My husband and I are acquiring a newly built apartment in Totland and my conveyancer is advising me that she has to the mortgage company to reveal incentives from the builder. I am nearing the developer’s deadline to exchange and I don't want to delay matters. Is my lawyer right?
You should not exchange unless you have been advised to do so by your conveyancer. A precondition to being on a lender panel is to comply with the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook requirements. The CML Conveyancing Handbook requires that your lawyer have the appropriate Disclosure of Incentive form completed by the developer and accepted by your lender.
Finally the sale completed on my house in Totland last February but the buyer keeps texting every few hours to moan that their solicitor needs to hear from mylawyer. What should my lawyer have done now that I have sold?
Post completion of your sale your conveyancer is obliged to deliver the transfer documentation and all supplemental paperwork to the buyer’s conveyancer. Depending on the transaction, your lawyer should also evidence that the home loan has been repaid to the buyers solicitors. There is unlikely to be post completion formalities just for conveyancing in Totland.
I can not work out if my bank obliges me to make sure the lease term for the flat is extended prior to the completion date. I have called into my local Totland building society branch on numerous occasions and was told it wasn't an issue and they would lend. My Totland conveyancing solicitor - who is on the mortgage company conveyancing panel- called and was told they refuse to lend in accordance with their UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook minimum lease term requirements. Who do I believe?
Your lawyer has to follow the CML Handbook Part 2 conditions for your bank. Unless your lawyer obtains specific confirmation in writing that the lender 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 bank to contact your lawyer in writing confirming that they will accept the number of years left on the lease.
I recently had an offer accepted on an apartment in Totland. My financial adviser suggested a lawyer. I paid an advanced payment of £150. A few days later, the conveyancer contacted me embarrassingly acknowledging that they were not on the Nationwide 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 Nationwide 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.
Having digested plenty of house buying guides, I note that they all recommend that you should get your house surveyed prior to buying it. When I asked my local Totland solicitor - who is on the Santander conveyancing panel - on this she said they don't do this and I need to contract an independent surveyor. Is that normal?
Santander will need an independent valuation of the property. Your lawyer will not arrange this. Usually Santander 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. Your conveyancing practitioner will not organise the survey but they may be able to put you in touch with a local one that they recommend. RICS offers a find a surveyor service (just google it) where you can search for a qualified surveyor by your Totland postcode. As you are getting a mortgage with Santander, you could contact them to see if they have a list of approved surveyors in Totland.
I am looking for a leasehold apartment up to £235,500 and identified one close by in Totland I like with open areas and station in the vicinity, the downside is that it only has 51 years on the lease. I can't really find anything else in Totland suitable, so just wondered if I would be making a grave error purchasing a short lease?
Should you require a mortgage that many years will likely be an issue. Reduce the offer by the amount the lease extension will cost if not already taken into account. If the existing proprietor has owned the premises for at least 2 years you may ask them to commence the lease extension formalities and pass it to you. An additional ninety years can be extended on to the current lease term with a zero ground rent applied. You should speak to your conveyancing solicitor concerning this.
Is it best to appoint a Totland conveyancing solicitor who is local to the property I am buying? I have an old university friend who can carry out the conveyancing but his firm is located 400kilometers away.
The primary upside of using a local Totland conveyancing practice is that you can attend the office to execute documents, hand in your identification documents and pester them where appropriate. They will also have local knowledge which is a benefit. However nothing is more important than finding someone that will do a good and efficient job. If you know people who instructed your friend and the majority were happy that must outweigh using an unknown Totland conveyancing lawyer solely due to them being Totland based.