What is conveyancing?

Conveyancing is the legal term for the process involved in transferring the ownership of a property and is usually undertaken by a licensed conveyancer or solicitor.

Conveyancers or solicitors help with the settlement of a property by ensuring that the client’s rights are protected while meeting all legal obligations when buying or selling a property.

Our popular articles on recommended conveyancers

ACT solicitor

Do you need a professional?

NSW solicitor

What will I pay for conveyancing fees?

SA conveyancer

Who should you contact?

VIC conveyancer

How do conveyancing fees compare?

WA Conveyancing

Are you looking for a good conveyancer in WA?

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What does a conveyancer do?

For a buyer

  • Prepares and lodges legal documents such as Contract of Sale.
  • Researches the property and ensures all necessary information is included in the documents.
  • Clarifies all the documents to the buyer.
  • Ensures that the bank receives all property details and the funds to pay the seller.
  • Books the settlement and attends it on your behalf.
  • Informs you once the property has been settled.

For a seller

  • Prepares legal documents like Contract of Sale and Vendor’s Statement.
  • Ensures the seller has met all disclosure obligations.
  • Co-ordinate the day of settlement with the buyer’s conveyancer.
  • Attend the settlement.
  • Direct the real estate agent to hand over the keys to the buyer after the settlement.

Do I need a conveyancer?

You can do your own conveyancing work. However, conveyancing work is highly technical and if you make an error and it causes a delay in the settlement process, you may have to pay a penalty, and in a worst case, the other party may even terminate the contract.

There are “Do It Yourself Conveyancing” packages offered by several companies, however, we recommend that you use the help of an expert if you aren’t familiar with the conveyancing process.

A conveyancer is a qualified professional who specialises in this single field of law so they are always up to date with all the changes to legislation and procedures that may affect the processing of your loan.

A conveyancer will act on your behalf for all the legal aspects required for the buying or selling of a property, to ensure that the process is completed on a timely basis without any delays.

What’s the difference between a licensed conveyancer and a solicitor?

Licensed conveyancers are registered at Australian Institute of Conveyancers (AIC) and they specialise in conveyancing work. However, this doesn’t apply to conveyancing in Queensland (QLD) and Australian Capital Territory (ACT) since AIC isn’t approved by the government in these states.

Solicitors, on the other hand are licensed lawyers who are able to handle any legal matters, including conveyancing.

Both licensed conveyancers and solicitors are protected by profession indemnity insurance, which means that you are insured in case they make an error in their work.

However, if you need legal advice outside the area of the property transaction then you’ll need a solicitor.

How much does conveyancing cost me?

Typically, most conveyancers charge about $800-$1,500 for their services. The fees may vary according to your state and the complexity of your situation.

Where can I find a good conveyancer?

Dealing with a good conveyancer is extremely important as it can determine what type of experience you will have whilst going through the loan process. If you have a good conveyancer then you have a much higher chance of flying through the mortgage process without facing any major dramas.

You can ask a conveyancer the following questions to find out whether they meet the standard of service you require:

  • Are you member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers? (Not applicable for ACT and QLD)
  • What’s the maximum I can expect to pay in fees and charges?
  • What are your fees and what services are included in those fees?
  • What will any additional services cost?
  • What government fees and charges will I need to pay?
  • How long will settlement take?
  • How will you keep me up to date with what’s happening?

There are several conveyancers and solictors that we recommend and this recommendation is based solely on their excellent ability to communicate with their customers, the broker and the bank to ensure that everything goes as planned. They are experts in this field of law and have given positive results every time, satisfying all parties involved.

Please contact the conveyancers directly if you would like to use their services. We are only recommending their services, we are not affiliated with them in any way.

  • Malenko

    I am planning on buying a house in Canberra. We won’t own the house itself it seems but we get a 99-year lease from the government. That’s okay but will the banks actually accept this?

  • Hello Malenko,
    Yes, banks accept properties in the ACT even if they are actually leasehold. Unlike leasehold properties elsewhere, there are no restrictions on the length of lease remaining. So a Canberra property is treated like any other freehold property for lending purposes. You can check out the ACT leasehold mortgage page if you’d like to learn more:

  • Carole B

    We are building a property in QLD and need some advice. Would you please provide some tips regarding choosing the right builder?

  • Hi Carole,

    We have been asked this many times by our clients and so we’ve assimilated a whole list of tips and additional information and put them down on our “Choosing a builder” page. Please check it out here:

  • h0pins

    Can you help with progress payments?

  • Yes, we’ll get involved with our customers construction loans if there’s a delay with the bank or if there’s a problem that you need our help to resolve. Apart for those situations, it’s best for you and your builder to deal directly with your lender’s construction department. Progress payments are routine procedures, so it’s likely that things will run smoothly. Please check out this page if you’d like to learn more:

  • Masa

    Hi, what does paying interest only mean? Sorry, I’m new to the finance and mortgage industry so have no clue but I’d like to learn because I would like to buy my first home by 2018.

  • Hello Masa.

    If you’re making interest only repayments then you’re not actually paying off your home loan. You’re just paying the monthly interest to the bank. The advantage is that your repayments are smaller. The disadvantage is that you won’t actually pay off your loan and ultimately you’ll pay much more in interest. Investors often use interest only loans on their investment properties to keep their monthly commitments low and to allow them to use their spare funds to pay off their non-tax deductible debts first.

    We have a first home buyers centre that you can check out to learn more and research before you actual get down to buying your first home. Here’s the link to that section:

  • Clarke

    I am a buying a plot of land in Bellevue Hill. I have applied for my home loan application to the bank and I’m waiting for an approval from them. By going through the time they have taken, I don’t think they’ll approve the loan anytime soon this week and this is when my cooling off period expires. I have spoken to my agent about extending it, however, he’s dilly-dallying. Is there any issue in extending the cooling off period to next week?

  • Hi Clarke,
    Agents may have reservations in extending the cooling off period as they want to complete the deal as soon as possible. However, the people actually selling the home, the vendors, are usually happy to extend the period in the event your loan application gets delayed. You just have to keep them well-informed of the status of your application and they may be able to extend it for you.