Conveyancing is the legal process for buying and selling a property. The legal process has been simplified as a result of technological advances made by the Land Registry. Approximately 95% of all properties are now registered at the Land Registry and so copies of Title Deeds can be obtained direct from the Land Registry and are public documents. This has made the process of conveyancing more straight forward as previously, a property that was not registered at the Land Registry contained complex documents known as Conveyances, Leases and Indentures which needed to be drafted by a specialist lawyer.
Whilst the process of conveyancing has been made simpler, you will still be required in the vast majority of instances, to be represented by a property lawyer in order to buy or sell your property. It is possible for a layman to undertake their own conveyancing but it is unlikely that the solicitor or Conveyancer on the other side of the transaction will work with you for a multitude of reasons. Laymen are uninsured so they cannot provide the necessary undertakings to repay mortgages and other costs upon completion of the property transaction. Laymen are not bound by the professional rules and regulations under which solicitors and Licensed Conveyancers are governed and regulated; hence solicitors and Conveyancers do not like working with laymen.
It is important that you choose the correct Conveyancer to act on your behalf. The cost of instructing a property lawyer to act on your behalf has become far more competitive over recent years, given the changes at the Land Registry and efficiencies that lawyers have made in speeding up the conveyancing process.
When choosing a property lawyer your choice should not simply be about the cost of the conveyancing service. The actual service that you will be provided with will be of paramount importance. It is vitally important that you are able to contact your Conveyancer over the telephone and by email, and that you have one point of contact within the conveyancing organisation who can provide you with the comfort, advice and support that you need.
Property conveyancing can sometimes be a stressful process as buying a property can inevitably be one of the largest financial transactions that you will make in your lifetime. It is vitally important therefore that you choose the correct Conveyancer to act on your behalf.
In general terms there are two different types of property lawyer that you can choose to conduct your conveyancing transaction. Solicitors are regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority and may undertake other types of work such as matrimonial work or litigation as well as conveyancing. A solicitor in general practice may need to attend at Court and at other appointments which may frustrate communication throughout the conveyancing process.
Licensed Conveyancers are specialist property lawyers who are regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers. All work undertaken by Licensed Conveyancers is office based and hence effective communication should not prove to be a problem.
Both Licensed Conveyancers and solicitors operate in various different shapes and sizes. The sole principle acts on his own, with one or two members of staff in support. Multi partner practices often have teams of Conveyancers acting with efficient case management systems, online case tracking and sophisticated communication facilities.
Certain lenders may now insist that they are separately represented in the event that you are securing a mortgage on your property. Lenders such as HSBC currently insist that you instruct their solicitors to act on their behalf in securing the mortgage in their favour. This can lead to almost double the costs of the conveyancing transaction and will invariably delay your property transaction. In the vast majority of instances in England and Wales the lender will let you choose the Conveyancer of your choice, so long as that Conveyancer is on the mortgage lender’s legal panel they will be able to act for both the mortgage lender and yourself throughout the course of your property transaction.