Settlement Day Facts for Buying & Selling property

The conveyancing process can be a lengthy financial transaction but once your Purchase or Sale Contract becomes unconditional and your conveyance is due to settle you may be wondering what happens next?

River City Conveyancing will help guide you through even the most complex conveyancing problems without the stress. With our team of friendly conveyancers we are Queensland’s most experienced and original ‘boutique’ firm led by Brisbane solicitor John Horrocks. With over 30 years of helping Queenslanders buy and sell property in Brisbane and the greater Queensland state there’s not much we haven’t seen.

Call us today for affordable conveyancing with premium legal advice on 07 3013 2300. Email your contract to

Wondering about how you can prepare for your upcoming Property Transaction settlement? Read our newest guide on Settlement Day Facts to help you prepare for the final step of your conveyance:

What happens on 'Settlement Day'?

Usually in Queensland you will:

  • Pay the remaining amount of the purchase price to the Seller if you are Buying
  • The Buyer will receive the Title of the property into their name
  • Collect the keys from the Agent or representative
  • The Buyer will take physical possession of the property

What is a normal settlement date in Queensland?

Generally the date for the day of settlement is 4 to 6 weeks or 30 to 90 days after the contract is finalised. Your date of settlement is negotiable between yourself, the Buyer and/or Seller before the contract is signed.

Is PEXA compulsory in Queensland/ the new eConveyancing Mandate?

From 2023 the Queensland Government has mandated that all settlements are required to be undertaken digitally online.

If either party needs a physical transfer to occur on settlement for any reason this must be negotiated and agreed upon before the REIQ House and Land Contract is signed and therefore in considerable advance of settlement preparations.

To read more about how eConveyancing works read our eConveyancing in Queensland blog post here: What is eConveyancing

Conveyancing Settlement Searches

Following a legal contract review we will have performed several property searches on your behalf before you sign anything. Once your conveyance proceeds we will recommend several searches to be undertaken. The results of these searches are to be taken into consideration before ‘Finance, Building and Pest or other Special Conditions’ are deemed to be satisfied.

To read more about Conveyancing Special Conditions and Conveyancing Contract Clauses read our free online reference guide: Conveyancing Contract Clauses & Special Conditions

River City Conveyancing Standard Search Package for Buyers:

  • Title Search upon receipt of the contract
  • Council Rates Search to find information about the state of the rate account
  • Special water meter reading to make sure you are not charged for the seller's water consumption.
  • Main Roads Search
  • Land Tax Clearance Search
  • Registered Plan of Land
  • Title Search on the day of settlement
  • After your REIQ contract becomes unconditional we will then obtain a final number of searches that are important to your settlement and any settlement adjustments. These may include Rates, Water Usage and Land Tax searches. If your financier requires any additional searches we will notify you of the cost and proceed with these searches.

What date must the Seller pay for Council rates?

The Seller must pay the rates up to the date of and also including the day of settlement. The Buyer will start paying council rates the next day after the date of settlement.

What are Conveyancing Settlement adjustments?

The adjustments are the inclusion of the outlays and costs that both Buyer and Seller have paid so that each will fairly pay for those that correspond to the dates of their ownership of the property. 

Settlement Figures are prepared and adjustments made and finalised between all parties, after which they are then inserted into the PEXA Workspace. This is so that the incoming bank knows how much money to provide for settlement to occur. If there is the need for additional funds so that the conveyance can settle your lawyer will notify you and place them into their Trust Account in preparation for settlement day. 

Many solicitors prepare Settlement Adjustments in a timeline outside of the PEXA Workspace. With the Buyer's searches (rates, water, land tax etc.) the conveyancing lawyers will prepare adjustments to either pay the Buyer for a future amount that will be incurred that the Seller owes some part of or alternatively to compensate the Seller for an amount that they have paid earlier which the Buyer has received the benefit of.

For example, if the Seller has paid the rates up to April 31st but the Buyer is taking the Property over April 1st, the Buyer should have to compensate the Seller for the rates they have paid in advance but will not receive the benefit from.

