FIRST, DO A DEEDS OFFICE SEARCH ON THE PROPERTY AND ON THE SELLER. You must make sure that the person named as the seller in the agreement of sale is in fact the registered owner of the property. If the seller is a company/close corporation/ trust, then ensure that the person signing the agreement of sale on behalf of the company/ close corporation/trust is authorised to do so. Also make sure that the property description is correct. The Deeds Office printout will tell you the erf number, the registered owner's full detai1s,the extent of the property and if there are any bonds, interdicts or contracts registered over the property which you should know about. You must also make sure that the property has not been attached by the bondholder (e.g. the bank) to be sold in execution because the registered owner is in arrears with his/her bond instalments. You can also get a copy of the title deed from the Deeds Office, so that you can check any title deed conditions (e.g. servitudes and height restrictions). (To do a Deeds Office search at the Deeds Office, Plein Street, Cape Town, you need the erf number and the seller's fu1l names and identity number or registration number if a company/close corporation/trust.)
SECONDLY, OF UTMOST IMPORTANCE IS THE AGREEMENT OF SALE, which must be in writing and signed by the seller and purchaser. These are the most important terms and conditions which should be in the agreement:
N.B: IT IS ALWAYS A GOOD IDEA BEFORE SIGNING AN AGREEMENT OF SALE that you request an attorney/conveyancer to look over it for you to ensure that the agreement of sale contains all the above terms and conditions and, most importantly, that the agreement of sale is specifically tailored to your particular needs.
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