Property registration and transfer costs: who’s responsible for what?

A property transfer comes along with significant expenses, but being well informed about what registration and transfer costs you can expect to incur means that you can plan carefully and avoid any unpleasant and costly surprises.

The process to approval for extending a Sectional Title Unit

The buyer and seller involved in a property transfer is each responsible for certain costs related to the process and it’s important for each party to have a clear understanding of what they are liable for from the outset. To make this simple, we’ve outlined the common costs related to a property transfer and identified who is responsible for each.

What costs is the purchaser responsible for?

  1. Conveyancer Fees: The value is determined by the Legal Practice Council’s conveyancing fee tariff guideline
  2. Administration Fee: This will cover issuing the City Council clearance certificate
  3. Bond Registration Fees: If a bond is being taken to finance the property, there will be a cost in registering this with the bank. In addition, you can make use of bond cost calculator to help work out the monthly cost of your repayments.
  4. Deeds Office Fees: This will cover the process of lodging your transfer at the relevant Deeds Office, and the value will be determined by the value of the property.
  5. Postage and Petties: Typically an amount between R600-R1000, this is a fee to cover necessary postage and small expenses incurred in the processing of transfer documents
  6. Certificate: From the homeowners association and/or body corporate for levies
  7. Transfer Duty: If the property value is above R900 000, transfer duty must be paid to the Receiver of Revenue, alternatively if the property is below that price, the purchaser will be liable for the cost of obtaining the transfer duty exemption certificate from SARS
  8. Occupational Rent: If the purchaser moves into the property prior to the registration as agreed by the seller, the purchaser will have to pay occupational rent 
  9. Disbursements: This will cover the costs of Deeds Office searches, CIPC searches and FICA verification

What costs is the seller responsible for?

  1. Rates and Taxes: 3-4 months’ worth of these costs, as prescribed by the municipality concerned, payable to the municipality
  2. Levies: Payable to the homeowners association and/or body corporate
  3. Agent Commission: A percentage of the sale price as agreed with the estate agent, and subject to 15% VAT
  4. Cancellation Costs: If there is a bond over the property, there will be costs associated with cancelling this
  5. Compliance Certificates: Costs due in obtaining electrical, gas installations and electric fence certificates (wherever applicable) and water certificate (Cape Town Municipality only) and borer beetle certificates (coastal regions only)

Follow Snymans on Facebook for more legal information, tips and news about property.

Recommended for you

Property Blog Articles | Advice | Contractual Matters | Market News
Contractual Matters

The termination of joint ownership[post_view before=""]

The action for division of property is well established in South African law. Every co-owner of property may insist on a partition of the property at any time. This may be done even in the case where there is a perpetual joint ownership agreement.

Read More
Your bond application: A key ingredient to the property transfer
Contractual Matters

Suspensive conditions[post_view before=""]

Contracts for the sale of immovable property will very often contain suspensive conditions. One of the most common types of suspensive conditions is bond approval. 

Read More
Buying tenanted properties - don’t get caught out
Contractual Matters

Electronic signatures and the virtual commissioning of affidavits[post_view before=""]

In our June newsletter, we looked at an interesting court decision handed down in 2020 by the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court of South Africa, related to the application of electronic signatures to offers to purchase land. Last year, the electronic signing of documents once again came under the spotlight in the case of Firstrand Bank Limited v Jacques Louis Briedenhann. Interestingly, this decision was also handed down by the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court, which appears to be making groundbreaking decisions in this regard.

Read More
Property Blog Articles | Advice | Contractual Matters | Market News
Contractual Matters

The property professional’s checklist for dealmaking[post_view before=""]

The property professional plays a critical role in the process of buying and selling real estate. When ‘making the deal’, they must engage with the seller to collect information and documentation that will be needed throughout the process. At the time of taking the mandate, it is crucial that they clarify certain facts and obtain specific information and documentation in order to pre-empt any issues that may arise, thus saving time.

Read More
Buying tenanted properties - don’t get caught out
Contractual Matters

Electronic signatures and OTPs[post_view before=""]

As we live in an online world, and because of the recent pandemic, electronic signatures are becoming more commonplace – and an increasing number of buyers and sellers are asking to sign their OTPs electronically.

Read More

Need more Snymans content?

Sign up for our monthly newsletter.

Property registration and transfer costs: who’s responsible for what?

A property transfer comes along with significant expenses, but being well informed about what registration and transfer costs you can expect to incur means that you can plan carefully and avoid any unpleasant and costly surprises.

The process to approval for extending a Sectional Title Unit

The buyer and seller involved in a property transfer is each responsible for certain costs related to the process and it’s important for each party to have a clear understanding of what they are liable for from the outset. To make this simple, we’ve outlined the common costs related to a property transfer and identified who is responsible for each.

What costs is the purchaser responsible for?

  1. Conveyancer Fees: The value is determined by the Legal Practice Council’s conveyancing fee tariff guideline
  2. Administration Fee: This will cover issuing the City Council clearance certificate
  3. Bond Registration Fees: If a bond is being taken to finance the property, there will be a cost in registering this with the bank. In addition, you can make use of bond cost calculator to help work out the monthly cost of your repayments.
  4. Deeds Office Fees: This will cover the process of lodging your transfer at the relevant Deeds Office, and the value will be determined by the value of the property.
  5. Postage and Petties: Typically an amount between R600-R1000, this is a fee to cover necessary postage and small expenses incurred in the processing of transfer documents
  6. Certificate: From the homeowners association and/or body corporate for levies
  7. Transfer Duty: If the property value is above R900 000, transfer duty must be paid to the Receiver of Revenue, alternatively if the property is below that price, the purchaser will be liable for the cost of obtaining the transfer duty exemption certificate from SARS
  8. Occupational Rent: If the purchaser moves into the property prior to the registration as agreed by the seller, the purchaser will have to pay occupational rent 
  9. Disbursements: This will cover the costs of Deeds Office searches, CIPC searches and FICA verification

What costs is the seller responsible for?

  1. Rates and Taxes: 3-4 months’ worth of these costs, as prescribed by the municipality concerned, payable to the municipality
  2. Levies: Payable to the homeowners association and/or body corporate
  3. Agent Commission: A percentage of the sale price as agreed with the estate agent, and subject to 15% VAT
  4. Cancellation Costs: If there is a bond over the property, there will be costs associated with cancelling this
  5. Compliance Certificates: Costs due in obtaining electrical, gas installations and electric fence certificates (wherever applicable) and water certificate (Cape Town Municipality only) and borer beetle certificates (coastal regions only)

Follow Snymans on Facebook for more legal information, tips and news about property.