Are you buying or selling? The basics of conveyancing

If you’re a first home buyer or even if you’ve bought and sold properties before, you’ve probably heard of ‘conveyancing’ but have never fully understood what it entails.

Conveyancing is the term used for the legal and statutory processes required to effect the transfer of ownership of land, and any improvements on that land, from one owner to another.

In NSW and the ACT, the conveyancing process typically consists of three stages: exchange of contracts, completion or settlement, and post completion or settlement.

Who can do Conveyancing?

Once you have decided to move forward with a real estate transaction, you will become involved in the process of conveyancing. You then have a choice to make as to who will assist you with the process.

You can either:

  • Engage a solicitor/law firm
  • Engage a licenced conveyancer (in NSW) or
  • Do it yourself.

In addition to assisting with the conveyancing process, solicitors can provide you with further legal advice about other matters and are better suited to help you should there be any legal problems past the straight forward conveyancing process. A solicitor has both the knowledge and skill to complete the purchase or sale of your home and relieve you of most of the stresses and responsibilities that come with conveyancing.

What should you do?

Before you decide to do your own conveyancing, you will need to research what is required and the risks involved. You may be held personally liable for any losses suffered as a result of any error that you make. Make sure that you fully understand the conveyancing process and relevant legislation as complications can arise from a number of unforeseen reasons.

Solicitors must have professional indemnity insurance. Engaging a professional to undertake your conveyancing has the extra benefit of security: if your solicitor or licenced conveyancer makes an error that ends up costing you money, you may be able to claim damages from the solicitor/licenced conveyancer or their insurer.

By engaging a law firm that specialises in Property Law, you can be assured that they will have the extensive knowledge required for all conveyancing matters.

For more information contact Meyer Vandenberg’s Residential Property Team:

Kim Cosgrove — Residential Conveyancing Manager — Residential Property Team
(02) 6279 4305

Archie Tsirimokos — Partner — Residential Property Team
(02) 6279 4304