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Settlement Day – Through the Eyes of a Settlement Clerk

My name is Paul and I am a settlement clerk.

It’s an interesting life for a settlement clerk. Most of us would admit to fear, confusion and intimidation when first entering the realm of the settlement mosh pit. No too dissimilar to stepping into a cage for a round of extreme fighting with world champions.

The in-house settlement agents will be situated behind the counter while the attending settlement agents all jockey for the best position at said counter. It’s like happy hour at the pub on a Friday night, except no one is serving drinks. At 2pm precisely (you could set your cuckoo clock to it) the shouting begins. And by shouting I don’t mean buying everyone a beer… I mean SHOUTING! And you need to shout loud to be heard. You will either be shouting for the opposing side solicitor, shouting out your own name or shouting out for a bank.

The interesting thing about working for a place like Monkey Conveyancing is that initially calling out Monkey invoked giggling or bemused looks. Now we are just known as the guys in purple. We are easy to spot and don’t have to shout so much these days. But with some settlement locations there can be up to 30 settlement agents in attendance, so it can get a little loud and difficult to locate your opponent.

The settlement itself usually only lasts a couple of minutes and can either be like a graceful waltz or a game of hot potato. But all parties involved have the same objective – to settle on time. Because no settlement clerk wants to come back at 4:45pm to complete a rescheduled settlement – particularly on a Friday afternoon.

Who needs to stand for an hour on the treadmill on those days when you have 7 settlements in various locations across town all booked within 15 minutes of each other, as well as banking at CBA, NAB, ANZ, BOQ, Suncorp and Westpac – with a trip to Titles office thrown in for good measure.

Next time you are downtown Brisbane and you see a guy in purple looking frazzled and walking at a fast pace, you’ll know exactly what is going on.