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11th Apr 2022|Sales|

How to choose the right solicitor when moving house

Thinking about buying or selling a property? You might be thinking about How to choose the right solicitor when moving house too. Currently, it takes an average of three to four months to complete a property purchase. Without the right solicitor, you could be adding extra time to an already stressful situation.

Our Associate Director of Sales and Lettings, Stuart Macdiarmid, shares his top tips to find the right solicitor for your property sale in this blog.

What’s the difference between a solicitor and a conveyancer?

You may be wondering what the difference between a solicitor and a conveyancer is; Stuart is here to explain.

“A solicitor is a fully trained lawyer who can help with a range of legal issues,” he said, “whilst conveyancers offer fewer services and aren’t qualified lawyers but do specialise in property law.”

Conveyancers can and should be part of a recognised trade body such as the Council for License Conveyances.

Where can I find a solicitor?

Choosing the right solicitor can be the difference between completing or aborting the transaction. Stuart says, “Choosing a solicitor right at the start of your journey is recommended. You can be clear on the budget surrounding the buying or selling process.” He continued, “If you are selling your property, you can speed your transaction up by two weeks by choosing a solicitor immediately.”

One of Stuart’s best tips is to speak with your agent first to discover their experiences within the conveyancing process and see who they would recommend and who their clients have had good experiences with too. Most established agents will have a panel of recommended solicitors that understand both their clients and the local area too which can help.

After speaking to your agent, you should look for personal recommendations and reviews to find out if other sellers have had positive experiences. Stuart often advises contacting a range of solicitors for quotes to see what their communication is like, as this is where the transaction breaks down most often.

What should I look for in a solicitor to sell my home?

Working with the right solicitor to sell your home can make the whole process a lot smoother and easier, aside from the absolute musts’ which include qualifications and having the right recognised accreditations it’s also worth taking a look at any reviews or recommendations that they might have, happy home movers are a good sign that your chosen firm is doing a good job.

If you’re new to moving home it can be really helpful if your solicitor or conveyancer has online communications tools, like a client portal, this can help you to see in real time the status of your move.

In addition local knowledge and experience can also be helpful to keep your home move progressing well.

How much does it cost to sell my home?

Legal fees for selling a property can be significant; if you are just selling your property with no onward chain, you can expect to pay anywhere between £800 and £1,500. If you are buying and selling a property, this will likely cost between £2,500 and £3,500.

Stuart advises against selecting the cheapest solicitor on costs alone; “Finding the cheapest solicitor can often mean your service might be affected. They might be dealing with a higher volume of business, or there could be hidden additional fees that you haven’t accounted for.”

What will my Solicitor do when selling my home?

We all know that we need a solicitor or conveyancer when selling or buying a house, apartment, bungalow or even an investment property but what they actually do can feel like a bit of a mystery, after all it’s not an every day occurrence for most of us. So what should your Solicitor do?

  • Prepare and distribute any legal contracts
  • Request you mortgage settlement figure (if applicable)
  • Obtain title deeds from Land Registry
  • Help you to all the necessary legal documents including and Money Laundering regulations
  • Receive deposit funds and hold in secure accounts
  • Work with and negotiate on your behalf with the legal representatives of your buyer
  • Negotiate moving dates with your buyer
  • Approve final deed of transfer
  • Organise final accounts and settlement
  • Hand over title deeds
  • Work with your property agents

If you’re thinking about How to choose the right solicitor when moving house then we hope this has been helpful! As Stuart has said himself, buying and selling a property doesn’t need to be hard work. With excellent communication between you and your solicitor, your move will be speedy and stress-free.

If you would like to discuss how to sell your home, get in touch today.

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