Buying your first home is one of the benchmarks in every person’s life. Whether it’s a small apartment to rest in after a day’s work, a home to raise a family in, or a studio apartment that allows you to tap into your creativity, your first home is a landmark from which the rest of your life flows.

However, not understanding the costs related to the transfer process may leave you with a less-than-perfect experience. A cost that first-time buyers often overlook is the conveyancer fee. So, let’s look at what conveyancer fees are and why conveyancers play such a vital role.

Conveyancing fees

In every real estate transaction, there is a third party that many first-time buyers may not be aware of: the conveyancer. The conveyancer is the attorney responsible for transferring the legal ownership of the property (the title deed) from one person to another. Due to the extensive administration involved in the process and the number of services that entail the transfer process, conveyancing costs are a vital consideration in every property purchase.

Transfer costs are calculated on the property’s purchase price or the capital amount of the bond and form the largest part of the conveyancing fee. These costs are rather easy to calculate as they are regulated by the Law Society of South Africa guidelines. However, this is one part of the total conveyancing fee.

On top of the transfer costs, the conveyancing attorney will add a fee that covers the services they provided, including the request of cancellation figures, preparing necessary documentation, applying for rates clearance certificates, and conducting deeds office searches. The conveyancing attorney is also responsible for preparing the transfer duty declaration. These services are mandatory for the transfer of ownership and can only be done by a qualified attorney.

While the seller conventionally appoints the conveyancing attorney, it is the buyer who is responsible for paying the conveyancing fee. Buyers need to keep this in mind before signing the Offer to Purchase, as the fees will be difficult to negotiate.

A vital role

Now, the transfer process is time-consuming, but with CMM Attorneys’ expert handling of the conveyancing process, we ensure that the process is not unnecessarily prolonged, helping you get the keys to your dream home as soon as possible.

The conveyancing attorney plays one of the most important roles in purchasing a property, being the party responsible for making it your home, at least legally speaking.

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)