Who does conveyancing?
In a word, conveyancers! They are a type of solicitor who specialises in the legal work needed for property purchases and sales. This is called conveyancing.
Do I need a conveyancer?
If you are buying a house, yes you do. When you have agreed to buy a house or flat the estate agent’s work is largely done and now you need a conveyancer to do the legal bit. The conveyancer is the person who searches for and collects information about the property you are buying to make sure you can buy it with confidence.
This includes Local Authority Searches which show planning permissions, historical information about the land the house is built on and any known problems with flooding or landslip and things like that.
The conveyancer also deals with your mortgage broker, checks your mortgage offer and sends you the contract you will sign to transfer ownership of the house or flat to you, from the seller.
When everything is settled, contracts of transfer are signed by sellers and buyers and exchanged. This is called Exchanging Contracts and at this point you cannot back out of the sale.
At Exchange, the conveyancer will request mortgage monies from your lender and the deposit from you. Around 5 days later the money is sent to the seller and the property becomes legally yours. This is called Completion. The agent will now give you the keys to the property and it’s yours to live in from that moment.
How do I find a conveyancer?
Ask friends and family for recommendations. A good conveyancer will help you and work fast. Choose one that is close to where you live or work so that it is easy to drop in documents and visit to sign paperwork.
Estate agents often recommend conveyancers but always ask if they are paid commission to do so. If they are, they may be recommending for money, not because the service you will get will be great. Beware.
If you are selling a house as well as buying one, read Get things ready to speed up your sale Your conveyancer will thank you for it!