My partner and I are only a couple days away from an exchange on a house in Machen and my parents have transferred the exchange deposit to my conveyancing practitioner. I am now informed that as the deposit has been sent from someone other than me my conveyancer needs to make a notification to my lender. Apparently, in also acting for the bank he must advise them that the balance of the purchase price is not just from me. I disclosed to the lender regarding my parents' contribution when I applied for the mortgage, so is it really appropriate for him to raise this?
Your solicitor is legally required to check with lender to make sure that they know that the balance of the purchase price is not from your own funds. The solicitor can only report this to your bank if you agree, failing which, your lawyer must cease to continue acting.
We are getting a further advance on our home loan from HSBC as we want to conduct improvements to our house in Machen. Do we need to appoint a local Machen solicitor on the HSBC conveyancing panel to deal with the legals?
HSBC would not normally require firms on their approved list of lawyers to handle such a matter. If they do require any legal work then you would need to ensure that such a lawyer was on the HSBC list.
I have paid off my mortgage with Coventry BS. I assume I don't need a Machen conveyancing practitioner on the Coventry BS panel to discharge the mortgage at the Land Registry. Please confirm.
If you have finished paying off your Coventry BS mortgage, they may send you evidence showing that you have paid it off. Alternatively they may notify the Land Registry directly. The Land Registry need to see this evidence before they will remove the Coventry BS mortgage from the register. Coventry BS, and any evidence they send you, will determine the action you need to take. In cases where no conveyancer is acting for you and you have paid off your mortgage:
- but are not moving to another property
- where Coventry BS has sent the Land Registry the discharge electronically, and
- Coventry BS has instructed the Land Registry to do so
Having read lots of mortgage guides, I note that it is considered advisable to get your house surveyed prior to buying it. When I asked my local Machen solicitor - who is on the Lloyds conveyancing panel - on this she said they don't do this and I need to contract an independent surveyor. Is that normal?
Lloyds will need an independent valuation of the property. Your lawyer will not arrange this. Usually Lloyds 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. You may wish to consider appointing your own Machen surveyor to carry out a survey or prepare a home buyers report on the property. It is up to you to satisfy yourself that the property is structurally sound before you buy it. If the survey or report reveals that building work is needed, you should tell your solicitor. You may wish to renegotiate with the seller.
A friend recommended that where I am purchasing in Machen I should carry out a Neighbourhood, Planning and Local Amenity Search. Can you explain what the purpose of this search is?
This is a search is sometimes quoted for as part of the standard Machen conveyancing searches. It is not a small report of more than thirty pages, listing and detailing important information about Machen around the property and the people living there. It includes an Aerial Photograph, Planning Applications, Land Use, Mobile Phone Masts, Rights of Way, the local Housing Market, Council Tax Banding, the demographics of People living in the area, the dominant type of Housing, the Average House Prices, Crime details, Machen Education with plans and statistics, Local Amenities and other useful data concerning Machen.
I am looking for a conveyancing solicitor in Machen for my purchase. Can I review a solicitor's record with the profession’s regulator?
You can search for published Solicitor Regulator Association (SRA) decisions stemming from inquisitions from 2008 onwards. Go to Check a solicitor's record. To find records Pre 2008, or to check a firm's record, ring 0870 606 2555, 08.00 - 18.00 any week day save for Tuesday when lines open at 9.30am. For callers outside the UK, use +44 (0)121 329 6800. The SRA could recorded call for training requirements.
What advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Machen conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Machen conveyancing firm) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Machen conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. The following questions could be useful:
How experienced is the practice with lease extension legislation? If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
I acquired a basement flat in Machen, conveyancing formalities finalised half a dozen years ago. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Corresponding properties in Machen with an extended lease are worth £211,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £45 per annum. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2088
With 67 years unexpired we estimate the premium for your lease extension to span between £10,500 and £12,000 plus plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.
The figure above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to advice on a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed investigations. Do not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be additional issues that need to be considered and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not take any other action placing reliance on this information before getting professional advice.