When you’re buying or selling a home, having to choose a conveyancer can be bewildering if you don’t know what to look for.
As the largest conveyancing firm in South Australia, we think we do things right so we’d like to share the key factors we believe you should look for in your conveyancer, no matter where you live.
This article is based on my insights into the various challenges people face in understanding what conveyancers do, how to appreciate the value of a good conveyancer and some thoughts on when to engage your conveyancer.
To choose a conveyancer right for you, it’s important to know what they do
The biggest financial transaction most people make in their lives is when they buy a home.
Therefore, it makes sense to choose a professional advisor to work with you to make sure you are going into this transaction with your eyes open.
I have a background article that gives you the overview of what conveyancers do, and it has proved to be quite popular.
Real Estate Exposed: What your conveyancer does for you at settlement
Some of the items I highlight in that article include things likely to be foreign to people who are new to buying real estate, such as:
- Check the cooling off provisions and property details in your Form 1 to ensure all is in order
- Confirm that any existing mortgages will be discharged
- Check any caveats on the property and make sure they are withdrawn or advise you if you need one to protect your interests
- Advise you on your new and immediate insurance responsibilities
That is just a sample of the many nooks and crannies your conveyancer will look into to make sure you have no expensive surprises when you finalise buying your new home.
The hidden costs when you choose a conveyancer who is not up to speed
One of the challenges facing conveyancers is how to help new home buyers understand the VALUE and IMPORTANCE of conveyancing.
As the saying goes, when we don’t know what we don’t know it is hard to value it.
In my article, Cheap conveyancer Adelaide? New data shows stakes too high to make that Google search, I highlight a few areas where so-called ‘cheap’ conveyancers can end up costing clients a fortune.
These areas included:
- Changes in contract terminology regulations. It must be nigh impossible for cheap conveyancers or one-person operations to stay abreast of changes while balancing the demands of client work.
- The imminent onslaught of digital conveyancing or e-conveyancing. Eckermann Conveyancers has been prudently investing in upgrading systems and staff training so we can pass on cost savings and speed benefits as our lawmakers let us; the flipside is to risk errors and omissions due to older, more manual methods of conveyancing.
- Costly confusion over swimming pool certification. If your property has a pool, there is a lot of deep water to wade through relating to certification, and you need the best conveyancer keeping watch to make sure you don’t get swamped by unexpected fines and penalties or delays in settlement.
As you can see, some of the ways to value our work rests in understanding the unexpected or avoidable costs we protect you from.
When should I choose a conveyancer?
While most first time home buyers leave choosing a conveyancer to the last minute, I believe there are benefits from getting to know your conveyancer ahead of making your offer to buy.
At a bare minimum, real estate agents will typically ask you for your conveyancer’s name and contact details so will be helpful and efficient if you’ve made your decision early.
However, we have found that working with clients before they sign contracts or make offers on a property, can help them avoid costly mistakes.
At Eckermann Conveyancers we offer the service of checking contracts and then deduct it from your conveyancing fees if you decide to use us to handle your settlement process.
I hope this has helped give you some context for choosing a conveyancer and the importance of choosing a value for money conveyancer and not necessarily a cheap conveyancer. A cheap conveyancer is not always good value as explained above.
For more information about our services as well as many other helpful details, I encourage you to dowload our Conveyancing Information Pack for future reference.