Frequently asked questions
Please take a moment to browse our frequently asked questions to learn more about conveyancing and Settle Easy. If you don’t find an answer to your question, please get in touch with our friendly and professional team and we will happily answer your question for you.
What is conveyancing?
Conveyancing is the process of moving the legal ownership of property or land from one person or entity to another.
What is a conveyancer?
A conveyancer is a property transfer specialist. They prepare the legal documents that form part of real estate transactions such as the purchase and sale of properties, settlements and title transfers.
When do I need a conveyancer?
Once you have decided to buy or sell real estate and BEFORE you sign anything, you need a conveyancer.
They will explain everything you need to know.
How much does it cost?
Whether you are buying or selling, your conveyancing transaction will cost $880 (including GST) plus disbursements until 30 June 2022.
That’s 20% off our regular professional services fee.
Disbursements are out of pocket expenses that relate specifically to your property and are things we need to know in order to complete your conveyancing transaction.
What types of conveyancing can Settle Easy do?
Our experienced team specialise in property transfers of:
- residential properties
- large scale off the plan property developments
- retirement village residences
- commercial properties
- properties within trust structures
- properties for self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs).
What locations do you service?
We offer conveyancing services throughout Victoria and will soon expand into other Australian states and territories.
Where are you located?
Settle Easy is an online conveyancing service, but we share offices with national law firm, Mills Oakley, in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD.
What sort of experience does your conveyancing team have?
Our Chief Practice Manager, Mirella Rice, leads a team of expert conveyancers that have many years of experience specialising in all areas of property transactions.
We’ll do everything we can to make your conveyancing as easy as possible.
How will I know what’s happening?
At Settle Easy, we are committed to keeping you updated.
As a registered customer, you will be able to track each stage of your transaction.
We’ll also let you know what we need from you to avoid delays.
When do I pay?
You’ll pay our fees at settlement.
Can you tell me a bit more about out of pocket expenses?
These costs are fees we might have to pay third parties to complete your conveyancing transaction. Among other things, we might need:
- title searches
- meter readings
- council land and building certificates
- planning and heritage searches
- water meter readings and encumbrance certificates
- road authority certificates
- Environment Protection Authority (EPA) certificates
- owner’s corporation certificate.
What are third party expenses?
- stamp duty
- Land Victoria registration fees
- Verification of Identity (VOI) fees
- optional extras such as title insurance and caveat registration fees.
What are Land Victoria registration fees?
These are fees charged by the Land Titles Office on documents such as the Transfer of Land, Mortgage of Land and Discharge of Mortgage. There are no reductions, concessions or exemptions available on registration fees.
What is stamp duty and how is it calculated?
In Victoria, stamp duty, now known as land transfer duty— is payable when you acquire property—even if you receive that property as a gift.
This duty is calculated on either the purchase price or market value of the property, whichever is highest.
What is a caveat?
In conveyancing, this is a legal record noting someone’s interest in the property. This restricts dealings with the title until the caveat is resolved by the party with the registered interest.
What is a Contract of Sale?
This is a legally binding agreement between two parties outlining the terms of purchase or sale of real estate.
Who signs the Contract of Sale first?
The purchaser usually signs the contract first. The purchaser submits their offer to the seller, which includes price and any additional conditions. From the moment a buyer signs the contract, it becomes a legal and binding document.
What’s included in the Contract of Sale?
If you have already inspected the property, don’t assume that everything you have seen is included with the property after settlement. Common items that may not be included in the contract might be furniture, appliances and fixtures, but don’t worry, your conveyancer will check all of this for you.
What is a Section 32 Statement?
This is also called a vendor’s statement and it is prepared by your conveyancer.
This document discloses to the buyer information relevant to the property being sold. This must include information on restrictions of use of land, such as covenants and easements and outgoings such as rates and any other notices known by the seller. This document must be shared with any prospective buyer before signing a contract.
Can a Section 32 Vendor’s Statement expire?
Section 32 Vendor’s Statements are valid as long as the information included in them is up to date. Some certificates attached to the vendor statement may have an expiry period and may need to be updated.
What are chattels, fittings and fixtures?
To avoid disappointment and disputes, it’s important to know the difference between chattels, fittings and fixtures.
Chattels are usually goods that are not fixed to the land or property by anything other than their own weight. These might be things like furniture and small appliances that belong to a current property owner.
Furniture that is built into a property wouldn’t be considered a chattel.
Fittings and fixtures, on the other hand, refer to items that are generally attached to the land or property where damage would be caused to the property if they are removed. The most obvious example of this would be a built-in wardrobe.
Why should I keep paying home insurance if I am selling my property?
If you are selling property, we recommend you maintain home insurance right up until the time of settlement.
Things can (and sometimes do) go wrong between signing the contract and final settlement. A current home insurance policy can protect you against all sorts of accidental damage and legal liability.
What are adjustments?
Adjustments show the calculations on how the property outgoings such as rates, fees and levies are adjusted between the seller and the buyer. Buyers usually reimburse the seller for the outgoings payable from the day of settlement. Usually, if there is a balance owing on the outgoings, it is deducted from the seller’s settlement monies.
What is a settlement?
If buying or selling property was a marathon, think of the settlement as the finish line. Settlement is the part where legal possession of land orproperty is transferred from one owner to another.
How long does settlement take?
Generally, settlements take either 30 or 60 days according to the terms set out in the Contract of Sale. If all parties agree, longer or shorter settlement terms can be arranged.
How long does it take to receive funds from the settlement of a sale?
Most settlements are now conducted electronically, so funds are made available the next business day.
Who attends settlement?
All Settle Easy conveyancing transactions are settled electronically in an online environment.
Your conveyancer will liaise with all parties involved and advise you when settlement is complete.
What is an electronic Certificate of Title?
An electronic Certificate of Title or eCT is a person’s record of ownership of land/property. By law, an eCT must be controlled by your legal representative/conveyancer or by your lender, who will control it until you have repaid your loan.
When will I get access to my property?
We will let you know as soon as your settlement has been successful so you may collect the keys and start moving in.
If you have sold property, we’ll also let you know when settlement is complete and the purchaser will collect all keys to the property.
What is a utility provider and who is responsible for notifying them about a change of property ownership?
A utility provider is an organisation that supplies electricity, gas, telephone and water usage.
It is the responsibility of buyers and sellers to notify all other utility providers of a change in property ownership.
Settle Easy will let the authorities responsible for water rates, council rates, land tax and Owners Corporation fees (previously known as body corporate fees) know that a property has changed hands once settlement is complete.
How will Settle Easy protect my privacy?