You might be thinking of buying or selling your home or a piece of land in the near future. An important aspect to that is whether you are able to produce a Title Deed when the time comes for you to sell or buy. A property may not be transferred unless the original title deed is provided, but due to life’s happenings the original Title Deed is often lost or destroyed.
A Title Deed is a legal document which serves as confirmation and proof that one is the owner of a home or a piece of land. This legal document will be registered and recorded in the owner’s name at the Deeds office. Therefore in the instance where an original title deed is lost or destroyed a Conveyancer on behalf of the registered owner of the deed, may lodge an application at the deeds office to obtain a certified copy of the deed.
The applicant for a certified copy needs to make a written application accompanied by an affidavit. In the affidavit the following must be contained:
- the registered owner states in whose custody the deed may have been before the loss or destruction;
- the description of the home or piece of land;
- statement that the deed has not been pledged and is not being held by anyone as security of debt or otherwise;
- statement that it is actually lost or destroyed and cannot be found after a diligent search;
- a description of the circumstances under which the deed was lost or destroyed; and
- should the original title deed be found, the Registrar of Deeds will be provided with the title deed.
It is of importance that when you’re buying or selling property, the original deed must be in place and submitted to the conveyancer and in the event it is not, contact your conveyancer to assist you.
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Article contributed by Fortunate Sebulele of Tuckers Attorneys.