How E-Conveyancing Effects Australians

The Property Exchange of Australia (PEXA) hosts an online software platform designed to support the conveyancing process in Australia. The software provides a digital workspace for conveyancers, solicitors, banks and land registries that are involved in a conveyancing campaign.

The mandate date in NSW to transition to e-conveyancing is the 1st of July, 2019. From this point, all transfers, mortgages and discharges of mortgages must be lodged electronically. To view the mandate dates for other states please click here.

In a typical scenario, a client will identify a conveyancer or solicitor to represent them during a property purchase or sale. The conveyancer will login to the PEXA online portal to create a new campaign. The bank’s representative (the buying party), the discharging bank’s representative (the selling party) and the legal representation for both are all invited to the digital workspace.

The system also synchronises with land registries in each state. As a result, all stakeholders are part of one platform and can collaborate more efficiently than traditional methods.

The core advantage is that the conveyancing process is now occurring digitally, all documentation and mortgage funds are transferred instantaneously, and settlement can occur digitally, reducing the need for human intervention.

What this means for Australian that are buying or selling a property

Hunter Legal & Conveyancing welcome this mandate and believe this will be highly advantageous for all parties involved. E-conveyancing greatly improves conveyancer’s workflow, resulting in the following benefits for Australians:

  • The conveyancing process can be much faster. At Hunter Legal and Conveyancing, we’ve have had success in moving a matter from exchange to settlement in as little as six days (normally conveyancing takes approx 4-6 weeks).
  • For sellers, the money (from the buying party) is received in their account instantaneously at settlement. Whereas prior, only the cheque would be received and this would need to be cashed, adding additional time to the process.
  • The likelihood of settlement is increased due to the system being automated (more on this below).
  • Australians can monitor their campaign using the SettleMe application (free from PEXA assuming your conveyancer is a PEXA member), this will allow for greater transparency, real time information and updates, as well as improved security (based off two factor authentication).
  • Australians will no longer receive a physical Certificate of Title in the mail, this will now be a digital certificate held by the respective land registry.
  • The conveyancing experience and customer service is improved as a result of the additional conveniences.

What this means for Australian conveyancers and solicitors

With e-conveyancing being based on a digital platform, the logistics surrounding a settlement have been greatly improved with the following benefits:

  • Reduction in the frequency a staff member needs to be out of the office to attend a settlement.
  • Settlement is now automated. Traditional settlements can be problematic due to multiple parties needing to synchronise to meet at the same date and time. Additionally there can be unforeseen circumstances (i.e. other commitments) that prevent settlement from occurring congruently.
  • If settlement needs to be re-organised this can be performed without the need to liaise with multiple parties.
  • Workflow is improved as all documentation transferred instantly.
  • The PEXA platform provides a “source of truth” for all stakeholders and there is a reduced risk of miscommunication.
  • Customer service to clients is improved as the digital workflow can free up more time.

A note on security

For readers that are unfamiliar with conveyancing in general, or want to understand how PEXA works from a security perspective, here’s a brief explanation:

Conveyancers or solicitors that want to join PEXA will undergo a membership process, including authorising their identity as a legal professional in Australia and satisfying all of PEXA’s eligibility.

Certified PEXA members will have access to PEXA’s portal and can create campaigns. At this point, they can decide whether to add their client to the workspace if this is something the client is interested in. Conveyancers will then email their clients an ID for the workspace, so the client can monitor the status of the conveyancing process using the SettleMe application.

The PEXA portal has the ability to grant different permissions to different stakeholders within each workspace. For example, the discharging bank does not need to view the lending bank’s documentation, so these files will be hidden from their view.

When a legal representative requires a person’s signature, they can either obtain this in person or use an electronic signature solution (At HLC, we use DocuSign) and then upload the verified documents to the PEXA portal.

Conclusion

Hunter Legal & Conveyancing welcome the changes to e-conveyancing and believe this digital platform will provide for a seamless and streamlined process for all parties involved.

Want Hunter Legal & Conveyancing to secure your next property transaction?

  • We provide obligation free conveyancing quotes over the phone
  • Free Contract Reviews
  • You will be provided with a dedicated conveyancer
  • Mobile and After hours service
  • We use E-Conveyancing for a smooth conveyancing process

You can get in touch by calling 1300 224 828 or through our contact page.