I am nearing exchange of contracts for my home in Westbourne and the EA has just called to warn that the buyers are switching law firm. The excuse is that the mortgage company will only deal with property lawyers on their conveyancing panel. Why would a leading mortgage company only deal with certain lawyers rather the firm that they want to choose for their conveyancing in Westbourne ?
Banks have always had panels of law firms they are willing to work with, but in the last few years big names such as Lloyds Banking Group, have reviewed and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have represented them for over 25 years.
Lenders attribute this action to a rise in fraud as the reason for the reduction – criteria have been tightened as a smaller panel is easier to keep an eye on. No lender will say how many solicitors have been dropped, claiming the information is commercially sensitive, but the Law Society claims that it is being contacted daily by practices that have been removed from panels. Plenty of firms are unaware that they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyers' case. Your purchasers are unlikely to have any sway in the decision.
Are the BSA intent on creating a searchable register to to identify practices on the Melton Mowbray Building Society conveyancing panel for example in Westbourne?
We are not aware of any plans on the part of the BSA to develop such a register.
Should our solicitor be raising enquiries regarding flooding during the conveyancing in Westbourne.
Flooding is a growing risk for conveyancers conducting conveyancing in Westbourne. There are those who purchase a house in Westbourne, completely expectant that at some time, it may be flooded. However, leaving to one side the physical damage, where a house is at risk of flooding, it may be difficult to get a mortgage, adequate insurance cover, or sell the property. There are steps that can be taken during the course of a property purchase to forewarn the buyer.
Conveyancers are not qualified to offer advice on flood risk, but there are a number of searches that can be initiated by the buyer or by their lawyers which can give them a better appreciation of the risks in Westbourne. The standard completed inquiry forms sent to a purchaser’s lawyer (where the solicitors are adopting what is known as the Conveyancing Protocol) includes a usual question of the vendor to discover if the premises has suffered from flooding. If the premises has been flooded in past and is not notified by the owner, then a purchaser could bring a compensation claim stemming from an inaccurate answer. The buyer’s conveyancers may also carry out an enviro report. This will disclose if there is any known flood risk. If so, more detailed inquiries should be initiated.
I'm refinancing my primary property to a BTL loan with Leeds Building Society and I will use the ballance of the raised equity as a down payment on further house. The neighborhood we are looking at is Westbourne. Will your conveyancers be able to act for the two banks and tie in the conveyances?
Do use our comparison tool on this site to check that the lawyers are on the appropriate lender panels. Assuming that they are the solicitor will be able to connect the two deals but you should talk with you lawyer and communicate your expectations and needs.
All being well we will complete the disposal of our £275,000 maisonette in Westbourne next week. The managing agents has quoted £348 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Westbourne?
Westbourne conveyancing on leasehold flats often necessitates the buyer’s lawyer sending questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address these enquiries most will be content to do so. They may levy a reasonable charge for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some cases it is above £800. The management information fee invoiced by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of rights and obligations in relation to administration charges, without which the charge is technically not due. In reality you have little choice but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to complete the sale of your home.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Westbourne - Examples of Questions you should consider Prior to buying
How many of the leaseholders are in arrears for their service charge payments? For most Westbourne leaseholds the outlay for major works tend not to be incorporated into the maintenance charges, albeit that some managing agents in Westbourne ask tenants to pay into a sinking fund created for the specific intention of establishing a fund for larger repairs or maintenance.