Conveyancing is a long and complex series of negotiations. It is wise for both parties (the buyer and seller) to engage a conveyancer to navigate this process, as it needs a bit of a legal specialist to understand the jargon. You don’t legally have to hire a conveyance, but knowing the workings of property agreements can be quite hard for a regular person. A conveyancer will help you during this exciting time. Here is how conveyancing works:
First stages: The process begins after you inform a conveyancer that you wish to use their services. After this you will receive a Letter of Engagement or Confirmation of Terms of Business. After it is signed, they will be able to start to work for you. You will be asked for the money to cover those initial costs they may incur. Your solicitor will write to the seller’s solicitor to confirm that they are instructed and request the draft contract. This should arrive with information on the property’s title and the standard forms completed by the seller. You should inform your estate agent which solicitor you plan to use so that they can send a “Memorandum of Sale” to all the relevant parties together with a copy of the property information.
Legal aspects: After the contract has been created, the solicitor will revise the draft contract documents and if necessary raise questions and discuss them with the other solicitor. The client is then required to go through the standard forms that the seller has completed and let the solicitor know if everything is correct. If you are taking out a mortgage the conveyancer will receive a copy of the offer and go through the conditions. Your solicitor shall normally undertake legal work on behalf of your lender as well.
Exchange: The contracts are then signed and exchanged by the conveyancers on behalf of the clients. Once the contracts are exchanged, you and the other party must decide on a completion date. After the contracts are exchanged, you are legally bound to buy and the seller is legally bound to sell. When the contracts are exchanged your solicitor will send your deposit to the seller’s solicitor. This acts as security for the seller in case you change your mind or for some reason are unable to pay the balance and complete the purchase.
Completion: Completion takes place when the seller’s solicitor confirms that they have received all the money that is due. Once this has happened the seller should drop the keys off to the estate agent for you to pick up. Your solicitor will arrange for the title deeds to be transferred to your name. If the house is leasehold he will also make sure that your name is entered on to the lease. Furthermore, they will get the transfer stamped to officially approve the sale. After completion, the property legally belongs to the buyer.
It is best to choose a conveyancer located near you. Decide on a conveyancer after discussing the nature of the deal with them. It is important to check their prices and quotes before making a decision. Many firms have websites where you can see reviews from their previous clients. A good firm will have plenty of recommendations or one that is highly rated. You can also ask family members and co-workers to recommend a conveyancer to you. The kind of conveyancer you need depends on the type of property or the kind of transaction you are carrying out. If you think the sale of the property will be simple, then you can just hire a licensed conveyancer. However, if you think the process will be complicated and there are problems with the property you should hire a solicitor instead, as they are more experienced and qualified to handle complications. Most solicitors are highly specialised and so they are more expensive to hire.