the seller will not be exposed to claims from a buyer after settlement.

A conveyancing lawyer is best equipped to ensure this will occur.

 

A conveyancing lawyer is a fully qualified solicitor who is usually engaged after the agent has found a buyer for the owner’s property.

What does a conveyancing solicitor do?

So what are the conveyancing services typically carried out by a conveyancing lawyer. There are many because both the buyer and the seller have numerous obligations under a contract that need to be performed before key critical dates. Missing a key date could cost the seller a sale or could cost the buyer a deposit and the opportunity to buy the property.

 

When acting for a buyer, a conveyancing lawyer will typically:

 

  1. Carry out searches on the property and the property’s title – check for easements, type of title, heritage restrictions etc;

  2. Prepare, arrange execution and lodge legal documents – e.g. transfer documentation;

  3. Calculate the adjustment of rates and taxes;

  4. Attend to the Settlement of the property – act on your behalf, advise when the property is settled, liaise with your bank or financial institution when final payments are being made;

  5. Monitor critical dates; and

  6. Represent the buyer’s interests with a seller or their agent.

  7. When acting for the seller, a conveyancing lawyer will typically:

    1. ​Arrange execution of legal documents;

    2. Attend to the Settlement of the property – act on your behalf, advise when the property is settled, liaise with your bank or financial institution when final payments are being made;

    3. Monitor critical dates; and

    4. Represent the Seller in dealings with the buyer – e.g. request to extend dates, questions about searches etc.

 

So are there any other services undertaken by a conveyancing lawyer other than acting on a transfer from a seller to a buyer?

 

 Yes, it is recommended that you engage a conveyancer lawyer whenever you are:

  1. subdividing land;

  2. updating a title (eg. registering a death); and

  3. registering, changing or removing an easement.

How much should I expect to pay for conveyancing?

The cost of conveyancing will depend on whether you are buying or selling a property.  When you buy a property, the conveyancing lawyer will need to carry out searches to protect the buyer’s interests.

 

The costs of these searches not only depend on the number of searches to be carried out but also depend on the Council area. A buyer should usually allow between $350 and $550 for the cost of searches.

Where there is a real estate agent involved, the seller would typically be charged a commission on the sale that may be a certain percentage of the sale price. If a buyer retained the services of a buyer’s agent, the buyer would usually pay a fee to the buyer’s agent.

The buyer would also need to pay government charges on the transfer including registration fees and duty. These charges vary depending on the amount of the purchase price.

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