Frances Lindsay & Co’s Guide to Conveyancing

December 10, 2015  |   Posted by :   |   Blog

property law solicitor Maidenhead

The best way to help the process move along as quickly and smoothly as possible is to get your solicitor involved as soon as possible and let them deal with the legal aspects of property law and conveyancing.

Conveyancing is the legal transference of home ownership, from the moment your offer on a property is accepted to the exchange of keys. Our simple guide below covers all the basic aspects of conveyancing, step-by-step, so that you know exactly what to expect when you move house:

  • Instructing a solicitor to handle the conveyancing will help you to navigate all the legal aspects of selling and buying a new home and avoid delays and extra costs. Get a free online quote from Frances Lindsay & Co to help you get started!
  • When you appoint a conveyancer they will draw up terms of engagement to set out the costs involved. You may be able to choose fixed fees for each stage of the process to help you budget accurately.
  • Your solicitor will communicate with your seller’s solicitor to make sure everything is going to plan – they can also obtain important administrative documents such as the draft contract, the property’s title deeds and other forms. You will then be able to go through this documentation with your conveyancer and raise any queries or issues at this point.
  • Your conveyancer will be able to carry out legal property searches to ensure there are no other problems to be aware of, or local authority, water authority and environmental searches required to check for forthcoming developments, flood risks or issues in the area. Your mortgage lender may also require certain searches for liability purposes.
  • You will also need to check the title register and title plan of your new property with the Land Registry to prove ownership, as well as organising any surveys appropriate to the type of property.
  • If you’re taking out a mortgage, your solicitor will go through the conditions of the offer and ensure everything is in place for the sale. You will need to organise a mortgage valuation, too – although your mortgage company may include this for free. Before you exchange, you’ll also need to organise buildings insurance for the new property.
  • When you’re ready to sign the contract for your new home, your solicitor will confirm all the details of the sale, such as making sure fixtures and fittings are as expected, any enquires have been resolved, the completion date has been agreed, and the deposit is scheduled to be transferred in time for the exchange.
  • It’s always worth visiting the property one last time to do a visual check on the condition and inventory, too!
  • Your solicitor will then handle the exchange of contracts and release it others in the chain as appropriate. Once you’ve exchanged, you will be legally bound to buy your intended property – if you pull out now you will be liable to lose your deposit – just as the seller is legally bound to accept your offer.
  • At this point, your solicitor will lodge an interest in the property to freeze the deeds for 30 days, giving you time to pay the seller and apply to the Land Registry to transfer the deeds into your name.
  • Before completion, your solicitor will provide you with their bill, which should be paid at least one day before you complete the purchase.
  • Finally, your solicitor will finish up any final admin issues, such as paying Stamp Duty Land Tax on your behalf and send a copy of the property’s title deeds to your mortgage provider.
  • Time to move! The seller may move out on the day of completion or beforehand – it’s a good idea to get yourself organised ahead of time so that you’re ready to go once you’ve exchanged, but be aware that sometimes paperwork can be delayed if there’s an issue with someone else in the chain. On completion day, you will be able to pick up the keys to your new place from the estate agent and start the celebrations!

The property and conveyancing team at Frances Lindsay & Co have over 50 years of experience helping individuals, couples and families move home in Maidenhead, Windsor, Marlow, Beaconsfield and the whole of the Thames Valley. Visit our website for a free online conveyancing quote, or get in touch for advice on selling and buying property, investments, leaseholds and rental, and commercial property.

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