Does My Conveyancer Need To Be Local?
It is not necessary to hire a solicitor or conveyancer that is local to you when buying or selling a property. Conveyancing largely follows the same set of processes no matter where in England and Wales your property is situated. Your solicitor will also handle your transaction by communicating with you over the phone, via email and post – it is therefore never necessary to need to visit their office in person.
How do I instruct a property solicitor?
It is recommended to instruct a property solicitor as early on in the process as possible. It is a good idea to instruct a solicitor before you are ready to put an offer in on a property. That way if your offer is accepted you are in the position to start the legal process of transferring ownership straight away.
Look to hire a solicitor that offers a fixed fee, no completion, no fee conveyancing service. That way should anything go wrong with transaction i.e. the seller decides at the last minute to take their property off the market, you will not have to pay any of the legal fees (minus third party disbursements).
Before you instruct a solicitor do your research, ask for recommendations from family and friends, along with reading reviews of their service from past clients online. Solicitors ate required by the SRA to upfront with their fees and will display their fee structure on their website or provide a conveyancing calculator to give you an estimated quote.
Once you are happy to instruct your chosen solicitor you can do so my calling the office direct, submitting an enquiry via their website or through engaging in a live chat.
What will happen once I have instructed a solicitor?
Once you have instructed a solicitor they will start the legal process of transferring the ownership of the property from seller to buyer. They will explain to you their terms of service and send out a contract for you to sign and return via post. It is also typical to pay 10% of the cost of their service upfront, or the cost of any third party disbursements, such as local authority searches.
Your solicitor will start the process by setting out their terms and conditions and fixed costs – which you will need to formally agree to. They will also verify your identity by obtaining a copy of your ID. Read our Complete Guide to the Conveyancing Process for more information.
How will I sign and return documents?
As it isn’t necessary for your conveyancing solicitor to be local to you this means that documentation will be sent to you via email and post. Most firms will send you prepaid envelopes to return signed important documentation. It may also be possible to sign and return some documentation online using e-sign.