My wife and I are buying a 1 bedroom apartment in Barnet with a mortgage. We wish to retain our Barnet lawyer, but the lender advise he's not on their "panel". It seems we have no choice but to appoint one of the bank panel solicitors or continue with our Barnet lawyer and pay for one of their panel lawyers to represent them. We feel that this is inequitable; are we not able to require that the mortgage company use our Barnet lawyer ?
No, not really. The mortgage offered to you is subject to its terms and conditions, one of which will be that lawyers will on the lender’s conveyancing panel. Until recently, most lenders had large numbers of law firms on their panels: a borrower could choose one for themselves, as long as it was on the lender's panel. The lender would then simply instruct the borrower's lawyers to act for the lender, too. You can use your lender's panel lawyers or you could borrow from another lender which does not restrict your choice. Another option that might be available is for your Barnet conveyancing lawyer to apply to be on the conveyancing panel.
We are buying a newly built apartment in Barnet and my conveyancer is informing me that she is duty bound to the bank to reveal incentives from the builder. The Estate Agents are hassling me to exchange and I don't want to delay the conveyancing. Is my lawyer right?
You should not exchange unless you have been advised to do so by your conveyancing practitioner. A precondition to being on a mortgage company panel is to comply with the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook requirements. The CML Conveyancing Handbook requires that your lawyer have the appropriate Disclosure of Incentive form completed by the developer and accepted by your lender.
I am aiming to move property in November. Should my conveyancing solicitor call the removal company on the completion day. Incidentally, can you put forward a removal company in Barnet. Conveyancing solicitor was found before I stumbled across this website.
On the day of completion you will need to collect the house keys from your estate agent however this should only be done once the sellers lawyers inform the agent that they have the completion monies and the keys can be collected. You can advise the removal company that they can start moving you in. As a matter of policy we do not suggest a particular removal company but can help you find a residential property solicitor in Barnet or a firm with expertise in conveyancing in Barnet.
We have a mortgage agreed in principle with HSBC. Barnet conveyancing lawyers are selected. How long does it take for HSBC to forward the offer to the solicitor?
There is no definitive answer here. Have HSBC conducted the survey? Have you informed HSBC as to your lawyers' details and checked that your lawyers are on the HSBC conveyancing panel? Sometimes it can take as long as six weeks for a mortgage offer to be issued.
I've digested plenty of mortgage guides, I note that they all recommend that you should get your house surveyed prior to buying it. When I asked my local Barnet solicitor - who is on the Leeds Building Society conveyancing panel - on this she said they don't do this and I need to contract an independent surveyor. Is that normal?
Leeds Building Society will need an independent valuation of the property. Your lawyer will not arrange this. Usually Leeds Building Society will appoint their own surveyor to do this, and you will have to pay for it. Remember that this is a valuation for mortgage purposes and not a survey. Your conveyancer will not organise the survey but they may be able to put you in touch with a local one that they recommend. RICS offers a find a surveyor service (just google it) where you can search for a qualified surveyor by your Barnet postcode. As you are getting a mortgage with Leeds Building Society, you could contact them to see if they have a list of approved surveyors in Barnet.
I am looking for a ground for flat up to £195,000 and identified one round the corner in Barnet I like with a park and railway links nearby, however it only has 49 years on the lease. There is not much else in Barnet in this price bracket, so just wondered if I would be making a mistake purchasing a lease with such few years left?
If you need a home loan the remaining unexpired lease term will be problematic. Reduce the price by the expected lease extension will cost if it has not already been discounted. If the existing proprietor has owned the property for a minimum of twenty four months you could ask them to start the process of the extension and then assign it to you. You can add 90 years to the existing lease term with a zero ground rent applied. You should speak to your conveyancing lawyer regarding this matter.
My conveyancers in Barnet have advised me that they can not locate my conveyancing file. To assist with my purchase I took out a mortgage with the mortgage company. Is it case that being on the mortgage company conveyancing panel they need to have retained the file for a prescribed period?
Different lenders have different requirements but many of the Terms and Conditions of Conveyancing Panel Appointment require the file to be held for a period of 6 years. That being said we have not seen a copy of the mortgage company Conveyancing Panel Terms. It might be worth you contacting the mortgage company directly.