The quality conveyancer

11 Apr 2013

For most people, buying a house is the most substantial financial investment they will ever make – and probably one of the most complex (not to mention stressful) processes. That is why it pays to do things properly and avoid poorly trained conveyancers and those who are junior, but instead, engage a conveyancing solicitor or other qualified conveyancer (e.g. chartered legal executive) who will guide the client safely through the property buying and selling minefield, help to safeguard their interests and ensure that the conveyancing process runs smoothly and more quickly.

You only need to Google ‘cheap conveyancing’ to see who to avoid. There are too many conveyancing businesses whose dominant message is how “cheap” they are. Quality is a poor second place. Not a ringing endorsement to say the least. There are also some conveyancing firms who may provide their conveyancing services on a “No Completion – No Fee” basis.

True, this can benefit the buyer or seller because property transactions are highly unpredictable, and if the transaction does not go through for any reason, the client will not end up out of pocket.

However, a decision should not be made based solely on cost, as these “No Completion – No Fee” businesses may also be the busiest and have the least amount of time to dedicate to the case, and so have done very little to have to write off anyway – and such sparse attention may actually slow the transaction considerably and cost you far more in the long term.

Good conveyancers, however, are certainly listed on The Law Society or Council of Legal Executives, and carry professional insurance of at least £1m.

However, the cheapest price will always remain a great temptation for some – whatever the long term cost –  as moving home can be a costly business – even switching mortgage lenders can incur financial penalties, adding to the stress that is already involved. Many people therefore try to cut these costs by sourcing a cheap conveyancing solicitor to provide them with cheap conveyancing services.

However, in our experience, the clue is in the title: ‘cheap’. Cheap conveyancing all too often we hear of hidden charges that are suddenly sprung on the client when it is too late for them to extricate themselves from the contract. Cheap prices also seem to reflect the quality of service that can be expected; again, the clue is in the title.

Instead, seek out a conveyancing solicitor who shouts about their own quality, and therefore the quality you will benefit from; that meets and exceeds your expectations. Do they demonstrate their own ability – perhaps their website with their own legal articles. Or do they in fact hide who their individual conveyancers actually are? Many firms will promote their quality through biographies of their conveyancers – which makes them fully accountable. They even offer their personal email and telephone numbers making them totally contactable too.

In the end, the level of legal fee directly reflects the conveyancing solicitors’  level of commitment to you; and if not too cheap – rather, ‘competitively affordable’ – this will ensure that the standard of service you can expect is in no way compromised.