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Stats and tips on property transfers in KZN

04 Dec 2015

Unlike in Cape Town, unnecessary delays have in general not been experienced at the Deeds Office in Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal.

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This is according to Elaine Becker, Conveyancing Liaison for Seeff Dolphin Coast, who says they have come to this conclusion after analysing the statistics on the last 100 sales to be registered in their office.

“However, there were isolated cases where documents submitted were incorrect or not completed, obviously delaying the process, but these were normally rectified and the documents re-lodged,” she says.

“Informing a client of the process and the time it could take is very important.”

One of the factors that can impact on transfer is the Levy Clearance Certificate that is required when buying a property in a complex or estate, says Becker.

This certificate is a letter of confirmation issued by a managing agent of a homeowner’s association or a sectional title body corporate to provide proof to the transferring attorney that the levies due by the current registered owner are up to date.

“Clearance certificates are crucial for transfer, and we always try and ensure that these are issued on time. Clearance certificates have to be included in the pack before transfer reaches a certain stage in the Deeds Office,” she says.

“If these certificates are not available when that point in the process is reached, the Deeds Office may hold over transfer for five days. If the documents have still not reached the officer by then, the transfer will be rejected and the process will need to be started again.”

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Becker says to always ensure your timeline is on track: you have 30 days from the issuing of the clearance certificate to transfer.

What is currently the average time it takes for registration of transfer, and how does this compare to the days before 2007/8?

“Our average time for transfer at this point is 89 days, so essentially 3 months. Our quickest turnaround time from point of receiving the Agreement of Sale to transfer of the property was 24 calendar days,” says Becker.

“In comparison to pre-2007, a lot more regulations have come into play, and with ever-growing expansion, especially on the North Coast, it is necessary to ensure that transfers meet the regulatory specifications of your area.”

She says that while transfers may have become more complex over the years, the bond approval process has simplified.

“Five years ago the process was a lot more extensive than our current situation. With quite a few clients who have private bankers, and the online directive growing at such a fast pace, it was essential for the banks to up their game in terms of bond turnaround times,” says Becker.

“We recently received bond approval within 24 hours of submitting documents to the banks. The bond originator must work hand-in-hand with the banks to deliver a quick and effortless service to clients.”

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