What is Conveyancing?

Conveyancing is the term for the legal and statutory processes required to effect the transfer of ownership of real estate from one person or entity to another.

The preparation, execution, verification and lodgement of numerous legal documents are important elements of conveyancing. Your conveyancer will clearly explain the meaning and importance of each document used in the conveyancing process. We encourage our members to use plain English, not complicated legal terms, to help you understand exactly what you are signing.

Drawing upon your instructions, your conveyancer will assist you to meet your legal obligations and protect your rights and interests.

What does a conveyancer do for you?

Whether buying or selling, you should be aware of anything affecting the property such as proposals by government departments, illegal building work, or outstanding rates and taxes. In order to obtain this information, your conveyancer will conduct the appropriate searches and inquiries on your behalf.

This is a list of some of the tasks a conveyancer will complete on your behalf. A conveyancer will:

  • Verify your Identity
  • Ask you to sign a client authorisation
  • Search the Certificate of Title
  • Search government departments and local authorities such as a local council
  • Provide advice on the effect of the contract for the sale of land
  • Prepare and certify legal documents
  • Stamp required documents
  • Calculate the adjustments of rates and taxes
  • Prepare settlement statements
  • Liaising with mortgagees and financiers
  • Attend at settlement whether in person or electronically
  • Store relevant documents

Some conveyancers also provide a range of services in relation to:

  • Buying & selling commercial & industrial property
  • Commercial and retail leases
  • Contracts for the sale or purchase of a business
  • Subdivisions and new titles

When should I consult a conveyancer?

You don’t need to wait until you are ready to sign a contract – it makes sense to select your conveyancer as soon as you decide to buy or sell a property. This is probably the biggest financial transaction you will make during your life so it is important to get it right!

You should never sign anything before you’ve asked for your conveyancer’s advice. Your conveyancer will ensure you understand your rights and obligations and are fully aware of all likely fees and charges.

Do I have to use the conveyancer the land agent suggests?

No, you don’t. Many real estate agents have local conveyancers to whom they refer work from properties they are selling. This is perfectly appropriate if based on the professionalism and expertise of the conveyancer and can be helpful if you don’t know of a conveyancer yourself.

The choice of a conveyancer is yours, not the agents.

To assist in choosing a conveyancer to use our Find a Conveyancer Tool.

Can I use the same conveyancer as the other party?

The AICSA does not generally recommend this practice. However, it is legal for both parties to use the same conveyancer, under certain conditions stated in the Land and Business (Sale and Conveyancing) Act 1994 and it can often appear convenient to do so.

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