Selling or buying a home can sometimes be a nerve-wracking process full of uncertainties. It is, therefore, our mission to assist you to make the decision of selling or buying your home as enjoyable as possible by providing you with sound advice throughout the process.
We are aware that every transaction is unique and we, therefore, suggest that you consult our Conveyancing Attorney to assist you in any transfer related queries you may have, so as to ensure that we can assist you in the transfer of your property in an effective and effortless manner.
For assistance, contact our Conveyancing Attorney Johané Janse van Vuuren by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone us on 0861 088 088 and ask to be connected to the conveyancing department.
Steps of Conveyancing
STEP 1: The purchaser and the seller enter into an agreement by way of an offer to purchase the immovable property, which then forms the basis of the transaction. The seller appoints the conveyancing attorney and if the seller has no specific preference, the estate agent who introduced the parties may introduce a conveyancing attorney.
STEP 2: If applicable, the purchaser will apply for finance from a financial institution to enable him/her to purchase the property. The offer to purchase should include this provision as a suspensive condition – which means that it is required to happen before the sale may occur and that the purchaser is not bound by the contract where the purchaser is unsuccessful in obtaining the required finance.
STEP 3: In general, there are three transactions which must be dealt with during the transfer of a property. Although the transactions are mostly administered to by three firms of attorneys, it is not uncommon for all three transactions to be effected by only one firm. The firms will act in the following capacities:
- Conveyancing/Transferring attorney whom will attend to the transfer of the property from the seller to the purchaser.
- Bond attorney whom shall register the bond over the property in favour of the financial institution that awarded a home loan to the purchaser. The immovable property functions as the security in this type of loan. The bond attorney primarily represents the existing bondholder and secondly the seller.
- Cancellation attorneys will cancel the seller’s existing bond over the property. These attorneys primarily represent the new bondholder and secondly the purchaser.
STEP 4: The conveyancing attorney manages the entire conveyancing process and takes the initiative for the remaining steps below. The conveyancing attorney will request the amount required to settle the sellers bond (“cancellation figures”) from the cancellation attorneys.
STEP 5: The conveyancing attorney will enquire from the bond attorneys whether or not a loan has been granted. In the event that a loan has been granted, the conveyancing attorney would also have to establish what loan amount is awarded to the purchaser. Should the loan granted be less than the purchase price of the property, a deposit will be due and payable by the purchaser.
STEP 6: The conveyancing attorney sends the cancellation figures to the bond attorney and then request guarantees for the payment of the purchase price, which the bond attorney then provide to the conveyancing attorney.
STEP 7: Should there be an existing bond over the property, the bond attorneys must issue two guarantees. The first is in favour of the cancellation bank for payment of the cancellation figures together with interest; the second is in favour of the conveyancing attorney for the remainder of the purchase price. In the event that there is no existing bond over the property which should be cancelled, there will only be one guarantee in favour of the conveyancing attorney for the payment of the purchase price.
STEP 8: The conveyancing attorney will send the original guarantee (in favour of the cancellation bank) to the cancellation attorney and will keep the original guarantee in favour of his firm on the office file.
STEP 9: The conveyancing attorney will request the rates, lights, water and refuse removal clearance figures form the local authority together with the levy figures from the homeowners’ association or body corporate, if applicable. A transfer of a property cannot be registered in the Deeds Registry Office without such clearance certificate. It is important to note that the seller will be required to pay a few months in advance in order to obtain such a clearance certificate, but any credit at the date of transfer will be calculated on a pro-rata basis as at the date of registration and the credit must be refunded to the seller.
STEP 10: The conveyancing attorney will now attend to the drafting of the required transfer papers and the parties will be required to attend at the conveyancing attorney’s office to sign such documentation. Each party will be required to provide their original identity documents and income tax numbers.
STEP 11: The purchaser will now be obligated to pay the conveyancing attorney’s transfer costs and the transfer duty. A pro forma account will be presented to the purchaser with estimated costs and the final account will only be provided after the property has been registered.
STEP 12: The conveyancing/transferring attorney will instruct all the other attorneys to lodge their documents simultaneously at the relevant Deeds Registry Office. The documents are now processed in the Deeds Registry Office and this can take up to 15 working days, provided that the documents were not rejected and do not need to be re-lodged again.
STEP 13: Once the transaction is registered in the Deeds Registry Office, the purchaser becomes the owner of the property. All the parties will be informed on the date of registration. The conveyancing attorneys will draft a final statement of account to showcase how the funds were applied throughout the transaction. The amount required to cancel the seller’s bond is paid and the seller receives the net proceeds of the sale.
STEP 14: The Deeds Registry Office will update its records and if there is a bond registered on behalf of the purchaser over the property, the original title deed will be sent to the relevant financial institution. If there is no bond registered over the property, the original title deed will be sent to the purchaser directly.
The seller appoints the conveyancing attorney and if the seller has no specific preference, the estate agent who introduced the parties may introduce a conveyancing attorney.
The main focus of South-Africa’s land registration system is to provide information to the public regarding ownership of land and real rights in the property. The primary purpose of registration of a property is to register and protect these rights. A purchaser of a property only becomes the owner of the property once the property is registered in the purchaser’s name in the deeds office.
The seller is therefore obliged to transfer the property into the name of the new owner to grant him the protection of his rights.
The ownership of immovable property is only obtained upon registration of a property in the purchaser’s name at the relevant Deeds Registry Office. The title deed, which is registered in the purchaser’s name, will primarily be deemed proof of ownership of the property.
Usually, it can take up to three months from the date of sale until the property is registered in the purchaser’s name.
Once the deed of sale is signed by the parties the relevant documents will be lodged in the Deeds Office, it takes anything between 5 – 10 working days for the documents to be examined and approved by the Deeds Office examiners.
The purchaser is responsible for the transfer fees. The transfer fees consist of fees of the conveyancer and the bond fees of the bond attorney. The transfer fees are calculated according to a fixed tariff prescribed by the Law Society of the Northern Provinces. The conveyancing fees are calculated as follows:
In addition to the transfer fees, the purchaser is also liable to pay the transfer duty, which is tax levied on the value of any property acquired by any person (including Companies, Close Corporations and Trusts). These rates are prescribed by SARS, as can be seen in the table below:
|Value of the property (R)||Rate|
|0 – 900 000||0%|
|900 001 – 1 250 000||3% of the value above R900 000|
|1 250 001 – 1 750 000||R10 500 + 6% of the value above R 1 250 000|
|1 750 001 – 2 250 000||R40 500 + 8% of the value above R 1 750 000|
|2 250 001 – 10 000 000||R80 500 +11% of the value above R2 250 000|
|10 000 001 and above||R933 000 + 13% of the value above R10 000 000|
The seller is responsible for payment of all the rates, taxes and levies of the property up until the date of registration of the transaction and the fees, so as to cancel an existing bond over the property.
For a stepwise guide on the process of transferring property, click here.
We are aware that every transaction is unique and needs precision planning. Therefore, we advise that you consult our conveyancer to assist you in any transfer related queries you may have, so as to ensure that we can assist you in the transfer of your property in an effective and effortless manner.
To obtain a complete breakdown of all the relevant costs and disbursements in purchasing and transferring a property, please make use of our transfer and bond cost calculator.