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    Hire a Conveyancer

    Here you’ll find everything you need to know to hire a conveyancer.

    To ensure you hire a legitimate expert, you can check whether they’re registered with the Council for Licensed Conveyancers or the Solicitors Regulatory Authority.

    You can search for a conveyancer near you, receive three free quotes and select a conveyancer who is perfect for the job. Once you’re happy with your choice of professional and the quote offered, they can get to work straight away with helping you sell or buy a property. Using Myjobquote is an effortless way of discovering a conveyancer near you with a quote within your budget.

    What is Conveyancing?

    Conveyancing is the legal handover of the property ownership from one person to another. The process starts when an offer on a property is accepted and ends when buyers have received the keys.

    What is a Conveyancer?

    A conveyancer is there to help you with the legal transaction of buying or selling a property. They’ll put together legal documents and contracts, organise for the transfer of title to be registered with Land Registry and offer their clients legal, mortgage and property advice. They are basically a house moving solicitor and help with all the legalities involved with selling or buying a home.

    What Does Conveyancing a Property Involve?

    Firstly, decide whether you’re hiring a professional or completing it yourself. It’s true, you can manage your own conveyancing, but it’s highly discouraged. Having a trained, legal professional is always advocated. Conveyancers don't do all the work and it is likely that you'll also need to hire a surveyor for your sale, occasionally you may be able to save on the cost by hiring them both at the same time.

    Now you’ve appointed a conveyancer; a draft contract is drawn up with their prices, terms of engagement, and any required deposits. Once this is agreed, contacting the other party’s conveyancer is next, to request contracts, additional details and standard forms. After examining all the required documentation, any enquires, and queries will be raised on your behalf while you consider any forms given to you to complete.

    Property searches are a necessity, especially when purchasing a property. Your conveyancer should recommend specific searches and organise them too, as well as organising the searches from your mortgage provider (if you have one).

    Before any contracts are signed and exchanged, your conveyancer will need to check all queries are returned and are acceptable. Any included fixtures and fittings need to be agreed, listed and signed off. The completion date has to be agreed on by both parties; you can expect this to take between one to four weeks after the contracts have exchanged. This process can take longer due to unforeseen setbacks, which have often during the property purchasing process. Any deposits owed to the seller are transferred into the conveyancer’s account ready for the time of the ownership exchange.

    When the time comes to exchange contracts, both parties need to agree on a date and time to complete the transaction. Your conveyancer will carry out this exchange on your behalf; this is typically done by both conveyancers reading the contracts aloud over the phone while being recorded, to double-check the contracts are identical. The contracts will then be mailed to one another.

    Now the contracts have been exchanged, the purchase of the property is legally binding with a fixed date for moving. If the purchase isn’t completed, the buyers can lose a deposit, and the seller can’t accept another offer.

    The property deeds will transfer into the new owner’s name, the moving day is organised, and the conveyancer will post a final bill statement.

    What are Conveyancing Searches?

    Conveyancing (or property) searches are enquiries made by a conveyancer on your behalf, to find out more information about a property during the property-buying process.

    Below is a list of compulsory and optional conveyancing searches that your conveyancer may arrange for you:

    • The seller’s legal ownership needs to be investigated to ensure the ‘title plan’ and ‘title register’ are under the Land Registry, proving the seller’s ownership. These checks are a legal requirement to sell.

    • Local authority searches. If any new plans are developing in the area such as a motorway through your new garden or radioactive gas is rife in the village, this search will tell you precisely what’s occurring.

    • Flood risk. This search investigates flood reports around the area to determine if the property is a flood risk. The Land Registry has created a Flood Risk Indicator to offer flood risk information of the property. If you’re arranging an environmental search, you won’t have to purchase the flood risk search too.

    • Chancel repair search. An investigation to discover whether a property is liable to subsidise the costs of preserving and refurbishing the local church. It’s a medieval law that still in effect for some properties in Britain. If a property has to pay chancel repair, you can opt to take out chancel repair insurance, costing about £20.

    • Water authority searches. The water and drain checks will give you up-to-date information on everything you need to know about a property’s water supply, sewer networks and present billing details.

