Gawie le Roux on Agreements of Sale

    Specific clauses

    • Transfer costs
    • Transfer attorney
    • Breach

     

    The above three clauses of the agreement of sale form the subject of this practice manual. Although not one of them is an essential or material term of the agreement, they are all extremely important in order to avoid unnecessary uncertainty, delays and litigation.

    It is clear from the court cases that there is a great deal of uncertainty and ambiguity regarding all three clauses, but it is particularly disturbing to note that property practitioners are still finding it difficult to master the breach clause, which is admittedly a minefield. This is a complex matter which is really the field of the litigation attorney, but of which conveyancers also require a thorough knowledge.

    Aim of the practice manual

    The aim of the manual is to equip the people who regularly draft, interpret and execute agreements of sale with the necessary theoretical and practical knowledge to enable them to draft better agreements of sale.

    Bad drafting

    Agreements of sale are drafted by property practitioners or even by laymen every time immovable property changes hands. But, to judge from the large number of court cases concerning agreements of sale that serve before the high courts in South Africa every year, there are some remarkable shortcomings and defects in the agreements drafted for both small and large transactions, by both professional and lay persons.