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Choosing the Right Conveyancing Solicitor; Do your Research

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This article has been submitted by Bowden Jones Solicitors

Buying or selling a house involves copious amount of paperwork, a significant amount of time and a fair bit of expense. But finding the right solicitor to coordinate the property transfer and keep on top of the details can take some of the burden from your shoulders.

The key to ensuring to finding the right people to work with is to take your time and weigh up the costs, any recommendations you get and the service you are likely to receive. First of all, it helps to understand exactly what a conveyancer or solicitor will do for you.

Conveyancing in a nutshell

The conveyancing process is essentially the legal transfer of a property from a seller to a buyer. This may sound simple, but it means a solicitor or conveyancer needs to be on the ball.

They will run searches, such as a Local Authority Search and Water Authority Search, handle the contracts, deal with the Land Registry, transfer funds and liaise with all the relevant parties, including you.

A good conveyancer will correctly complete all the paperwork on time, have transparent costs and be easily contactable in a way that suits you.

A recommendation on where to start

Getting recommendations is a great way to narrow down your search and draw up a shortlist. Family and friends are a logical source as they can give you a first-hand view of the service they got.

Recommendations will also be offered from other quarters. Your estate agent, for example, may refer you to a firm, but it may not be the best choice for you. Estate agents can receive hefty referral fees for recommending a practice, which will ultimately add to your conveyancing fees. A big fee may also mean that an agent recommends the firm that pays the most rather than the one that’s most suitable for you.

To weigh up if the firm is a good fit for you, ask your estate agent if they receive a referral fee, and if so, how much. This will help you to make a more informed choice.

Conveyancing costs

Another good way to split the competition is to get plenty of quotes and compare them like-for-like. However, as with most things in life, you are likely to get what you pay for.

When receiving a quote, make sure all costs are included.

Look local

If you want plenty of support throughout the process, it may be worth keeping your search to local firms.

Local firms tend to have a smaller conveyancing team and smaller client list, which means you can build a strong relationship with team members during the buying or selling process. This can make it easier to keep tabs on any progress and get questions answered. It’s also an advantage for the estate agent and mortgage lender, who will be regularly liaising with your conveyancer. Communication is likely to be far smoother if your conveyancer knows your details and circumstances at the drop of a hat.

Another advantage is that a locally-based firm will have a base near your current home. This will be convenient if you want to talk to someone face-to-face or if you have to drop off any documents.  In addition, local solicitors will be aware of the area and any problematic issues to look out for.

Lender friendly

Some lenders do compromise and accept firms that have CQS accreditation or a license. You can find out if your solicitor has CQS accreditation by checking out the Law Society Website .

Contact the Conveyancing Team at Bowden Jones Solicitors

If you require any conveyancing advice then please call our Conveyancing Team on 02920 484550 or visit our website