    • Non-compulsory and location-specific searches. Various searches and checks are only needed in particular areas and neighbourhoods. A property may need more than the compulsory searches depending on the situation. For example:
      • Extra Local Authority queries involving pipelines, public paths, common land, noise reduction zones etc.
      • Coal mining checks.
      • Cheshire Brine searches.
      • Tin Mining checks in Cornwall.

    • Environmental Search. Landmark or Groundsure provide this search, and most properties will opt to have it carried out. The report is extensive and will offer details about polluted land at (or around) the property, landfills, industrial history, flood predictions, radon hazard, ground stability, as well as other topics.

    How much searches cost vary due to location, but they are an extra charge on top of your conveyancing charges, so ensure you budget for them.

    What if I Have a Mortgage?

    If you’re not buying a property outright and you have a mortgage arrangement for it instead, you have to employ a conveyancer to help with the legal process and won’t be able to DIY. The conveyancer you hire will need a copy of the mortgage proposal so the terms and conditions can be examined.

    If you’re selling a domestic property to buy another, most mortgages are portable so you can transfer them from one property to another. You have to speak to your mortgage provider and listen to what they advise.

    Cost of a Conveyancer

    Conveyancing fees can vary drastically, depending on location and if additional searches are needed. A large percentage covers the labour completed by then conveyancer, and the rest will cover legal fees and searches. Below you’ll find a breakdown of what might be included in a final bill:

    Stamp duty - 0-12%

    Bank transfer - £15-£35

    Fraud check - £10-£20

    Anti-money laundering - £5-£25

    Title deeds copy - £10

    Searches - £200-£500

    Bankruptcy check - £5

    Transfer of ownership - £200-£400

    Help to buy - £150-£350

    An average the overall conveyancing cost would be between £400-£1500. With the average fee being around £1000 in total.

    Who Can Do My Conveyancing?

    There’s a variety of options to choose from when it comes to deciding who completes your conveyancing. People who are qualified for the property buying process are licensed conveyancers and solicitors.

    You can complete your own conveyancing (as long as you don’t need a mortgage), but it isn’t endorsed as conveyancing can be a very complicated drawn-out process. If anything goes wrong, you also won’t be covered and have to deal with the fall out yourself.

    You mortgage provider or estate agent can offer a recommended specialist, even though it’s a more straightforward option, you will more than likely pay more in fees.

    Do I Need a Conveyancer?

    If you’re selling or buying property, you’ll need a conveyancer to act on your behalf and guide you through the entire process. They’re qualified to understand legal property jargon and how to transfer ownership on the properties title deeds through Land Registry. You can muddle through the process yourself if you wish, but if you’re not specialised in property law, it may become overwhelming.

    Benefits of a Conveyancer

    There are a variety of benefits to hiring a conveyancer that will make the property buying process far easier. These include:

    • Managing legal elements:

      Conveyancers will be able to explain any legal issues with a property and will always have the client’s best interest in mind.

    • Implements expansive searches:

      This is a great benefit of employing a conveyancer. They’ll search properties to find potential problems and tackle them accordingly.

    • Arranging any finances:

      Knowing the ins and outs of all finances and charges is a huge advantage when hiring a conveyancer. They’ll inform you of any charges you can expect and help with your mortgage and deposits too.

    • Will enquire any queries or disagreements with estate agents:

      When selling a property, conveyancers can help with choosing an estate agent and will speak on your behalf. They’re far more knowledgeable with the property business and less likely to fall for any schmoozing.

    • They guarantee approval with the contract:

      A conveyancer will work on a contract until you’re completely satisfied. They can explain any terms and conditions of the contract and alter anything thing on your behalf.

    • Expenditures will be summarised:

      All the conveyancer’s expenses will be estimated and explained, as well as ensuring deposits are received/paid on time.

    • You will know the basis of ownership:

      If a property is owned by more than one person, a conveyancer can clarify in detail how this can work, the terms and conditions, and the consequences if the joint ownership splits.

    What Happens After Completion?

    After the completion of the house is finalised, a conveyancer will tie up any loose ends. This will include sending you the final bill for their payment, sending a copy of the title deeds to your mortgage provider and paying any stamp duty owed for you. If you’re a seller, the estate agent will need to be paid too.

    All the legal documents and paperwork concerning your new property will take three weeks after completion to arrive.

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