Delays that could arise in the property transfer process | Legal Articles


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Delays that could arise in the property transfer process

Many people wishing to sell or purchase a property may be ignorant of the various steps that are involved in a property transaction.

Property Transfer Process

There are many complications that could come about during the process because there are so many different parties that are involved. Also, the issues that could arise can create further delays.

It is not uncommon for a person to enter into a property transaction without having professional advice and this then results in said person running into serious difficulties and problems.

Transfer costs

The usual things that a buyer or seller could encounter depend on the circumstances involved. But the most common scenarios usually arise from them not being aware of all the costs involved. For example, the purchaser may not realise that he has to pay transfer duty when requested to do so by the conveyancer.

If they are late with this payment then serious delays and problems could result. (Maybe the late payment of the transfer duty is because the purchaser is waiting for the sale of his or her current home to go through.)

However, this should not normally be allowed in terms of the contract.

Bond Registration Costs

Another issue that could arise is when the purchaser is not aware of or does not accept the fact that they are responsible for paying both the transfer and bond registration costs.
This could result in the conveyancer refusing to register the transaction until the required payment has been made.

Compliance Certificates - Electrical

Many individuals may forget to acquire the necessary certificates which should be done before the signing of the sale agreement. If these are not obtained, then the sale will not be processed.
It is the seller’s responsibility to acquire these. But perhaps the seller could have them but the certificates are out of date. They don’t understand why these out of date certificates can’t be used and so delays arise.
Obtaining these is the seller’s duty and it is usually the electrical certificate that is most problematic.
What happens all too often is that the seller will have a prior electrical certificate, but as these are valid for only two years (provided no further electrical work is done) it may be out of date.
Many sellers do not understand this and often incorrectly insist that the out of date certificate is used, which often causes delays.”
When a new electrical inspection is finally agreed to the seller may point out that many of the repairs which the electrician deems essential for issuing a certificate have been dealt with at some previous stage.

Payment of Municipal Rates

Being ignorant of the rates legislation could be another reason as to why delays arise.
As registration of the property can only take place once the seller has paid all the arrear rates and the advance payments have been made for rates and services, a delay in payment could result in the process being further halted. 
Sellers and purchasers may not understand this process could take up to 4 months to be completed and so the conveyancer has to deal with all the queries that both parties will bring up as a result.

Dates of Occupation and Transfer

Further issues could arise when both parties become confused with the date of transfer and date of occupation. It is common for the seller to agree to allow the purchaser take up occupation before the date of transfer.
In the interim of the buyer occupying the property, he could find several faults with the property which he may not have noticed at first. The purchaser could then cause illegal delays in order to get the seller to make amends to the newly discovered issues.
Generally, the voetstoots clause is applied in most sales transactions, however, the benefits could be forfeited if the buyer can prove that the seller intentionally kept hidden any faults and problems within the property.
It is thus, advisable to keep the date of transfer and date of occupation the same so as to ensure that such issues do not arise.

Van Deventer & Van Deventer Incorporated - Property Transfer Attorneys

It is necessary for agents to become familiar with all the legal aspects that are involved in a property transaction.
This could serve to help them advise their clients on the best manner of dealing with any potential issues and in turn help prevent delays in the transfer process. 

Contact us for professional legal advice and for assistance with your property transfers

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