I am selling my maisonette in Newbury and the estate agent has just e-mailed to advise that the purchasers are swapping property lawyer. The reason given is that the mortgage company will only engage with solicitors on their conveyancing panel. On what basis would a big named lender only work with certain law firms rather the firm that they want to choose for their conveyancing in Newbury ?
Banks have always had an approved set of law firms that can represent them, but in the last few years big names such as Lloyds Banking Group, have considered and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for many years.
Mortgage companies justify this action to a rise in fraud by way of justification for the cull – criteria have been narrowed as a smaller panel is 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 being contacted daily by practices that have been removed from panels. Some are unaware that they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyers' case. The buyers are not going to have any sway in the decision.
Our conveyancer has identified a a problem with the lease for the property we are purchasing in Newbury. The other side have offered defective title insurance as a workaround. We are happy with insurance and will cover the costs. Our conveyancer says that he must ensure that the bank is happy with this solution. Who is the client here, us or the mortgage company ?
Notwithstanding that you have a mortgage offer from the bank does not mean to say that the property will meet their requirements for the purposes of a mortgage. Your lawyer has to ensure that the lease has to comply with the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook specifications. You and the mortgage company are the client. These conveyancing instructions have to be complied with.
I have 70 years left on my lease and require a lease extension for my apartment in Newbury. Conveyancing solicitors on the Platform panel can deal with such extensions right?
Most leasehold conveyancing experts should be able to deal with a lease extension. if you are obtaining a mortgage then your lender may insist that the lease be extended before competition. Platform have specific requirements as set out in the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook in relation to minimum unexpired lease terms. As of 12/4/2021 the requirements read as follows :
I'm purchasing a new build house in Newbury with a mortgage from National Westminster Bank. The builders would not budge the amount so I negotiated five thousand pounds worth of additionals instead. The estate agent told me not to tell my solicitor about the extras as it will impact my mortgage with National Westminster Bank. Do I keep my lawyer in the dark?.
All lenders require a Disclosure of Incentives Form from the builder of any new build, converted or renovated property, It is available online from the Lenders’ Handbook page on the CML website. CML form is completed and handed to the lender's surveyor when the inspection is done.
Lenders have different policies on incentives. Some accept none at all, cash or physical, while others will accept cash incentives up to 5%.
Hard to understand why the representative of a builder would be suggesting you withold information from a solicitor when all this will be clearly visible on forms the builder has to supply to its solicitor, the buyer's solicitor and the surveyor.
Yesterday I discovered that there is a flying freehold element on a house I put an offer in two weeks back in what should have been a simple, no chain conveyancing. Newbury is the location of the property. Can you offer any opinion?
Flying freeholds in Newbury are not the norm but are more likely to exist in relation to terraced houses. Even where you use a solicitor outside Newbury you must be sure that your lawyer goes through the deeds thoroughly. Your bank may require your conveyancing solicitor to take out an indemnity policy. Some of the more diligent conveyancing solicitors in Newbury may determine that this is not enough and that the deeds be re-written to give you the most up to date legal protection. If so, the next door neighbour also had to sign up to the revised deeds.It is possible that your lender will not accept the situation so the sooner you find out the better. You should also check with your insurance broker as to whether they will insure a flying freehold premises.
Am I better off to instruct a Newbury conveyancing solicitor who is local to the property I am purchasing? An old friend can conduct the legal work but they are based over three hundred kilometers away.
The primary upside of using a local Newbury conveyancing practice is that you can pop in to sign documents, deliver your ID and apply pressure on them if necessary. They will also have local intelligence which is a bonus. However nothing is more important than finding someone that will do a good and efficient job. If other friends have used your friend and the majority were impressed that should trump using an unknown Newbury conveyancing solicitor just because they are based in the area.