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August 29, 2014

Bye bye bank cheque – hello electronic conveyancing

The frustration of having to pay and provide bank cheques when buying or selling property and waiting for them to clear for settlements is nearly a thing of the past.

From October 2014 the Property Exchange Australia (PEXA) will offer electronic settlements, changing the way conveyancing is handled across Australia.

New procedures for identity checks and client authorisation forms will be required and all transfer documents will then be signed electronically.

Settlements will be booked online through the PEXA workspace, documents uploaded, checked and verified by each party and the State Revenue Office before settlement occurs. Payout figures and cheque directions will also entered into the shared PEXA workspace.

A revolution in buying and selling property

This will revolutionise conveyancing and save many headaches when dealing with banks, the long waits on hold when trying to book in settlements, and the delays in being provided funds available and payout figures.

Each party to the transaction will be able to see where the other party is at and who is responsible for any changes or delays to documents and settlement.

Funds will then be electronically transferred into accounts with no more waiting for cheques to clear.

While I would expect some teething issues in short term, the long-term benefits will be tangible:

  • work from anywhere;
  • transparency for all parties
  • funds cleared in the vendors account sooner; and
  • have titles issued in purchasers’ names within minutes of settlement.

Those worried about fraud or a dodgy solicitor or conveyancer can breathe easier knowing that PEXA requires stringent identity checks for registration along with detailed participation rules which can be viewed online on the ARNECC website. (

Only qualified persons will be able use PEXA. It will not be available to real estate agents or a self-acting vendor or purchaser.

While some law firms may be reluctant to get on board with electronic conveyancing, our firm will be embracing it.