Our solicitor has discovered a a problem with the lease for the apartment we are purchasing in Smithfield. The other side have put forward title insurance as a solution. We are content with insurance and will pay for it. Our solicitor has advised that he must ensure that the bank is willing to move forward with this solution. Who is the client here, us or the lender?
The short answer to your last question is that, notwithstanding the potential for a conflict of interest, you and the lender are the client. Your property lawyer must comply with the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook specifications. The UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook conditions require your lawyer to disclose issues such as defects with the lease so that the mortgage company can be afforded the opportunity to check with their valuer as to the extent that the value of the property is affected. Should you refuse to allow your lawyer to make the appropriate notification then your conveyancing practitioner will have no choice but to discontinue acting for you.
My Conveyancer in Smithfield has never been on on the The Royal Bank of Scotland Conveyancing Panel. Can I still use my family solicitor notwithstanding that they are excluded from the The Royal Bank of Scotland list of approved lawyers?
Your options are as follows:
- Complete the purchase with your existing Smithfield lawyers but The Royal Bank of Scotland will need to instruct a solicitor on their panel. This will inevitably rack up the total conveyancing fees and cause delays.
- Choose an alternative practitioner to to deal with the purchase, remembering to check they are on the The Royal Bank of Scotland panel
I am currently in the process of buying my council flat in Smithfield. I have a mortgage agreed with Co-operative. Conveyancing is new to me. Can I proceed without a solicitor easily? I think we can but we keep being told I should use one. Any advice?
It is not advisable to proceed with a house purchase without a solicitor. The council's solicitor are not acting for you. You need a solicitor for a number reasons. One of which is to verify what plans the Council have for repairs and refurbishment for the next five years. Many leaseholders have been stung for contributions of thousands of pounds. In any event, if you are getting a mortgage with Co-operative, you will need to appoint a solicitor on the Co-operative conveyancing panel.
I currently have a mortgage with TSB for my property in Smithfield. Conveyancing has been completed a year ago. If I am intending to rent out my property and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a buy-to-let mortgage or inform TSB?
TSB must be informed of your intention before letting out your property as this is likely to be a breach of TSB’s mortgage conditions. It may be that TSB will permit you to let out your former home without needing to switch to a buy-to-let mortgage but some lenders will add a surcharge to your mortgage rate to reflect the higher risk. You should contact TSB directly. It should not be necessary to do this via a TSB conveyancing panel firm.
I recently had an offer agreed on a house in Smithfield. My financial adviser pressured me to appoint their conveyancing practitioner. I paid an upfront payment of £150. A couple of days later, the conveyancer called me embarrassingly acknowledging that they were not on the Principality conveyancing panel. Am I right in thinking that I should be due a refund?
You should be able to recover this from the law firm if they were not on the Principality panel. They should have asked at the outset which lender you were obtaining a mortgage with. An important lesson to readers of this site is to check that the lawyers are on the appropriate lender panel.
Is it necessary to pay for insurance to protect me from financial exposure to chancel repairs when purchasing a property in Smithfield?
Unless a prior purchase of the property completed after 12 October 2013 you can take it that conveyancing practitioners conducting conveyancing in Smithfield to remain recommending a chancel search and or insurance against a claim.
I've recently found out that there is a flying freehold issue on a house I put an offer in last month in what should have been a simple, chain free conveyancing. Smithfield is the location of the property. What do you suggest?
Flying freeholds in Smithfield are not the norm but are more likely to exist in relation to terraced houses. Even where you use a solicitor outside Smithfield you must be sure that your lawyer goes through the deeds very carefully. Your mortgage company may require your conveyancing solicitor to take out an indemnity policy. Some of the more diligent conveyancing solicitors in Smithfield may decide that this is not enough and that the deeds be re-written to give you the most up to date legal protection. If so, the next door neighbour also had to sign up to the revised deeds.It is possible that your lender will not accept the situation so the sooner you find out the better. You should also check with your insurance broker as to whether they will insure a flying freehold property.