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You’ve scoured the web for what feels like weeks, and you’ve finally found your dream home! You’ve put in your offer, and it’s been accepted. But before you can pack your boxes and move into your dream home, there are certain requirements needed when buying a home in South Africa.
Property sales are usually handled by estate agents. They will assist in preparing the necessary documents and put the transfer and registration process into motion. In some cases, owners will buy and sell property privately, as this is legal in South Africa.
Once you want to purchase a property, the following will happen:
- A document titled, “Offer to Purchase” will be signed by the purchaser as soon as the purchaser and seller have come to a mutual decision.
- The purchaser signs the Offer to Purchase, after which it is submitted to the seller.
- The signed Offer to Purchase becomes the new Deed of Sale. In the Deed of Sale, there may be certain suspensive conditions such as raising a mortgage bond, and once these conditions have been met, the contract between the purchaser and the seller will be binding.
- The Deed of Sale is then sent to a conveyancer, who will take care of all the financial arrangements and ensure that all finances are in place and secure.
- Before the transaction can be submitted to the Deeds Office, the conveyancer will prepare all the documents. Once these documents have been submitted, the transfer process will begin.
- A Municipal Clearance Certificate for rates and taxes is then requested by the conveyancer from the municipality.
- The purchaser is required to pay the transfer duty and registration costs before the documents will be submitted to the Deeds Office, while the seller will have to provide a Tax Clearance Certificate acquired from SARS.
- At the time agreed upon in the Offer to Purchase, a cash deposit for the balance of the purchase price will have to be made into the conveyancer’s trust account.
- If the property has a mortgage bond, a bond attorney will have to cancel the bond registration.
- The transfer process can take two to three months to be finalised and the purchaser will be kept up to date on the progress of the transfer by either the agent or the conveyancer.
Once the property is registered in the purchaser’s name, the property officially has a new owner, and you can start moving into your newly-bought dream home!
This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)