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What Does A Conveyancer Do?

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If you have ever engaged in the buying and selling of property, you’ll no doubt have dealt with a conveyancer or solicitor. But what does a property conveyancer do exactly? Does it matter if you opt for a solicitor over a conveyancer? What is the difference?

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the differences between solicitors and conveyancers and discuss their roles in buying and selling.

What Is A Conveyancer?

A conveyancer is a licensed professional that specialises in property transactions. They provide information and advice about the sale of property and all things related to the transfer of ownership of land titles to a new owner.

What Does A Conveyancer Do For The Buyer?

What does a conveyancer do when buying a house? As a buyer, when engaging the help of a conveyancer you can expect them to:

  • Prepare, thoroughly inspect, clarify and lodge legal paperwork related to the sale. This includes documents such as the contract of sale.
  • Perform essential research into the properties certificate of title. These checks make you aware of any easements, the type of title the land is held under, any caveats or covenants and pinpoint any other important details about the property.
  • Handle the placement of your deposit into a secure trust account.
  • Review and calculate any taxes, rates or outstanding strata payments linked to the property and adjust them in accordance with the settlement date.
  • Negotiate the settlement on your behalf by liaising with your bank or nominated financial institution to ensure all final payments are made on time.
  • Deal with the vendor or agent on your behalf to ensure your best interests are being represented.

What Does A Conveyancer Do For The Seller

What does a conveyancer do when selling a house? The role of a conveyancer for a seller is much less involved than that of a buyer/conveyancer relationship. As a seller, you can expect a conveyancer to:

  • Prepare and finalise the contract of sale
  • Assisting with discharge of mortgage
  • Handle the placement of your deposit into a secure trust account.
  • Review and calculate rates or outstanding strata payments linked to the property and adjust them in accordance with the settlement date
  • Negotiate the settlement on your behalf by liaising with your bank or nominated financial institution to ensure all final payments are made on time
  • Deal with the vendor or agent on your behalf to ensure your best interests are being represented.
  • Act on your behalf for any dealings with the buyer, such as handling queries about the property title, repairs pre-settlement, an extension of settlement dates or similar.

What Does A Conveyancer Do When Buying Land?

Whether you are purchasing an existing dwelling or a vacant lot, the process of conveyancing is much the same. The main and most obvious difference is that there is no need for building inspections.

While it may be tempting to think that an empty lot is easier to process for your conveyancer, it is in fact quite involved. Your conveyancer will perform several checks regarding what the permitted use of the land is (residential/commercial), what you are allowed to build, where easements are situated, placement of the sewer, any building restrictions and more.

This care and dedication ensure you are buying a piece of land that is fit for your intended purpose, saving you time and heartache from discovering issues only once you have already taken ownership.

What Does A Licensed Conveyancer Do?

So what does a conveyancer do in Victoria? The answer is, a lot! As discussed above, they go into every detail of the sale, highlighting any concerns and ensuring these are resolved and understood before settlement occurs. They are truly invaluable, handling every legal aspect of your property purchase to ensure a smooth, trouble-free transaction.

Do I Have To Engage A Conveyancer?

While it is not a legal requirement for you to engage the help of a conveyancer or solicitor, it is highly recommended you do so. Doing your own conveyancing can be incredibly complex, and stressful and could see you miss important details.

If, as a buyer, you cause a delay to settlement due to incorrect documentation or missing information, you could be subject to harsh penalties. This may include having to pay a penalty interest rate as outlined in the contract of sale. If the seller decides to, they also have the right to cancel the contract and keep a buyer’s deposit.

If the seller defaults, they can be liable to repay the buyer’s deposit with interest. This is why it is so important that conveyancing, whether you are buying or selling, is handled by a licensed professional.

What Does A Conveyancer Cost?

Costs for conveyancing services can differ depending on the property in question and the complexities involved with the sale. For a single dwelling with no unexpected challenges, you can expect to pay anywhere from $800-$2500 or more.

Should you hire a Solicitor instead of a conveyancer, these costs can be higher.

Conveyancer Vs Solicitor – What Is The Difference?

What does a real estate conveyancer do? A conveyancer’s main education and focus are on property conveyancing, whereas a solicitor is formally trained as a lawyer and therefore may have a more in-depth understanding of property law. This means they are also licenced to practice as a lawyer in other fields outside of real estate conveyancing.

What does a conveyancing solicitor do? A conveyancing solicitor is sometimes sought out over a conveyancer when there are more complex sales at hand that contains more risk for the buyer. In these instances, there are usually issues that fall outside the scope of a standard conveyancing transaction and require additional expertise.

Ultimately, both a conveyancer and conveyancing solicitor can assist you with buying and selling your home. However, conveyancing is usually more cost-effective.

Are The Responsibilities Of Conveyancers The Same Across Australia?

When it comes to conveyancing laws and requirements between Australian States and Territories, they can differ quite significantly. So, if we ask what does a conveyancer do in Victoria, versus another in New South Wales, Western Australia, the ACT and so forth, the answer would be quite different.

While the same responsibilities apply regarding a conveyancer and their interactions with a buyer or seller of a property, how they process the sale will have some key differences.

This is why you should always engage the help of a local conveyancer that is across the laws and requirements of the state in which you are buying and/or selling. Additionally, licensing for most conveyancers is specific to the state in which they attained their qualifications, meaning they are not legally permitted to operate in other states and territories.

How We Can Help

At Complete Conveyancing Solutions we have over 20 years of experience supporting Victorians with their conveyancing needs. We pride ourselves on delivering one on one service that targets your best interest without ever compromising on our ethical standards.

We understand how stressful the buying and selling process can be and work to eliminate this for our clients through a guided, streamlined approach to conveyancing. No matter if you are buying your first home, investing, selling or delving into commercial property, we’re the team you can trust to handle it all.

With a dedication to transparency and professionalism, our clients are assured of genuine, supportive interactions that serve to enhance their buying or selling experience.

Contact boutique Complete Conveyancing Solutions today at (03) 5787 2250 to learn more about how we can help.

Maria Tomlinson holds an unrestricted conveyancing licence together with Professional Indemnity Insurance against civil liability. Maria Tomlinson commenced her career in Conveyancing in 2001. She furthered her studying by completing her Diploma in Conveyancing in 2017 which has led her to hold an unrestricted Conveyancing License and successfully open her conveyancing firm, Complete Conveyancing Solutions.

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