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Find a Chatteris Conveyancing Solictior on Your Lender’s Panel

Ready to buy a new home in Chatteris? Failing to check that a lawyer is on your lender’s list of approved solicitors can put your Chatteris home move at risk of delay or failure.

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Recently asked questions about conveyancing in Chatteris

How up to date is your search tool for Chatteris conveyancing solicitors on the Nationwide conveyancing panel? Do Nationwide send you an updated list?

Chatteris conveyancing firms themselves provide us confirmation that they are on the Nationwide conveyancing panel as opposed to being supplied with a list from Nationwide directly.

I am about to put an offer on a leasehold apartment in Chatteris. The property agents say that it is usual for flats in Chatteris to have less than 75 years left on the lease. I am obtaining a loan with Nationwide Building Society. Will the property be mortgageable given that the lease has 70 years to go.

Most leasehold conveyancing experts should be able to deal with a lease extension. if you are obtaining a mortgage then your lender may insist that the lease be extended before competition. Nationwide Building Society have specific requirements as set out in the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook in relation to minimum unexpired lease terms. As of 12/7/2021 the requirements read as follows :

- Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years.
- There must be at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term (regardless of the length of lease at the start).

Where the unexpired lease term is different to that recorded on the mortgage offer, the following clarifies if we need to be informed:

Second hand property:
- If the unexpired lease term on the offer is 85 years or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 85 years
- if the unexpired lease term on the offer is less than 85 years – advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported
- For equity share applications - advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer

New build property:
- If the unexpired lease term stated on the offer is 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house) or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house)
- For equity share applications - always advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer

Lease terms such as ground rent and event fees must be reasonable at all times during the term of the lease and adhere to our requirements below. If you’re unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable or onerous, please refer the details to us in plain English for Valuer consideration. If the potentially onerous terms are in relation to the ground rent please include the current ground rent figure per annum, how often it will be reviewed and the price structure it will be reviewed against. See the guidance below.

SECOND HAND PROPERTIES

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined):
- Unexpired lease term less than 55 years
- Less than 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term
- Ground Rent greater than 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent doubles less than every 20 years (e.g. doubles every 5, 10 or 15 years) - acceptable if doubles every 20 years or more
- Ground Rent is compounded RPI
- Ground Rent review period is less than or equal to 5 years

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Unexpired lease term is 55 to 85 years
- Ground Rent greater than 0.1% and less than or equal to 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to any indices greater than RPI
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building*
- Ground Rent review period is greater than 5 and less than 10 years
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial, etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 0.5% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything that appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than 85 years
- Ground Rent less than or equal to 0.1% of the property value
- Ground Rent review period greater than or equal to 10 years
- Ground Rent escalation less than or equal to RPI

NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions)

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined)
- Unexpired lease term less than 125 years on a new build flat or less than 250 years on a new build house (does not apply to Shared Ownership)
- Starting Ground Rent greater than 0.1% of the property value
- Ground Rent review period less than or equal to every 5 years
- Ground Rent doubles less than every 20 years (e.g. doubles every 5, 10 or 15 years) - acceptable if doubles every 20 years or more
- Ground Rent is compounded RPI

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Ground Rent is linked to any indices greater than RPI
- Ground Rent is linked to the value of the building*
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 0.5% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything else appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than or equal to 125 years on a new build flat or greater than or equal to 250 years on a new build house
- Starting Ground Rent less than or equal to 0.1% of the property value
- Ground Rent review period greater than 5 years
- Ground Rent escalation less than or equal to RPI

* Where the Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building, please provide the following:
- How is the value of the block/unit currently calculated and if the assessment relates to the block(s), how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned per property?
- The current valuation and Ground Rent for each unit
- What is the mechanism for future valuations of the block and how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned?
- What is the right of appeal? And is this a documented process within the lease?
- Who bears the cost of the valuation (and appeal) process?
- Confirmation the review period is not less than twenty years.

When it comes to mortgage companies such as UBS, do Chatteris solicitors have to pay a yearly amount to be on the conveyancing panel?

We are not aware of any mortgage company fees to register on their panel, although some do levy an administration charge to deal with the processing of the conveyancing panel application.

We expect to receive a OIP from Lloyds this week so we know how much we could potentially offer as otherwise we are dependent on web based calculators (which aren't taking into account credit checks etc). Do Lloyds recommend any Chatteris solicitors on the Lloyds conveyancing panel, or is it better to find our own lawyer?

You will need to appoint Chatteris solicitors independently although you'll need to choose one on the Lloyds conveyancing panel. The solicitor represents both you and Lloyds through the process.

The formalities of my remortgage has taken place for my property in Chatteris. Conveyancing was a necessary evil but I feel I should register my dissatisfaction about the lender. Who do I contact should I wish to lodge a complaint?

Most lenders have complaints procedures. Your first point of contact should be one of the lender’s branches or the Customer Services Department at head office. We understand that complaints to a lender are sorted out effectively and efficiently. If you feel the matter is not resolved you can write to Financial Ombudsman Service who will take matters further.

I am purchasing my first flat in Chatteris with a loan from Platform Home Loans Ltd. The developers refused to budge the price so I negotiated 6k of extras instead. The property agent told me not disclose to my solicitor about the deal as it would adversely affect my loan with Platform Home Loans Ltd. Should I keep quiet?.

All lenders require a Disclosure of Incentives Form from the developer of any new build, converted or renovated property, It is available online from the Lenders’ Handbook page on the CML website. CML form is completed and handed to the lender's surveyor when the inspection is done.

Lenders have different policies on incentives. Some accept none at all, cash or physical, while others will accept cash incentives up to 5%.

Hard to understand why the representative of a builder would be suggesting you withold information from a solicitor when all this will be clearly visible on forms the builder has to supply to its solicitor, the buyer's solicitor and the surveyor.

My step-son is embarking on her first house purchase, the home loan was agreed last week in principle. One the offer was accepted on flat we called the bank to go forward with his. We were very surprised to hear that banks do not accept all conveyancer, they must be on their panel, is this legal?

Mortgage Companies tend to imposes restrictions either the type or the number of conveyancing firms on their approved list of lawyers. Typical examples of such restriction(s) being that a firm must have two or more partners. In addition to restricting the type of firm, some have decided to limit the number of firms they use to represent them. You should note that lenders have no responsibility for the quality of advice provided by any Chatteris lawyer on their panel. Mortgage fraud was a key driver in the rationalisation of conveyancing panels a few years ago and whilst there are differing views about the extent of solicitor involvement in some of that fraud. Statistics from the Land Registry reveal that thousands of law firms only carry out one or two conveyances a year. Those supporting conveyancing panel cuts ask why law firms should have the right to be on a Lender panel when clearly, conveyancing is not their speciality. To put it another way; would you want a conveyancing solicitor to represent you if you were charged with a crime? Probably not.

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