More examples of expenses that can be adjusted for settlement might include:

  • Less adjustments for the Mortgage Release fee;
  • Adjustments for Rates, Water, Land Tax;
  • Any unpaid taxes by the Seller which are subject of a Notice on the Title 
  • The Seller's Agent fees
  • Negotiated adjustments that are part of any Building & Pest negotiations;
  • GST in certain circumstance (i.e. for commercial properties);
  • Rent; or Bond (i.e. for commercial properties) 

River City Conveyancing ‘Before Settlement Steps’:

  1. Work with financier toward correct provision of funds for settlement to occur
  2. Prepare settlement figures with relevant parties
  3. Receive correspondence from us and if required, complete and sign Information
  4. Statement and Form 2.1 (Stamp Duty Declaration) and return it to us immediately
  5. If are going to be living in the home or unit....ensure that you signed and have witnessed Form 2.1 (Stamp Duty) Declaration) for the Office of State Revenue ASAP)
  6. Arrange settlement time and location with your financier and seller’s solicitor
  7. Advise financier of cheque details for settlement
  8. Work with your financier to ensure they are ready for settlement, have no outstanding
  9. issues and documents correctly signed and received by them
  10. Forward balance of settlement monies to be paid to seller, stamp duty and fees by way of bank cheques as directed by us.
  11. Advise you of the cheque details required at settlement if you are buying

The Final Property / Pre-Settlement Inspection

We recommend if you are buying a home or property that you may like to conduct a pre-settlement inspection. There may be small details or repairs that require attention from the Seller before you take possession of your new house or land.

Such issues could include for example replacement of inadequate or old curtains or installed appliances, stained carpet or any necessary professional cleaning, up to undiscovered structural damages that have occurred after your original ‘Building and Pest inspection’.

The final property settlement is your opportunity to talk with your conveyancing lawyers about any finer details or problems that need to be resolved before you pay the purchase price in full to the owner. Your conveyancing solicitor will communicate with the Seller to ensure your financial interests are protected and all issues are resolved before settlement occurs.

When can I collect the keys after buying a new house?

The collection of the keys to your new home is an exciting moment and will be arranged for the date of Settlement or thereafter if necessary between yourself, the Agent and Seller.

Tenancies at settlement?

At settlement there may be either vacant possession of a house or unit or an REIQ contract that includes a tenancy agreement to stay in place. The in’s and out’s of conveyancing laws can be complicated which is why we recommend you talk to an experienced conveyancing lawyer when it comes to reviewing your contract. River City Conveyancing can draft special legal clauses and conditions to protect your rights.

Where and when is settlement held in Queensland?

Since 2023 the Queensland Government has made eConveyancing compulsory in the sunshine state. From this year after settlement figures have been calculated, approved and both parties have accepted to participate in the PEXA online workspace there are a few steps until settlement is completed electronically.

The time and date of this settlement is agreed upon in writing between all parties and this time is considered of the essence and legally binding. After settlement preparations are finalised the day of settlement will arrive and the following steps will occur to complete a conveyance.


  1. The bank that is transferring an incoming balance from the purchaser to the seller of the house, unit or land must upload the outstanding funds.
  2. The outgoing bank will upload their ‘pay out figure’ or the amount required for settlement.
  3. All parties involved in settlement including the Seller, Buyer, Agent, Buyer’s Solicitors and Seller’s Solicitors will need to sign that all details are true and correct.
  4. Settlement begins with all funds being transferred between financiers or banks.
  5. Transfers, Release of Mortgages and other forms are sent directly to the Land Titles Office.
  6. Once the Queensland Revenue Office receives the payment of Transfer Duty the status of the matter will change to settled in the PEXA online workspace.
  7. Following this the settlement is considered complete and final.

What are the steps after a conveyancing settlement?

River City Conveyancing will generate the stamp transfer document and send letters confirming settlement to agent and relevant parties. We will remit stamp duty to the Office of State Revenue.

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Phone: 07 3013 2300


Level 3, 26 Wharf Street
Brisbane QLD 4000

PO Box 10445
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QLD 4000

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