I am putting my home of the last 20+ years on the market and my estate agent has provided a conveyancing quote which seems very high. After searching online for quotes from other Solicitors they seem more reasonable, but none of them are in my local area. Will I get a good service from a remote Solicitor, or are there reasons to stay with a local one?
A local conveyancer may have familiarity with your neighbourhood which might be beneficial to your sale in certain circumstances, but generally it is not a specific requirement, as the conveyancing process will not vary much across different parts of the country.
Your solicitor will procure the title deed from the Land Registry online gateway as evidence of your ownership of the sale property, and this will also be used by the buyer’s law firm. If they are not located locally then they may need to contact you if they have any questions.
Even if your solicitor is not located near to you, it is easy to stay in touch and to have important documents signed via case tracking, post, email and phone, and it is unlikely you will need to call into the office for face to face meetings. This also results in a speedier conveyancing service, and can be more convenient if you have a busy schedule and ongoing job commitments. Another benefit is that clients can also conduct property transactions in the England and Wales while living abroad.
Don’t just go for the cheapest quote, ensure there are no hidden extras, and check whether they have good reviews which establish respectability. Estate agent recommended solicitors tend to cost more, as the law firm will need to pay the agent a referral fee per instruction, which is passed onto the consumer.
If you go with the estate agent recommended conveyancing firm, then ask whether there is a referral fee being charged by the agent and how much it is. Ask the solicitor how much they have paid the estate agent if they won’t tell you. Many estate agents receive hundreds of pounds in referral fees, which may shock you. Read more about referral fees in our guides.