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What service does a bond attorney offer a homebuyer?

The bond attorney is responsible for one of the most important steps in the home buying process; bond registration, which occurs after home loan approval.

Bond Attorney

Article summary

  • The bond attorney is responsible for registering the bond in the home buyer’s name. This part of the process can only occur once a home loan is granted.
  • The bond attorney is appointed by the bank that is granting the home loan.
  • The bond registration process takes about three months, and requires the home buyer to pay the bond attorney a fee that varies according to the size of the home loan.

The process of buying a home is a legal as well as financial one, and involves a number of attorneys, all of whom specialise in handling a specific part of the process.

The amount of legal jargon involved can be overwhelming to the home buyer, but don’t worry, we’re here to explain the process and show that it’s really not that complicated once you get down to it.

What is a bond attorney?

The bond attorney is one of three attorneys who will play an important role in the home buying process (the other two being the transfer attorney and, where applicable, the bond cancellation attorney). The bond attorney’s role in all this is to register the bond, which can only occur once a home loan has been approved by the bank, and the buyer has accepted the quote.

Meanwhile, the cancellation attorney takes care of cancelling the bond on behalf of the seller (so that the bond is no longer registered in the seller’s name), and the transfer attorney then transfers that bond to the buyer. The three attorneys work together and remain in close contact to ensure the process is conducted seamlessly.

What does a bond registration attorney do?

As far as the home buying process goes, the bond attorney’s tasks include:

  • Providing the transferring attorney with required information, such as a guarantee of the funds for purchasing the property (in the case of a home loan, the funds are provided by the bank).
  • Acquiring the draft deed of transfer (the legal document confirming the transfer of a property from one person to another) from the transferring attorney.
  • Preparing and providing the relevant documents for the buyer to sign.
  • Preparing the bond documents that will be sent to the Deeds Office.

The cancellation attorney and transfer attorney are also responsible for documents that will need to be sent to the Deeds Office. Once all the documents have been signed and all the necessary fees paid to the attorneys, along with additional expenses like the transfer duty; the documents can be lodged at the Deeds Office, which will then prepare the title deed.

Who appoints the bond registration attorney?

The bond attorney is appointed by the bank that granted the home loan.

At the same time, the cancellation attorney is appointed by the bank currently holding the bond, and the transferring attorney is appointed by the seller of the property.

So if you’re the buyer of the home, you don’t have to worry about appointing any attorneys. However, you will have to pay fees to the bond attorney, as well as the transfer attorney. The cost of bond registration varies according to the size of your home loan.

You can use ooba home loans’ Transfer Cost Calculator to determine what you’ll likely owe on bond registration and transfer costs.

How long does all of this take?

The buyer should allow at least three months for the bond registration process to be completed. You can use this time to put funds aside for additional expenses.

Factors that could delay the process include:

  • Failure on the part of the buyer or seller to provide the necessary information.
  • The seller or buyer not complying with all the clauses on the Offer to Purchase, or the requirements of the banks involved.
  • Failure by the buyer or seller to pay the necessary fees on time.
  • A delay in receiving required rates from the municipal authorities, and/or the rates clearance certificate from the transfer attorney.
  • The bond attorney, transferring attorney and cancellation attorney being from three separate firms.

How can I make the bond registration process easier for myself?

One way you can make the process easier is by hiring an estate agent, who will be able to walk you through the process. If you’re the seller of the home, the estate agent can usually recommend a transfer attorney.

If you’re the home buyer, acquiring the services of a home loan comparison service can also help with the process, by granting you a better chance of receiving a home loan in the first place. The home loan comparison service applies to multiple banks on your behalf, in order to secure the best deal.

In addition to that, South Africa’s leading home loan comparison service, ooba home loans, provides a range of tools that make the home buying process easier. Start with their home loan calculators; then use their free, online prequalification tool, the ooba Bond Indicator, to determine what you can afford. Finally, when you’re ready, you can apply for a home loan.

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