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Society to open web system to all conveyancers
LawGazette - UK
All conveyancing professionals will have access to the Law Society’s online conveyancing system – so long as they pass due diligence tests equivalent to those in the Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme, the team behind the project has revealed.

The Conveyancing Portal, due to go live next year, aims to streamline the process, cut the number of failed transactions and reduce the risk of fraud, Elliott Vigar, the Society’s head of commercial investments, said.

Vigar told the Legalex conference in London that the Society intends to allow licensed conveyancers as well as solicitors to use the portal to ensure widespread take-up of the ‘one-stop shop’.

‘It has to be available to all conveyancers not just solicitors. Our intention is that the portal will be open to every conveyancing professional, solicitors, licensed conveyancers and legal executives if they get approval,’ Vigar said.

Property laws 'imperil plans worth billions'
IolProperty - South Africa
Legislative delays and bureaucratic legislation were placing billions of rand in new property developments at risk of being scrapped, the SA Property Owners Association (Sapoa) has warned.

Neil Gopal, the chief executive, said this week that the country could not afford these delays, especially with high unemployment and lacklustre growth, and the issue needed to be addressed urgently.

Gopal said the commercial property sector and related construction industry made a significant contribution to the economy and should not be underestimated because it would be a key contributor to achieving the goals of the National Development Plan.

Two pieces of legislation are of particular concern to Sapoa: the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act, which essentially replaces the Development Facilitation Act, and the Subdivision of Agricultural Land Act.

Offers to purchase don't always lead to property sales
Rawson - South Africa
In residential property deals there is a world of difference between an Offer to Purchase and an Agreement of Sale. This is not always recognised by estate agents or the parties involved, nor do many seem to understand that such agreements can prove unsuccessful in many cases, says Wayne Albutt of Rawson Property Group.

'The simple fact,' says Albutt, 'is that some 70% of Offers to Purchase do not result in a sale and only just over 50% of Agreements of Sale, which require mortgage finance, actually result in a successful property transfer.' The reasons for Offers to Purchase falling through, says Albutt, are almost too obvious to state, but it may help to review them.

'The most common cause of an Offer to Purchase not materialising into an Agreement of Sale,' he says, 'is that the offer is not acceptable to the seller because of its net price, or one or two of its terms, or one or more of the conditions being unacceptable. These could include the date of transfer, early occupation, occupational interest, undertakings by the seller, or the offer being subject to the sale of the purchaser's property ? or other factors.'

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