Me and my partner are intending to buy a 2 bedroom apartment in Wellington with a mortgage. We like our Wellington lawyer, however the mortgage company advise she’s not on their "panel". It appears that we have little choice but to appoint one of the lender panel solicitors or keep our Wellington property lawyer as well as pay for one of their panel ones to represent them. This feels very unfair; are we not able to insist that the mortgage company use our Wellington solicitor ?
Unfortunately,no. Your mortgage offer is subject to its terms and conditions, one of which will be that lawyers will on the lender’s conveyancing panel. Until recently, most lenders had large numbers of law firms on their panels: a borrower could choose one for themselves, as long as it was on the lender's panel. The lender would then simply instruct the borrower's lawyers to act for the lender, too. You can use your lender's panel lawyers or you could borrow from another lender which does not restrict your choice. Another option that might be available is for your Wellington conveyancing lawyer to apply to be on the conveyancing panel.
I have been told that property searches are the number one cause of delay in Wellington house deals. Is this right?
The Council of Property Search Organisations (CoPSO) released conclusions of research by MoveWithUs that conveyancing searches do not figure within the top 10 causes of hindrances during the legal transfer of property. Local searches are not likely to feature in any slowing down conveyancing in Wellington.
The deeds to my property are lost. The solicitors who conducted the conveyancing in Wellington 10 years ago have long since closed. What are my next steps?
Nowadays there are copies made of almost everything, and your conveyancer should know exactly where to locate all the relevant documentation so you can buy or dispose of your property without any difficulty. Where copies can’t be found, your conveyancer can put in place insurance or indemnities protecting you against future claims on the premises.
How does conveyancing in Wellington differ for newly converted properties?
Most buyers of new build premises in Wellington come to us having been asked by the builder to sign contracts and commit to the purchase even before the premises is ready to move into. This is because house builders in Wellington tend to purchase the land, 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 used to new build conveyancing in Wellington or who has acted in the same development.
I opted to have a survey carried out on a property in Wellington before instructing conveyancers. I have been advised that there is a flying freehold aspect to the property. Our surveyor advised that some banks tend not issue a loan on this type of premises.
It depends who your proposed lender is. HSBC has different instructions from Halifax. If you contact us we can look into this further via the appropriate mortgage company. If you lender is happy to lend one our lawyers can help as they are accustomed to dealing with flying freeholds in Wellington. Conveyancing can be more complicated and therefore you should check with your conveyancing solicitor in Wellington to see if the conveyancing costs will increase in light of this.