Me and my wife are purchasing a ground floor flat in Canterbury. My Conveyancer is not on the mortgage company approved panel. Am I still permitted to retain my Canterbury conveyancing solicitor even though they are not on the mortgage company panel of approved conveyancing solicitors?
You must have a conveyancing practitioner to deal with the formalities when you need a mortgage to buy your property. They will conduct all the relevant legal checks on the property, ensuring that you’re registered as proprietor and ensure that all the required mortgage documentation is in order. One may instruct a Canterbury conveyancer of your choosing. However, if the property lawyer appointed is not a member of the mortgage company approved list supplemental fees will be incurred as separate legal representation will be need by the bank. Lender panel applications may be submitted, so if your solicitor has not in the past applied for membership they should take the chance to apply.
The sellers of the property we are purchasing have appointed a conveyancing firm in Canterbury who has insisted on a preliminary contract with a deposit two thousand pounds. Is it wise to enter into such agreements?
This type of agreement isn't frequently used in Canterbury, conveyancers are not keen on them as they divert attention from the main conveyancing focus and if you end up losing your deposit then the lawyer is left exposed. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that just because the vendor has entered into a lock out contract they will sell to you. They may be in contravention of the agreement if they receive a large enough offer to do so because a wronged buyer with the benefit of a exclusivitycontract will still be legally obliged to show losses as a consequence of the breach and this may not equate the financial benefit that your seller may obtain by reneging on the contract, no matter how morally shameful that may be.
Do lenders provide you with an approved list of Canterbury conveyancing solicitors? How do you know who is on the Santander conveyancing panel?
Canterbury conveyancing firms themselves provide us confirmation that they are on the Santander conveyancing panel as opposed to being supplied with a list from Santander directly.
Having spent time looking at moneysavingexpert.com for an online lawyer in Canterbury, many say that I must look for a CQS kitemarked solicitor. Can you explain what CQS is?
Canterbury Conveyancing Quality Scheme practices have been granted certification by the law Society The Law Society created CQS to promote high standards in the home legal process. CQS enables home movers to identify practices that provide a quality residential conveyancing. Canterbury is one of locations in England and Wales in which accredited firms have offices. The scheme obliges practices to undergo a strict assessment, compulsory training, self-reporting, spot checks and yearly assessments in order to maintain CQS status. It is available to solicitors and not licensed conveyancers and has the support of the Council of Mortgage Lenders.
Is it the case that all Canterbury solicitor firms on the Principality conveyancing panel are overseen by the SRA?
As solicitors, in order to be on the Principality conveyancing panel they would need to be regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority. The majority of mortgage companies do allow licenced conveyancers on their panel and in that case the organisation would be governed by the CLC.
We expect to receive a DIP from Yorkshire BS this week so we know how much we could potentially offer as otherwise we are dependent on web based calculators (which aren't taking into account credit checks etc). Do Yorkshire BS recommend any Canterbury solicitors on the Yorkshire BS conveyancing panel, or is it better to find our own lawyer?
You will need to appoint Canterbury solicitors independently although you'll need to choose one on the Yorkshire BS conveyancing panel. The solicitor represents both you and Yorkshire BS through the process.
I currently have a mortgage with Santander for my property in Canterbury. Conveyancing was finalised months ago. If I am intending to rent out the flat and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a BTL mortgage or inform Santander?
Your original mortgage agreement with Santander will provide that you need their approval before letting out your property as this is likely to be a breach of Santander’s mortgage conditions. It may be that Santander will allow you to rent out your former home without needing to switch to a buy-to-let mortgage but some lenders will add a surcharge to your mortgage rate to reflect the higher risk. You should contact Santander directly. It should not be necessary to do this via a Santander conveyancing panel lawyer.
I have been sourcing a conveyancing solicitor in Canterbury for my house move. Is it possible to review a firm’s complaints history with the legal regulator?
One may see documented Solicitor Regulator Association (SRA) decisions stemming from inquisitions from 2008 onwards. Go to Check a solicitor's record. For information about the period before 1 January 2008, or to check a firm's record, phone 0870 606 2555, 08.00 - 18.00 Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and 09.30 - 18.00 Tuesday. For callers outside the UK, use +44 (0)121 329 6800. The SRA could recorded call for training requirements.