What Is Conveyancing?
“Conveyancing” is the legal process involved in transferring the title of a property from a seller to a buyer.
A conveyance comes into being by a Contract for Sale of Land. This is normally prepared by a legally qualified person, such as a conveyancer acting for a vendor (seller) and is checked by the purchaser’s (buyer’s) conveyancer.
Besides dealing with the actual contract and transfer, many ancillary functions are involved such as checking to see if the property is affected by;
- Government authority proposals
- Local council and state government compliance
- Condition of the property as regards building and pests
- Strata reports
- Easements and covenants
- Stamp duty
- Land tax, council and water rates
What you need to ask your conveyancer
Are you professionally insured?
- Are you a member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers?
- Who will personally be handling my file?
- How will you keep me up to date with what’s happening?
- What are all my costs involved?
- Do I get a written cost estimation?
To practice Best Conveyancing in New South Wales –
a conveyancer must –
- Promote, reform and improve the conveyancing profession.
- Represent the views of the profession and its members.
- Encourage and promote the study of conveyancing.
- Encourage honourable conduct and best practices throughout the profession.
Solicitors Vs Conveyancers
• Only specialize in ‘real property’ related law known as conveyancing.
• Must have completed a minimum 2 years study at tertiary level on ‘real property’ law.
• Must have at least 2 years supervised practical experience in conveyancing before they can apply for a conveyancing license. Conveyancing licenses are issued and administered by the NSW Office of Fair Trading.
• In NSW a Licensed Conveyancer is just as qualified as a Solicitor to undertake the legal work involved in a conveyancing transaction.
• The majority of Licensed Conveyancers are self-employed and run their own business. This means that you are likely to be dealing with the Principal of the conveyancing business. A Licensed Conveyancer can also work in a legal office.
• Often based in the Suburbs and there is likely to be a Licensed Conveyancer in your local area. Some Licensed Conveyancers offer flexible appointment times or a mobile service.
• The cost of services offered by a Licensed Conveyancer are generally ‘fixed fee’ and considered cheaper than that offered by a Solicitor.
• If a transaction becomes litigious or is beyond the scope of what is considered conveyancing work under the Conveyancers Licensing Act 2003 then a Licensed Conveyancer must refer the transaction to a Solicitor for assistance.
• Solicitors can practice in many areas of law including conveyancing and can be involved in transactions which require their attendance at Court.
• A Solicitor undertakes 6 months study in relation to ‘real property’ law during their law degree and ‘conveyancing’ is an optional elective. No practical training in conveyancing is required once a Solicitor is admitted to practice law.
• Solicitors often call themselves Conveyancers.
• Solicitors often have the assistance of a law clerk, secretary or Licensed Conveyancer to complete the conveyancing transaction on their behalf.
• Can often to be located in the City CBD or other major business districts rather than suburbs and don’t tend to offer flexible appointment times or a mobile service.
• A Solicitor may charge you by the hour rather than a fixed professional fee.
• If the transaction becomes litigious then a Solicitor may have the expertise to handle the conveyancing transaction without the need to refer it to other legal practitioner.
More people are now using the services of a Licensed Conveyancer than a Solicitor as they tend to be more price competitive and easily contactable.Read More