Slow service delivery in the Deeds Office to impact on economy. Is this our local “9/12”

Buying a home ?- Do your homework first
March 7, 2016
No drop yet in housing demand
March 24, 2016

When you plan a property transaction, one of the last things on your mind is the return of your title deed after the registration in the deeds office. This can cost a property owner thousands of rands.

Our experience is that the local deeds office is one of the worst performers when it comes to the delivery of the title deeds after registration. This slow/bad service may cost the economy and a property owner as a property owner must now wait months to get a title deed out of the deeds office – as example when the property was sold again, or if a further mortgage bond must be registered.

We also cannot understand why the Deeds Office is so much in arrears, when the rest of the country appears to be must faster in their service deliver, in particular when it comes to the delivery of a title deed.

This problem is compounded by the frustration experienced by conveyancing attorneys, estate agents and members of the public when the deeds office in Cape Town announced late in December 2015 that they will close their offices for almost 3 weeks for a Christmas break – the result that many property transactions, worth millions of rands, could not be registered.

From the Deeds Office

We can advise as follows:

  • As at end January 2016 our backlog total stood at ±50000.
  • The Image Scanning section commenced with an action plan on 1 February 2016 whereby a renewed attempt was made to get all the backlog deeds scanned.

During February we scanned 46116 deeds that were then ready for verification on 1 March.

I can report that for the period 1 – 10 March we verified 17000 deeds and delivered 13900 deeds. We want to advise conveyancers that we anticipate that we will be delivering the 46000 deeds within the next 3 – 4 weeks.

We are requesting the cooperation of conveyancers:

  1. To collect deliveries daily as we do not have the space to store deliveries
  2. To deal with requests for expedited deliveries cautiously and only in very urgent matters as the expedited requests places an extra burden on the section. If we stick to our action plan, we project that we should be able to deliver deeds registered up to end December 2015 by end March 2016.

Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

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