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Understanding Conveyancing in South Africa: A Complete Guide

What is Conveyancing?

Conveyancing in South Africa refers to the legal process of transferring the ownership of immovable property from one person to another. This process is typically overseen by a conveyancer, a specialised attorney who has the legal authority to execute deeds and documents at the Deeds Office.

The Role of a Conveyancer

The conveyancer's main role is to ensure that the interests of both the buyer and the seller are protected throughout the transaction. They perform several key duties including conducting property searches, verifying the title, preparing and lodging legal documents, and ensuring that the financial aspects of the transaction are handled correctly.

Step-by-Step Process of Conveyancing

  1. Sale Agreement:  The conveyancing process begins when the buyer and seller enter into a sale agreement. This document should include all pertinent details such as the purchase price and conditions of sale.

  2. Title Deed and Clearance Certificates: The conveyancer checks the title deed of the property and obtains various clearance certificates required by law. These include rates and taxes clearances and homeowners' association compliance certificates, among others.

  3. Transfer Duty: The buyer is usually responsible for paying transfer duty, a tax levied on property transactions. The conveyancer helps to calculate and submit the payment to the South African Revenue Service (SARS).

  4. Lodging and Registration: Once all documents are prepared and duties paid, the conveyancer lodges the documents at the Deeds Office. The Deeds Office then checks and registers the transfer. This is the final step in the conveyancing process.

  5. Completion: Upon successful registration, the conveyancer ensures that the seller receives their funds and the buyer obtains the property's title deed, officially making them the new owner.

Common Challenges in Conveyancing

The conveyancing process can face delays and challenges, such as disputes over property boundaries or discrepancies in the title deed. An experienced conveyancer can help navigate these issues smoothly, preventing potential legal conflicts.

Choosing the Right Conveyancer

Choosing the right conveyancer is crucial. Look for a professional with extensive experience and a good track record in handling property transfers. Ensure they are registered with the Legal Practice Council of South Africa and have a good standing in the legal community.


Understanding conveyancing is essential for anyone involved in buying or selling property in South Africa. With the right conveyancer by your side, you can ensure a smooth, efficient process that adheres to all legal requirements.

Leoni Naude Inc Attorneys
Leoni Naude Inc


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