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Masthaven Bank Conveyancing Panel : Questions and Answers
I am progressing with the sale of my flat and the EA has just telephoned to advise that the buyers are changing their solicitor. The reason given is that Masthaven Bank will only work with solicitors on their approved list. On what basis would a major lender only engage with certain lawyers?
Banks have always had panels of law firms they are willing to work with, but in the past few years big names such as Santander, have reviewed and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for more than 25 years.
Banks blame a rise in fraud by way of justification 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 hearing daily from firms 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.
We are approaching an exchange and my parents having transferred the 10% deposit to my lawyer. I am now advised that as the deposit has not come from me my lawyer needs to make a notification to my lender Masthaven Bank. I am advised that, being on the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel and acting on their behalf he must inform Masthaven Bank if the balance of the mortgage advance is coming from anyone other than me. I disclosed to the bank about my parent’s contribution when I applied for the mortgage so is it really necessary for him to raise this?
Your lawyer is obliged to check with Masthaven Bank to make sure that they are aware that the balance of the purchase price is not from your own funds. Your solicitor can only report this to Masthaven Bank if you agree, failing which, your lawyer must cease to continue acting.
I have been Googling for competitive conveyancing fees. Can I be confident that all the law firms that are identified on your directory are on the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel?
The solicitor and licensed conveyancing practices listed on our site have advised us that they are on the Masthaven Bank panel and agreed to advise us to take down their listing in the event of removal off of the Masthaven Bank panel. To date we have not been informed by either a lender or a member of the public that the data about a specific firm being on the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel is not accurate.
I am buying a right to buy flat and getting a mortgage with Masthaven Bank. Can I do my own conveyancing?
Leaving aside the complexities and merits of DIY conveyancing you will have to appoint a solicitor on the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel to look after their interests. Most people therefore find it easier to let the solicitor act for them and the lender. Furthermore there is minimal cost savings to made in you doing to conveyancing for yourself and another lawyer conducting the conveyancing for the lender. Please feel free to use the search tool to find a lawyer on the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel in your location.
Can you point me to a directory of Masthaven Bank panel conveyancers on the CML Handbook Website?
No. There is no such tool on the Council of Mortgage Lenders or Building Society Association websites. Very few lenders make their panel listings available online.
I had instructed online solicitors based in Cardiff who are on the Masthaven Bank solicitor panel. They are now charging me a separate fee of £135 for the legal aspects of the Masthaven Bank mortgage. Is this a supplemental conveyancing fee specified by Masthaven Bank?
Unfortunately, as long as it is in their Terms and Conditions or Quote then yes your solicitors can charge a fee for this. This fee is not set by Masthaven Bank but by your lawyers. Some firms on the Masthaven Bank will charge an ‘acting for lender’ fee and others do not.
Do most lenders operate their own panel of solicitors?
Many lenders do operate a restricted conveyancing panel but a lot of lenders allow any solicitors to join their panel so long as they meet their criteria. Each lender sets their own criteria. For example the Masthaven Bank conveyancing panel requirements are different to Masthaven Bank’s conveyancing panel requirements.