Conveyancing Procedures For The Transer Of Property

The procedures to be effected in a typical transfer of Residential Property from the conclusion of the Sale Agreement to registration of transfer in the Deed of Registry and payment of the proceeds are set out hereunder.

1. INSTRUCTIONS

The transferring Attorney receives instruction from Property Consultants, who forwards to him the Agreement of Sale. The instruction is to effect registration of Transfer from Seller to Purchaser in terms of the Agreement of Sale. Most Agreements of Sale contain suspensive conditions, two of the most common being:

  1. The granting of bond finances to the Purchaser by a Financial Institution
  2. The Sale of the Purchaser's property out of the proceeds of which the balance of the purchase price of the property purchased will be paid.

2. DOCUMENTS AND INFORMATION MUST BE OBTAINED

On receipt of instructions, the Conveyancer must obtain the following documentation and information:

  1. The actual Title Deed must be obtained. This document is usually in possession of the Bank holding the excisting bond over the property. We fax the bondholder calling for the Title Deed and for a statement of the amount required by the bank to enable it to cancel its bond over the property.
  2. Details of the Seller's and Purchaser's full names, identity number, marital status, and in certain circumstances the same details of the spouses of both parties. Copies of identity documents, antenuptial contracts, marriage certificate and divorce orders are required.

3. THE PRELIMINARY TRANSFER DOCUMENTS MUST BE DRAWN UP

Upon receipt of the Title Deed and documents as in 2.2 above, we draw the preliminary transfer documents, namely:

  1. Power of Attorney to transfer the property, to be signed by the Seller authorising transfer to the purchaser.
  2. Transfer Duty Declaration, for signature by the Purchaser and Seller, for the purpose of payment of Transfer duty.
  3. Status Affidavits for signature by both Purchaser and Seller.
  4. Rates Clearance Applications to the Municipality for a rates clearance certificate.
  5. An estimate of our charges, and the balance of the purchase price, to be paid by the purchaser.

4. SIGNATURE OF DOCUMENTS, AND PAYMENT OF ESTIMATED CHARGES

We then call upon both parties to call at our offices to sign the relevant documents. We call upon the Purchaser to pay our costs, to enable us to pay the Receiver of Revenue, the Transfer Duty payable, and to the Municipality, the amount payable on account of rates and taxes.

5. THE RATES CLEARANCE CERTIFICATE IS OBTAINED

This procedure involves a written application to the Local Authority i.e. Municipality, accompanies by the amount due in respect of rates up to 30 June.

6. A TRANSFER DUTY RECEIPT or EXEMPTION CERTIFICATE IS OBTAINED

The transfer duty declarations signed by the Purchaser and Seller, together with a cheque for the transfer duty is paid to the local office of the Receiver of Revenue and the receipt must be obtained.

7. ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE CANCELLATION OF THE EXISTING BOND

If the property is subject to an existing bond, the property may not be transferred until such bond is cancelled. Cancellation will not be permitted until the Bank holding the bond has been paid, or a guarantee has been provided for the payment thereof. We arrange for the issue of guarantees, normally out of the proceeds of the new bond obtained by the Purchaser for the amount due to the Bondholder. This process is frequently a time-consuming one, and cannot be effected until such time as the purchaser has signed his bond documents.

8. SIMULTANEOUS LODGEMENT MUST BE ARRANGED

A typical house sale involves three acts of registration in the Deed Registry, namely:

  1. The registration of transfer from Seller to Purchaser.
  2. The cancellation of the existing bond.
  3. The registration of the new bond by the Purchaser.

These three transactions have to be simultaneously registered in the Deed Registry. They are frequently attended to by three separate Conveyancers, and none of the Conveyancers may proceed registration of his transaction without the others. Thus, if one is ready to lodge, he may be delayed by the unreadiness of the others. The Transferring Attorney co-ordinates all three transactions, liaising with the other Conveyancers involved.

9. LODGEMENT AND REGISTRATION IN THE DEEDS REGISTRY

Each Conveyancer has his Cape Town correspondent who lodges the documentation in his transaction. All of the transactions referred to in 8 above must be simultaneously lodged in the Deeds Registry. The Cape Town Correspondents liaise with each other co-ordinating simultaneous lodgement of all of the transactions. After lodgement, the documents are examined by the Deeds Office staff. If the documents are in order and comply with the Deeds Registry requirements, transfer is registered. The period between lodgement and registration may vary according to the volume of work in the Deeds Office, but presently takes approximately 10 working days.

10. PROCEDURES ON REGISTRATION

Immediately registration takes place, we must issue confirmation of registration to the Bank that has issued guarantees. Thereafter on presentation of the guarantee to the Bank, payment is made to the existing Bondholder and to us. This payment is only made after 15:00 on the day of registration. We thereafter prepare the final accounts for both Purchaser and Seller, making an adjustment between the Seller and Purchaser in respect of their pro rata share of rates and present a final account to Purchaser and Seller, including a cheque for the payment of the proceeds to the Seller. In that account, we deal with the issues of payment of the Agents Commission, payment of the costs of obtaining Borer beetle free and wiring certificates, where necessary. These final accounts and payments are usually available the morning after registration.

11. RELEASE OF DOCUMENTS FROM THE DEEDS REGISTRY

Once the transfer has been registered, the recording and writing up of the transaction has to be completed in the office of the Registrar of Deeds. This process takes about three weeks, so it is not until about one month after the date of registration that the new Title Deed is actually released by the Deeds office. The Title Deed can then be forwarded to the registered owner, or where the property is bonded, the Title Deed will be sent to the bondholder.

APPROXIMATE TIME PERIOD OF PROCEDURES

1 – 2 days

Receive instructions. Fax to Bondholder, re Title Deed and cancellation figures. Call parties for their particulars.

3 – 15 days

Receive Title Deed, draft documents. Attend to signature thereof. Call for guarantees.

16 – 30 days Receive payment of costs and deposit if applicable. Pay Transfer duty and rates and taxes.
31 – 45 days Receive guarantees, send one to bondholder. Receive Transfer duty receipt and rates clearance certificate. Send documents to Cape Town.
46 – 60 days Documents lodged and registration effected plus minus 10 days later.
61 – 75 days Guarantees presented and payments made.
76 – 100 days New Title Deed received and sent to Bondholder or owner if no bond. Please take notice that the time periods can be reduced, provided all parties co-operate.

On registration the attorney will provide the new owner with a letter to take to the municipality to open an account re municipal charges.  The procedure for this is subject to change but the latest information from customer care at NMMM is the following:

NMMM will only open a new account after registration once the purchaser presents a letter to them from the transferring attorney advising of registration. Once presented with this letter they will then take a reading and open the new account based on this reading.  They may take up to five days to take the new reading and they will hold the seller liable for these charges until the new reading is taken.  The seller and purchaser are responsible for taking readings on registration for this interim period and settling same amongst themselves.  They will require a deposit from the purchaser to open the new account.  Once the new account is opened the seller’s account will automatically be closed unless there is an amount owed to or from the NMMM. If there is an amount owed from the NMMM to the seller then the seller will have to attend their offices with ID and bank statements to arrange a refund from the NMMM.  There are two offices, one situated in Walmer (on Heugh Road across the road from the 6th Avenue Shopping Centre) and one in Govan Mbeki.  We suggest you attend the Walmer branch.

Posbus 13534
Humewood
6013

Port Elizabeth

Tel: +27 (0)41 583 5453
Fax: +27 (0)41 583 3456
Email: mariette@summerstrand.co.za

Copyright © Mariette Rossouw

Property For Sale: Eastern Cape
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