Our frequently asked questions about conveyancing will provide you with detailed information about commonly used terms and the property buying and selling process.
Q. What is Conveyancing?
Conveyancing is the name of the legal process involved in the transfer of property ownership.
Q. How long does the Conveyancing for a normal sale or purchase take?
The usual length of time for a property sale or purchase to take, is around 4 – 8 weeks.
Q. Will I have to provide Identification?
Identification will be needed in order to complete either a sale or a purchase. This is to comply with Money Laundering Regulations, which stipulate that we must obtain evidence of a client’s identity. We will need, for each owner of the property, a valid passport as well as a recent utility bill.
Q. Can a solicitor act for the buyer and the seller of a property?
Yes, if the buyer and seller are established clients of the firm, blood relatives or represented by separate branches. Both the buyer and seller have to agree to the same solicitor acting. Sometimes a buyers’ mortgage lender will insist on separate representation. However, the same firm cannot act for both parties in any circumstances where there is a conflict of interest.
Q. Are there any hidden costs?
No, there are no hidden costs associated with our conveyancing service. We will provide you with a fixed legal fee to cover the work. We will only ever increase the fee, if, during the transaction, something comes to light which was unforeseen. If this did happen, we would discuss this with you before incurring extra charges.
Q. What is the difference between a Leasehold and Freehold Property?
With Freehold property you own the property and the land on which it is situated. With Leasehold property you own the property for a fixed term, but you do not own the land. You would usually pay an annual ground rent to the Freeholder and at the end of the term, the land reverts back to the Freeholder.
Q. What is the difference between an exchange of contracts and completion?
An exchange is when the buyer and seller enter into a legally binding agreement to buy and sell on a set date. Once an exchange has taken place, both parties are committed to the sale/purchase, and cannot pull out of the transaction without legal penalties. Exchange of contracts is also when the buyer must pay a deposit, usually 10%. Completion refers to the day on which all payments have been made/received, that the property is transferred from the seller to the buyer; the day that you move house.
Q. At what point will I get the keys to my new property?
You will be able to collect your keys from the Estate Agents on the day of completion. This is usually around 1 pm.
Q. What happens to deeds when purchasing a house?
Most properties are now registered at the Land Registry and the legal documents are held electronically by them. We will send you copies of the documents, and any other supporting documents once the application for registration has been completed. Any old deeds that are no longer needed to prove title to the property, would normally be sent to you.