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Recently asked questions about conveyancing in Thornton Heath

Having sold my house in Thornton Heath last May but my buyer keeps SMS messaging daily to say their solicitor needs to hear from mine. What are the post completion sale formalities following completion?

Post completion of your house sale your conveyancer is committed to forward the transfer documentation and all of the paperwork to the purchaser's lawyers. If applicable, your solicitor must also confirm that the mortgage has been discharged to the buyers conveyancers. There is unlikely to be post completion formalities unique to conveyancing in Thornton Heath.

I am purchasing a property in Thornton Heath. A rare aspect is that the roof has a solar panel. Santander have issued a mortgage offer so presumably this is not a concern to them. Why is my solicitor raising questions about the panel?

Given that your lender is Santander your lawyer must check the formal instructions set out in Part 2 of UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook for Santander. The CML Handbook includes minimum conditions for solar panel roof-space leases, and conveyancers are required to report to Santander where a lease does not satisfy these provisions. The specifications relate to the installation of panels on properties countrywide and is not limited to Thornton Heath.

I have paid off my mortgage with Yorkshire BS. I assume I don't need a Thornton Heath conveyancing practitioner on the Yorkshire BS panel to discharge the mortgage at the Land Registry. Please confirm.

If you have finished paying off your Yorkshire 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 Yorkshire BS mortgage from the register. Yorkshire 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:

  1. but are not moving to another property
  2. where Yorkshire BS has sent the Land Registry the discharge electronically, and
  3. Yorkshire BS has instructed the Land Registry to do so
The Land Registry will send you a letter confirming that your Yorkshire BS mortgage has been paid off.

I have a mortgage with Bank of Ireland for my property in Thornton Heath. Conveyancing has been completed a year ago. In the event that I decide to rent out the flat and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a BTL mortgage or inform Bank of Ireland?

You must advise Bank of Ireland in advance of letting out your property as this is likely to be a breach of Bank of Ireland’s mortgage conditions. It may be that Bank of Ireland will allow you to rent 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 Bank of Ireland directly. It should not be necessary to do this via a Bank of Ireland conveyancing panel lawyer.

Should my lawyer be raising enquiries about flooding as part of the conveyancing in Thornton Heath.

The risk of flooding is if increasing concern for lawyers carrying out conveyancing in Thornton Heath. Plenty of people will acquire a house in Thornton Heath, completely expectant that at some time, it may be flooded. However, leaving to one side the physical damage, if a property is at risk of flooding, it may be difficult to obtain a mortgage, suitable building insurance, or dispose of the property. There are steps that can be taken as part of the conveyancing process to forewarn the buyer.

Lawyers are not qualified to offer advice on flood risk, but there are a numerous checks that may be carried out by the buyer or by their conveyancers which should give them a better appreciation of the risks in Thornton Heath. The conventional set of information sent to a purchaser’s conveyancer (where the Conveyancing Protocol is adopted) includes a usual question of the owner to find out whether the property has historically flooded. If flooding has previously occurred and is not disclosed by the vendor, then a purchaser could issue a compensation claim stemming from an inaccurate response. The purchaser’s conveyancers will also conduct an environmental report. This should indicate whether there is a recorded flood risk. If so, further investigations will need to be conducted.

How does conveyancing in Thornton Heath differ for new build properties?

Most buyers of new build premises in Thornton Heath come to us having been asked by the seller to sign contracts and commit to the purchase even before the property is constructed. This is because new home sellers in Thornton Heath typically purchase the real estate, plan the estate and want to get the plots sold off as they are building the properties. Buyers, therefore, will have to exchange contracts without actually seeing the house they are buying. To reduce the chances of losing the property, buyers should instruct property lawyers as soon as the property is reserved and mortgage applications should be submitted quickly. Due to the fact that it could be several months and even years between exchange of contracts and completion, the mortgage offer may need to be extended. It would be wise to use a lawyer who specialises in new build conveyancing especially if they are accustomed to new build conveyancing in Thornton Heath or who has acted in the same development.

Should I go with a Thornton Heath conveyancing solicitor in close proximity to the house I am purchasing? We have a good friend who can perform the legal work but they are based over three hundred kilometers away.

The primary upside of using a high street Thornton Heath conveyancing firm is that you can drop in to execute paperwork, present your identification documents and apply pressure on them if necessary. Having local Thornton Heath know how is a benefit. That being said it's more important to get someone that will do a good and efficient job. If if people you trust instructed your friend and on the whole were happy that should trump using an unfamiliar Thornton Heath conveyancing lawyer solely due to them being local.

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