A new project has been launched designed to streamline
conveyancing procedures through the use of an online system.
The initiative is called 'PEXA' (Property Exchange
Australia) and is projected to be operational nationwide in
Electronic conveyancing will initially operate alongside the
current manual paper-based settlement and lodgement
It is not intended that all land title
transactions will be completed electronically. It
is estimated that between 30-40% of transactions will still be done
by paper lodgement. Some transactions, for instance those
that involve complex title issues or a number of financiers, will
still be settled manually, e.g. a settlement that is
conditional on the registration of a plan or easement.
How will PEXA operate?
The scheme will attempt to convert the conveyancing process into
a standardised and user-friendly system, where the following is
online review and completion of documents by finance
institutions and law firms;
lodgement of property documents for registration with the
relevant Lands Department in each state. This does not
include the land title documents themselves, i.e. Certificates of
Title would still have to be delivered manually;
confirmation from the Lands Department to all parties once the
documents are registered; and
settlement of all financial transactions on a nominated date
including the distribution of settlement funds, fees and
How will PEXA benefit companies?
It is expected that the efficiencies of an electronic system
will save companies both time and money. The registration of
documents should be faster and more accurate; money will be easily
transferrable at settlement and parties will have access to a clear
and streamlined communication platform. Registration fees
will still apply, so the cost savings will be due to shorter
periods of time between an agreement and the eventual registration
of a new property interest. There may also be a lower risk of
fraud and errors as documents move from settlement instantly to
lodgement for registration.
What should companies do now?
Presently no action needs to be taken. It is an ambitious
project which may well commence later than currently
Once implemented, the transition to e-conveyancing is unlikely
to require significant adjustment on the part of
institutions. The scheme's implementation will more
affect lenders and solicitors whose processes will need
adjustment. Ultimately, it is projected that cost savings
will flow through to vendors and purchasers.
The Council announced planning policies to encourage more inner suburban retirement village and aged care development.
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