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Buying and Selling Properties in UK: A Conveyance Review

Conveyance is a service that refers to transmitting goods, persons, or ownership. From the literal view conveyance, the act of conveying, means carrying or transmitting something i.e. goods or person from one place to another. Or it can be described as the means of taking something to places, for example; a truck or bus, train (carrying human). There are some other views of conveyance. If you think from a financial or investor’s view, conveyance is a document which transfers the ownership of any equity or property from one person to another. And from the law’s viewpoint, conveyance is the transformation of legal entity from one person to another. This term can also be used in the perspective of the movement of the bulk commodities like water, electricity, power or gas. Here the legal perspective of conveyance is brought into light.

Conveyance process is almost the same in any country of the world, may be with some changes in legal issues. A classic conveyancing process has mainly two major parts.

They are:

  1. Exchange of contract, when the buyer and seller are legally committed to purchase and sell.
  2. Completion, the time when the movement of ownership actually takes place with the transfer of the money to the seller and the ownership to the buyer.

The contract contains the price of the property, rights on the property, others rights and restrictions, planning restrictions and the completion date. There are a hundreds of tasks done before the exchange of contract. The buyer offers a price for the property, if suitable the seller agrees on the offer. Then the buyer surveys the property and can negotiate the price. In between this time the seller can deny to sell the property, can switch the buyer or hike higher prices. And the buyer may not actually purchase the property or offer fewer prices for the property surveyed and can ask another property to buy. Any of these changes of buyer’s or seller’s wish cannot be legally sued as the exchange of contract did not take place yet. Once the contracts are exchanged, the price will be fixed and both the parties have to fix a date to complete the transformation. No more negotiation or change of the terms of the agreement is acceptable then. If occurs, either party has the legal right to take actions against the other.

However, in UK, the conveyance process follows the same rules and steps. In England and Wales, conveyance process is done by a solicitor, a practitioner who possesses legal definition or certificate, or a licensed conveyancer. There are a high number of firms and agencies who helps out though the conveyance process. Otherwise you can get help from thousands of online agencies who deal with conveyance of properties. The domestic conveyance market is highly price competitive. One can find it quite difficult to carry out their conveyance but it is still possible.

The whole conveyance process is structured by the English law. It follows two steps which are the classic exchange of contract and the completion of the agreement. Before the exchange of contract the buyer offers a fair price and the solicitor lets the seller know about the offer. Then, if the seller agrees, buyer surveys the property and can negotiate the price. After the seller agrees, the seller’s solicitor does the pre-contract enquiries and other legal searches of the property. The buyer may have a solicitor too, who drafts the contractual agreements which needs to be approved the seller. In the intervening time any of the parties can pull out of the transaction. The seller can respond to a higher price offer, which is called “Gazumping”. Gazumping is quite legal in terms of law. The buyer doesn’t hold any right to file legal obligation against the seller. And the inverse of gazumping is termed as “Gazundering”.

The hardest time for a seller is the waiting period while the conveyance process goes through. The seller must keep patience during the whole process. The average time of a conveyance process is 10 to 12 weeks. Some processes takes shorter time while some exceeds the average. There are many online solicitor agencies that promise the shortest time to get a conveyance quote. The time length depends mostly on the critical legal obligations of the property and the surveying part.

According to reallymoving.com, a UK based conveyance website, average cost of conveyance is £850. There are some other charges which depend on the surveys of the property, agreement based costs, risks of the solicitor and property complexities. Both buyers and sellers are recommended to fix the conveyance cost and keep a draft of it before the whole process initiates.

Some precautions and facts are high recommendable for both the buyers and sellers:

  • Choose your conveyancer or solicitor carefully. As it is the most crucial part, you need to be aware of lazy or unethical conveyancer.
  • Make sure your solicitor is experienced and have legal definition. Cheap conveyancing websites are not always good.
    Be patience once you have contacted with a solicitor. Keep regular communication with the conveyancer.
    Mention the time bars to the solicitors.
  • Fix the fees of the solicitor and you may find it useful to keep a draft of that. Hidden charges may disappoint you in the end.
  • Keep your property out of debts. Mention all the legal obligations and complexities while making a contract of property paper.
  • Surveying is one of the most important steps. Buyers are highly recommended to survey the property and its papers thoroughly.
  • Contractual agreement between two parties requires extra care. Any complain or changes may raise greater harassment for both of the parties.
  • Though payments, new owner registration and completion of the conveyance process mostly supervised by the solicitors, both parties must play sincere role till the process comes to an end.

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