What is Conveyancing?
Conveyancing, when related to the residential sale of a house, is the term used to describe all the legal and administration tasks involved in transferring a property from a vendor to a buyer.
The conveyancing process typically starts once a seller of a house has accepted an offer verbally from a buyer, at which point, both the seller and buyer will instruct their own solicitors or certified conveyancers to carry out the necessary processes. Conveyancers are also used when a property is being re-mortgaged.
Conveyancers And Conveyancing Lawyers
You would normally appoint one of three types of professionals to carry out conveyancing work for you. The first is a generalist solicitor, who covers conveyancing amongst a number of other services. The second is a solicitor solely specialising in conveyancing services. The third is a specialist conveyancer, an industry professional who is licenced and regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
It is legally possible to conduct your own conveyancing work; however, this rarely happens due to the specialist knowledge required, the labour-intensity of the tasks, and the issues that might arise with complex cases. Often mortgage providers will insist on the use of conveyancing professionals in order to protect ‘their’ investment, as mistakes made in the conveyancing process can lead to legal problems such as issues related to planning permission or disputes over boundaries.
What To Look For When Comparing Conveyancers
When appointing a conveyancer, it’s important to consider the following:
- Is your conveyancer a qualified conveyancing solicitor, or a licenced conveyancing professional? If so then they should be registered and regulated by either the SRA – Solicitors Regulation Authority (conveyancing solicitors) or the CLC – Council for Licenced Conveyancers (conveyancing professionals).
- What is the cost that you have been quoted? Prices can vary between conveyancers. Some conveyancers operate on a fixed fee basis; others on either a sliding scale or per-hour basis. Depending on the property and circumstances, you can expect to pay anything from £250 to £1500 for conveyancing work. By using Conveyancing Index, you can ensure that you get excellent value for money.
- What services does the conveyancer cover? You may receive a quote from a conveyancer for what seems like a very low price compared to other quotes. It’s important to always check what services are included in the quoted fee by way of an itemised list of disbursements. Sometimes conveyancing firms will hide that they haven’t included certain disbursements/searches, in order to make their fee look more competitive. Once you have signed, they then reveal that you have more to pay. Conveyancing Index always gives you an itemised list of the services offered with each quote, so that you can compare like for like.