Property transactions are a critical aspect of doing business in South Africa. Whether you are acquiring a new office space, expanding your industrial facilities, or investing in commercial property, understanding the conveyancing process is essential. Conveyancing involves the legal transfer of property ownership from one party to another. A well-established framework of laws, regulations, and case law governs South Africa. In this article, we’ll provide a guide to the conveyancing process in South Africa, with a focus on how it applies to business property transactions.

The Conveyancing Process in South Africa

  1. Offer to Purchase: 

The conveyancing process typically begins with the negotiation of a sale through an Offer to Purchase (OTP) agreement. This agreement outlines the terms and conditions of the property sale, including the purchase price, payment terms, and any other relevant details. It is crucial to seek legal advice during this phase to ensure that your interests are protected.

  1. Property Search and Due Diligence: 

Once an OTP is accepted, the conveyancer will conduct a property search to verify the property’s title and assess any existing encumbrances or restrictions. Due diligence is a crucial step in the process, ensuring that the property is free of any legal issues that could affect your business operations.

  1. Transfer of the Property: 

The formal transfer of the property from the seller to the buyer is executed through a deed of sale. The buyer will need to secure the necessary financing, and the conveyancer will prepare the transfer documents and ensure compliance with the Deeds Registries Act.

  1. Deeds Office Lodgment: 

The transfer documents are lodged at the relevant Deeds Office for registration. South Africa has a Deeds Registration System where all property transactions are recorded, providing legal security and certainty for property ownership. The Deeds Office ensures that the property is transferred correctly and that the title deed reflects the new owner’s details.

  1. Payment of Transfer Costs: 

Both the buyer and seller are responsible for certain costs associated with the transfer. These may include transfer duties, conveyancer’s fees, and other miscellaneous expenses. The costs are typically set out in the OTP agreement.

  1. Registration and Possession: 

Once the Deeds Office completes the registration process, the property transfer is officially recognized. The buyer takes possession of the property, and the title deed is updated to reflect the new owner’s details. This marks the completion of the conveyancing process.


A variety of legislation guides South African conveyancing. The primary pieces of legislation that regulate property transactions and conveyancing in South Africa include the Deeds Registries Act, the Alienation of Land Act, and the Transfer Duty Act. These laws set out the legal framework for property ownership, transfer, and taxation.


Understanding the conveyancing process in South Africa is crucial for business owners looking to buy, sell, or invest in property. This legal process involves multiple steps, from the negotiation of an OTP to the registration of the property with the Deeds Office. Legal advice and due diligence are essential to ensure a smooth and legally compliant transaction.

While this article provides an overview of the conveyancing process, it is essential to consult with a qualified attorney with expertise in property law to guide you through the specifics of your transaction. Property transactions can be complex, and professional legal guidance will help protect your business interests and ensure a successful transfer of property ownership.

For any assistance, contact an attorney at SchoemanLaw.