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My husband and I are novices when it comes to buying a property. Within the 48 hours our solicitor has forwarded the sale agreement to sign with a detailed report in anticipation of exchanging contracts shortly. Newbury Mortgage Services have this evening contacted us to advise us that there is now an issue as our solicitor is not on their approved list of lawyers. Is this a problem?
If you are buying a property with the assistance of a mortgage it is usual for the purchaser's solicitors to also act for the purchaser's lender.
In order to act for a bank or building society a law firm has to be on that lender's conveyancing panel. An application has to be made by the law firm to the lender to become a member of the lender's panel and there are increasingly strict criteria which the firm has to satisfy and indeed some lenders now require their panel members to be part of the Law Society’s Conveyancing Accreditation Scheme.
Your property lawyers should contact Newbury Mortgage Services and see if they can apply for membership of the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel, but if that is not viable Newbury Mortgage Services will instruct their own lawyers to represent them. You are not legally obliged to appoint a law firm on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel as you are at liberty to use your preferred lawyers, in which case your legal fees may increase, and it will likely delay the transaction as you are adding another lawyer into the mix.
I am buying a brand new flat and my solicitor is informing me that she is duty bound to reveal incentives from the seller as her practice is on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel. I am under pressure to sign contracts and I dont want to prolong the conveyancing. is my lawyer taking the correct approach?
You should not exchange unless you have advised to do so by your lawyer. A precondition to being on the Newbury Mortgage Services approved panel is to comply with the CML Handbook requirements (last updated for this lender on Newbury Mortgage Services). The CML Conveyancing Handbook requires that your lawyer have the appropriate Disclosure of Incentive form completed by the developer and accepted by your lender.
Your search tool is useful but there are many lawyers listed near Hackney on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel. It would be a lot more helpful if you could recommend a specific firm on the Newbury Mortgage Services approved panel?
We do not recommend specific firms as the right firm for you depends on where your priorities lie. For example you may require a local firm with local knowledge or you might be looking for the low cost conveyancing. Before you appoint your lawyer we advise you to speak to two or three of the firms listed to gain comfort as to which one is right for you..
The solicitors that I recently instructed on my house acquisition in Brighton has without warning shut down. I only went with them because I had to have a solicitor on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel and my family lawyer was not. I gave them a cheque for £150 in advance. What are my options?
Assuming that you have an Estate Agent in the equation then let them know straight away so that they can let the sellers know that there may be a slight delay due to the problems encountered. Most sellers would be sympathetic and urge their lawyer to send a new set of papers to your new solicitors. You will need to appoint new lawyers that are on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel and notify the lender. If you have paid over any money it will hopefully be held by the SRA as money in an intervened firm's bank accounts is transferred to the SRA. Then, the SRA or the intervention agent looks at the intervened firm's accounts to work out who the money belongs to. To claim your money you will need to contact the SRA. If the SRA cannot return money you are owed from the firm's bank accounts, or if they can only return part of the money, you can apply to the Compensation Fund for a grant. Your new solicitors may be able to assist
Is it the case that all conveyancing solicitors on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel work on a no move no charge basis?
On the whole there are no requirements by lenders for their firms to operate on a no-sale-no-fee basis. There a small number of lenders who operate a very restricted conveyancing panel managed by a third party company (often termed in the industry as a ‘gatekeeper’). That third party may impose certain conditions such as non-sale-no fee on the panel firms. If you require this as a condition of your conveyancing then you should check with the conveyancing firm that this is part of their service
Is it the case that all solicitors on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel overseen by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority?
As solicitors, in order to be on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel they would need to be regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority. Many lenders do allow licenced conveyancers on their panel in which case such firms would be regulated by the Council of Licensed Conveyancers (CLC).
Last month we had a mortgage agreed in principle with Newbury Mortgage Services. Solicitors have been instructed? How long does it take for Newbury Mortgage Services to send the offer to our conveyancer
There is no definitive answer here. Have Newbury Mortgage Services conducted the valuation? Have you advised Newbury Mortgage Services as your lawyers details and checked that your lawyer is on the Newbury Mortgage Services conveyancing panel? It is not unusual for a mortgage offer to take a month to come through