It’s been over a decade in the making, but next year the settlement industry will finally gain access to a new electronic conveyancing system that will enable us to complete settlements online.
The new system, called PEXA, is a hub that will allow settlement agents and financial institutions to transfer property electronically. There will be no need to meet face-to-face in the city as we do now, and the seller will receive their funds through electronic funds transfer (EFT) instead of by bank cheque.
Rather than send an outside clerk into the city, settlement agencies (like ours) will be able to enter all the required documentation into PEXA and agree on a settlement time ahead of the date. On the morning of settlement, each party will confirm that all requirements are satisfied using the system and the property will automatically settle at the agreed time.
Electronic conveyancing will not only help streamline our work processes, it will also benefit future buyers and sellers in a number of ways.
One of the biggest differences between the current system and PEXA is that with PEXA, lodgement will be immediate. This will protect buyers against losing the property to a third party who registers an interest during the ‘gap’ between settlement and registration of the new owner’s interest.
It will also reduce Landgate’s registration fees, because Landgate’s staff will have to do less manual handling of paperwork.
PEXA is already being used by financial institutions to carry out single party transactions, and it is scheduled to be released to conveyancers in mid 2014. The finer details about that release are still to come, so I’ll keep you updated in the coming months.
Update: For more information, see How and when electronic conveyancing will affect you.
Image by Pisto Casero via Flickr.