In this three-minute read, we share the things you should look for when instructing a solicitor to do the legal work when selling or buying a home.
When you are selling a home, you have two crucial decisions to make.
Firstly, choosing the right estate agent to sell your home is often the difference between getting a good deal or ending up with no deal.
Secondly, selecting the right conveyancing solicitor will no doubt make your life easier and less stressful. Picking a bad one often leads to headaches, hassle and having to chase them up continually.
During the 00 years we’ve been serving the people of Oxford, we’ve learned a thing or six about what to look out for when it comes to choosing a legal eagle over a tired turkey or a grumpy goose.
Conveyancing is legalese for transferring the ownership of property, whether you are buying or selling.
What Is a Conveyancing Solicitor, and What Do They Do?
A conveyancer, or sometimes known more simply as a property solicitor, does the following for you:
They will handle the contracts.
Be on hand to give legal advice.
They are the people who carry out local council searches.
They will deal with the Land Registry.
And they are the people who will transfer the funds to pay for your property.
They have a significant and vital part to play when it comes to progressing your sale or purchase through to a successful end.
We realise the importance of their role, and that’s why we’ve come up with the six things to look out for when it comes to choosing a conveyancer or a property solicitor.
Six Top Tips
1) Look for recommendations. Ask your family and friends who they have used and would they recommend them.
2) Communication is key. Some solicitors are notoriously tricky to get hold of and can take days/weeks to respond to your questions. Before instructing any solicitor, it’s worth asking if they have a system in place where you can view/check on the progress of your sale or purchase? And what is the minimum timeframe within which they promise to get back to you?
3) Do they embrace technology? This is an excellent question to ask as some solicitors do not hold technology in high esteem, which can cause problems along the line.
4) Holidays. It’s not unreasonable for you to ask if a solicitor is going on holiday during the period when you are looking to buy or sell. The last thing you want is to be nearing the exchange of contracts to seal the transaction and then discover your solicitor is sunning themselves in Marbella. Even worse is that they won’t return for a fortnight and no one else has been left to work on your file.
5) Do your research. Make sure your chosen property specialist is a member of the Law Society of England and Wales/Law Society of Scotland and a member of the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme. Conveyancers must be members of the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
Ask us. We’ve worked with hundreds of different conveyancing solicitors over the years. And we’ve experienced a real mix of the good, bad and the ugly (not that we are saying they’re unattractive cowboys or girls). Feel free to give us a call, and we’d be happy to provide you with recommendations and more insight into why choosing the right solicitor or conveyancer will make your life easier and raise your chances of property success.
There are plenty of great solicitors and conveyancers out there, you just need to do your homework to find them.
Thanks for reading and get in touch if you want answers to any of your property-related questions.
David Hurn 07753987245