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Most house moves involve a big change in the circumstances of a persons life. There may be a new job, relocation, financial reasons, additions to the family, the need for a bigger or smaller place to live or any number of reasons that make people decide that they need to buy or sell. Lots of these issues are stressful in themselves and so the last thing anybody needs at such a time is extra pressure caused by the actual legal process of making the move happen.
This is where the Conveyancer comes in! Who is a Conveyancer? Where do I find them? How do you choose one? Online Conveyancing or not? These are all great questions to ask. Getting an online conveyancing quote is a fantastic way to get easy access to the right expertise at the right price for your requirements. But how do you go about identifying the right Conveyancer for you?
It may seem a daunting prospect and there is a lot of information out there both on the internet and offline. Getting the right information and making an informed decision is the only way to cut through the white noise and settle on what is best for you.
Are Conveyancers all the same?
The short answer is No. There are a number of varieties of legal persons carrying out Conveyancing work. There are qualified Solicitors registered with the Law Society and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority that undertake Conveyancing work. They will generally have a wider legal training and may do work other than Conveyancing. Solicitors must have insurances in place to deal with any problems and must comply with a struct set of professional rules.
Sometimes, Solicitors will employ less qualified staff to do the work under their supervision and guidance or even have Licenced Conveyancers in the same firm too. When seeking an online conveyancing quote look out for the Conveyancing Quality Scheme accreditation which is a Law Society accredited standard for excellence in Conveyancing.
All Express Conveyancing Solicitors meet this standard so your online conveyancing quote from us comes with that reassurance.
Licenced Conveyancers are qualified lawyers who deal exclusively with property law and conveyancing. They have not trained in the wider areas of law like Solicitors. They are regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers, which is responsible for setting and maintaining professional standards. It can be difficult to work out who is dong the work on your transaction so you should ask!
Estate Agent Referrals
It is tempting to rely on the Estate Agent who may unprompted make a recommendation to you for a Conveyancer. The question to ask is Why? You might like your Estate Agent very much. You may get on with them and trust them but remember their job is to find buyers and sellers for houses and that is what they know about. You would not expect them to be able to discern what is the right Conveyancer for your particular transaction.
What is in it for them is another great question. Are they recommending a Conveyancer simply because they know them to be brilliant at the job, or is it a friend or is it that there is some form of incentive for the Estate Agent? This can range from being taken out to an event as a thank you or perhaps even be a direct financial reward in the form of a fee for the recommendation. Lovely as they might be, can you really be sure that the Estate Agent has your best interests at heart. Or is it what they get out of it that matters? Would they tell you!? If you knew would it make you feel differently about who they suggested? It does mean your Conveyancing cost will go up to pay for the fee!
Friends and Family
Again, nothing wrong with listening to friends and family and they may have lots of suggestions to make about who to use. But did they do their homework when choosing a Conveyancer? Do they know the particular issues which might affect your transaction? Are well meaning people you know the right source of informed expert information? Maybe, maybe not but you can be sure when requesting an online conveyancing quote through Conveyancing Direct that you are accessing the right professionals who understand your needs.
Getting on the Phone
Ringing around is another way people can go about choosing a Conveyancer. But it can be time consuming and exhausting! You may not be able to speak to the person you need, when you need to. It may not be easy to follow what is being said and it is easy to become bewildered by the various costs involved. At least with an online conveyancing quote you can sit down with cuppa and work through the options and try to compare apples with apples.
This is often the main factor for most consumers when choosing any service and Conveyancing is no different. But it is absolutely essential to make a decision based not on the cost alone but what you actually get for your money. As a result of new rules that came into effect in December 2018, all property lawyers are now required to publish price, service and quality information on their websites to enable consumers to better understand what they can expect when instructing a Conveyancing process.
This requires Solicitors and Licenced Conveyancers who have a website to display:
- Costs information in a prominent place.
This means providing examples of their fees but that can cover a broad range of services and transaction types. The type and quality of the information varies widely and some have complied with the spirit and not the letter of the rules.
- Service information
This might include information on the time taken to complete transactions and links to third party feedback platforms. However, the average transaction time may mean nothing for your particular case!
- Regulatory information
You should be able to easily identify who regulates the firm you are hiring. For lawyers regulated by the CLC, this includes displaying the CLC secure badge in a prominent place. For Solicitors this means displaying the Law Society and SRA symbols.
- Complaints process
All lawyers will have to display details of their complaints process, including access to the Legal Ombudsman and information about what to do if things go wrong.
- Referral details.
While lawyers do not need to disclose specific details of referral arrangements on their website, they must say if they enter into such agreements and the average fee, or range of fees, they pay. This may not always be easy to understand.
When choosing your Conveyancer, make sure you have the right information, know who is doing the work, how much it will cost and what they can do to make sure your transaction goes smoothly. Now make that cuppa and make a start with that online conveyancing quote!