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THE PROPERTY REGISTRATION PROCESS

Although purchasing a property is an exciting time, it is often a prolonged process that is not fully understood by the people buying or selling the property.

Being aware of the overall property buying and registration process will help relieve a lot of unnecessary stress. It is always best to understand each stage of the process and how it relates to another.

Below is a summary of the registration process that will equip you with a working knowledge and understanding of what goes on behind the scenes when buying or selling a property.

STEP 1: APPOINTMENT OF THE CONVEYANCER

The conveyancer, who is usually appointed by the seller, will ensure that all the documents needed for registering the property transfer are in order. The most important documents include the Title Deed and cancellation figures from the Bank, as well as a rates clearance certificate which serves as proof of payment for rates and taxes from the relevant municipality. Once these documents are ready, the municipality will provide the conveyancer with a rates clearance certificate and SARS will issue a transfer duty receipt after receiving payment.

STEP 2: BOND APPROVAL

After the purchaser applies for a bond successfully, the financial institution will send an electronic instruction to its Bond Attorneys to attend to the registration of the bond.

STEP 3: DRAFTING OF THE DEED OF SALE AND SIGNATURE OF TRANSFER DOCUMENTS

The Seller’s conveyancer will attend to the drafting of the deed of sale and transfer, which will in turn be lodged with the Deeds Office. The conveyancer will also request and arrange for the purchaser and the seller to sign the transfer documents. The purchaser normally bears the cost of the transfer and will be liable to pay the rates, taxes, transfer duty as well as the conveyancer’s fees for attending to the transfer.

STEP 4: LODGMENT AT THE DEEDS OFFICE

Once all the documents have been signed and all the costs have been paid, it will be lodged at the Deeds Office by the conveyancer. Deeds are registered from 10h00 every morning at the Deeds Office. Deeds lodged at the Deeds Office will be allocated a barcode for tracking purposes. This will enable the conveyancer to follow up and enquire about the status and progress of the registration process.

The Deeds Office will verify the submitted documents by examining the deed to ensure compliance with the conditions of transfer, checking the legality of the transfer and confirming that proper standards of examination were applied. This process takes 7-10 days to be completed whereafter the transfer will come up for registration.

Once the deed of sale is deemed to be in order by the Registrar of the Deeds Office, the conveyancer has a period of 5 days to register the purchaser’s bond and transfer. The period in which to transfer the property on to the purchaser’s name will be arranged by the conveyancer and the bank’s Bond Attorneys within the 5-day period.

The final step of bond registration and transfer will take place on the same day.

STEP 6: REGISTRATION

In conclusion, the Bond Attorney arranges with the Bank to have the bond proceeds paid. After that, ownership passes from seller to purchaser. The purchaser’s new bond is registered and the seller’s existing bond is cancelled. On the day of registration, you officially become the owner of the property.

Prepared by:

Raymond Scott | Consultant | Real Estate

Dominique Dirks | Candidate Attorney

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)