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I am progressing with the sale of my maisonette and the EA has just texted me to say that the buyers are appointing a new conveyancer. The reason given is that LiveMore will only work with property lawyers on their approved list. Why would a big named lender only work with certain solicitors?
Banks have always had panels of law firms they are willing to work with, but in the past few years big names such as Lloyds Banking Group, have reviewed and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for decades.
Lenders blame a rise in fraud as the reason for the cull – criteria have been tightened and a smaller panel should be 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 says it is being contacted daily by practices that have been removed from panels, or have other concerns about them. Some do not even realise they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyer’s case. Your purchasers are unlikely to have any sway in the decision.
My conveyancer has identified an inconsistency between the surveyor’s assumptions in LiveMore’s home valuation report and what is revealed within the title deeds. My solicitor has advised that as he is on the LiveMore conveyancing panel he is obliged to ensure that the bank is OK with this discrepancy and is content go ahead. Is my solicitor’s stance legitimate?
A precondition to being on the LiveMore approved panel is to comply with the CML Handbook requirements (last updated for this lender on LiveMore) which do require that your lawyer disclose any incorrect assumptions in the lender’s valuation report and the legal papers. Should you refuse to allow your lawyer to make the appropriate notification then your lawyer will have no choice but to discontinue acting for both parties.
Having used your search tool I can't find the lawyer I was hoping to instruct as being on the LiveMore conveyancing panel. My lawyer has said that they are on the LiveMore approved panel. How can I be sure given that they are not listed on your directory?
Not all firms are yet listed on our lender panel search tool which is still relatively new. Law firms are listing on a daily basis and it is probably the case that your lawyer is on the LiveMore conveyancing lawyer and you should probably take them at their word. Please do feel free to suggest that they completing their listing on our site as it would only cost them £1 a month to list themselves as being on the LiveMore solicitor panel.
I was supposed to complete on my flat two days ago. My lawyer’s firm is on the LiveMore solicitors panel but has changed address in the past couple of months and had not advised LiveMore of their new address. LiveMore has locked down the release of mortgage funds until such time as their systems are up to date with the correct details.
This is as unusual as it is unlucky. Most lender Terms of Conveyancing Panel Appointment specifically oblige the solicitor to inform the lender of an address change. Your solicitor needs to treat this with the utmost urgency. Do speak with or register your concern with the senior partner (assuming he or she is not your direct lawyer). Most lenders would be reasonable in this situation and expedite the resolution of this issue. It may be prudent to enlist the help of your local LiveMore branch or your mortgage broker to see if they can help.
When it comes to lenders such as LiveMore do lawyers have to be pay a fee to be on the conveyancing panel?
We are not aware of any lender fees to be on their panel although some do charge an administration charge to deal with the processing of the conveyancing panel application.
I'm in the throws of looking at houses and now considering a potential offer. Is it premature to have a solicitor in place? I I am planning to take a mortgage with LiveMore
You should start obtaining conveyancing quotes from solicitors ASAP. Once you decide who you want to use and once your offer is accepted you can instruct them to work for you and pass their details on the the estate agent. As you are getting a mortgage with LiveMore , ask your prospective lawyers check they are on the LiveMore conveyancing panel otherwise they can't do the mortgage legal work.
After much negotiation I have agreed a price on a house. My mortgage broker pressured me to appoint their lawyers I paid an upfront payment of 225. Soon after the conveyancers contacted me sheepishly admitting that they were not on the LiveMore 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 LiveMore 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.