I am in the process of selling my home in North Somerset and the EA has just telephoned to warn that the purchasers are appointing a new property lawyer. I am told that this is due to the fact that the mortgage company will only deal with solicitors on their conveyancing panel. Why would a leading lender only engage with certain law firms rather the firm that they want to appoint for their conveyancing in North Somerset ?
Lenders have always had panels of law firms that can act for them, but in recent years big names such as HSBC, have considered and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for over 25 years.
Banks point to the increase in fraud by way of justification for the pruning – criteria have been narrowed as a smaller panel is easier to monitor. Banks tend not to disclose how many solicitors have been dropped, claiming the information is commercially sensitive, but the Law Society says it is hearing daily from firms that have been removed from panels. Some do not even realise they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyers' case. The purchasers are unlikely to have any sway in the decision.
We are about to exchange on the purchase of a property in North Somerset but as a consequence of damage from the recent storms I have managed to agree recompense from the vendor of £3k taking the form of a adjustment in the price. I had intended this to be addressed as part of the conveyancing process yet TSB will not permit this. Why were they notified?
The lawyer being on a TSB approved list is duty bound to advise TSB of any variations to the sale price. If you were to refuse your lawyer to notify the reduction to TSB then they would have to discontinue acting for you. In addition, TSB and you would have to appoint a new conveyancing practitioner for your conveyancing in North Somerset.
We are buying a 3 bedroom semi in North Somerset. The intention is to an extension at the rear at the property.Will the conveyancing process include checks to determine if these alterations are permitted?
Your solicitor will review the registered title as conveyancing in North Somerset will sometimes reveal restrictions in the title documents which prevent categories of changes or necessitated the consent of a 3rd party. Many extensions need local authority planning consent and approval under the building regulations. Many locations are designated conservation areas and special planning restrictions apply which often prevent or affect extensions. You should check these issues with a surveyor before you commit yourself to a purchase.
I can not fathom if my lender requires a lease extension. I have called into my local North Somerset bank branch on numerous occasions and was told it does not impact the mortgage offer and they would lend. My North Somerset conveyancing solicitor - who is on the bank conveyancing panel- called to say that they would not lend in accordance with their published requirements. I have no idea who is right.
Your solicitor has to comply with the CML Handbook section two specifications for your bank. Unless your lawyer obtains specific confirmation in writing that the mortgage company will go ahead, your lawyer has no choice but to refrain from exchanging contract and committing you to the purchase. We would suggest that you ask the mortgage company to contact your lawyer in writing confirming that they will accept the number of years remaining.
TSB have agreed my home loan in principle, my offer on a house in North Somerset has been agreed to, what are the next steps?
Your property agent will wish to know who your solicitors are (ensure that the property lawyers are on the lender’s approved list). Contact TSB or the financial adviser and finish off any relevant paperwork. TSB will instruct a valuer who will get in contact with the selling agent or vendor to book a slot for the valuation to occur. Once conducted (assuming no problems) it takes about a week for the mortgage offer to be issued. TSB will issue the offer to you and your conveyancers. The transaction will then take it’s course according the nature and complexity of the conveyancing in North Somerset.
My father-in-law has encouraged me to use his conveyancers in North Somerset. Should I find my own solicitor?
There are no two ways about it it’s preferable to find a conveyancing lawyer is to get guidance from friends or relatives who have previously instructed the firm that you are contemplating using.
I have miscalculated my finances and am a couple of thousand pounds short a 10% deposit on my apartment purchase in North Somerset , but I still want to proceed. What can I do?
One option is to try and agree a lesser deposit. Most sellers will agree to a smaller deposit or even no deposit for a first time buyer or 100% mortgage. Be aware though that if you fail to complete you will still need to hand over a minimum of 10% of the purchase price regardless of how much deposit was agreed.
You can also agree a simultaneous exchange and completion as no deposit is required for this however neither party will be tied in until completion actually takes place and it can be risky if sellers change their mind at the last moment