Conveyancing for home sellers

Conveyancing (or more correctly ‘conveyance’) is the legal term for the process by which ownership of property is transferred from one person to another. A conveyance is a deed (legal document) that conveys a house from the vendor (seller) to the buyer, thereby transferring ownership.

What should I look for in a conveyancer?

Choose an SA Registered Conveyancer who offers electronic settlements as well as traditional paper. It’s advisable to use a professional who knows the area and is familiar with local planning laws. You can go by personal recommendations from family, but this often excludes newer, more innovative and often less expensive conveyancing firms in your area. 

Do research online, make calls and decide which conveyancer is best for you. Some real estate agents offer referrals or have their own in-house conveyancing service, although you may be better off with an independent conveyancer, as an agent’s advice could lead to a conflict of interest.

What does a conveyancer require from the seller? 

If you’re selling, your conveyancer will need details of the Certificate of Title, your mortgage account number (if applicable), the name of your lender, and the branch office and telephone number. They will require copies of planning consents for any work you’ve had done on the house and details of any warranties still in force. If the sale is linked to another purchase, he will need all the details listed above for buyers, plus the date by which you would like the transactions completed. Most of these items however can be obtained via property and local council searches. 

What we offer the seller

Under SA law, the owner must prepare a comprehensive Vendor’s Disclosure Statement for the Purchaser and serve it no less than 10 days before settlement. This statement is known as the Form 1. You will need a conveyancing professional to prepare this lengthy document where it is not provided by the selling agent. It involves performing and interpreting statutory searches and reporting the findings on your behalf. Independent Civil Conveyancing specialises in Forms 1 for sellers, always insuring their pre-sale legal obligations are satisfied.

The Form One Vendor’s Disclosure Statement is a legal document which must be prepared by the seller (assisted by a conveyancer). It is vital that everything known about the property is disclosed, even where issues are not included in the search results. The Form One must be certified by the vendor and served on the purchaser.

Tania Haines LLB

SA Registered Conveyancer, Independent Civil Conveyancing

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Talk to a conveyancing practitioner about your legal obligations before selling to avoid possible litigation in future.

What conveyancing for the seller involves


Conveyancing a property sale should involve the following:

  • Ensuring that a ‘good’ and clear title is available to the buyer and verifying ownership.
  • Checking whether land has been registered and the existence of any encumbrances, restrictive covenants or rights of way which will need to be either discharged or continued.
  • Checking that any minor developments have been certified by local council. Ensuring the vendor’s disclosure (Form One) statement is comprehensive to avoid future litigation.
  • Carrying out local authority and registry searches and preparing the Form 1 if necessary.
  • Ensuring that there are no debts against a property or that they’re cleared before completion.
  • Checking the lease and its clauses (if applicable).
  • Drawing up a contract of sale and preparing the Form One.
  • Arranging registration of the title in the new owner’s name after the sale of the property.
  • Settling any outstanding rates and taxes and notifying authorities of change of ownership.

Whew! That’s it!

There is a lot of work and expertise involved in conveyancing. The objective is to ensure unencumbered title is passed from seller to buyer. Let Independent Civil Conveyancing help you achieve a seamless settlement so you can get on with life!

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