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Paperless property deals have arrived in the west – saving trees and time

Paperless property deals have arrived in the west – saving trees and time

It’s about to get a whole lot easier to finalise real estate transactions in the west

A Point Cook law firm predicts faster completion of real estate matters if more buyers and sellers go digital.

Wendy Williams, Solicitor at West Lawyers recently completed her first online property settlement and said going digital will quickly catch on.

“It will transform how property is bought and sold for many buyers and sellers. Within an hour of completing my first online property exchange the seller that I acted for had the money in his account,” she said.

“Documents were exchanged electronically removing paper-based errors, costly bank cheques and express postage. The Purchaser was also registered on title within an hour of settlement, a process that can often take weeks using a manual process.

“The problem with the old way is that paper is cumbersome, time consuming and expensive. As a back-up plan I regularly get my clients to sign duplicates of everything just in case something goes missing in the post. 

"Electronic settlement removes stress for my clients as there is no more running around to get documents back on time and organising bank cheques for a paper-based settlement. My clients have busy lives and time is a precious commodity.

“Everything else is going digital. It’s the way the world is going. Property exchange has to come online too.”

According to a PwC Digital Property Report, one in three Australians find the process of property settlement stressful.

The process of buying and selling properties online is undertaken through PEXA - Property Exchange Australia. PEXA evolved from a 2010 Council of Australian Governments initiative to bring property settlement into the digital economy, reforming a paper-based system dating back to the 1850s.

The digital era push has been led by the national and state arms of the Institute of Conveyancers, Law Societies, land registries and banks.

Property industry facts* • The national $6.7 trillion property is Australia’s largest asset class • The Victorian residential property industry is valued at $1,847 trillion *Source: Core Logic RP Data, May 2016.

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