All you need to know about conveyancing

Conveyancing is the process of legally transferring your home’s ownership over to your buyer. It starts when an offer is made and ends when you give the new homeowner their keys. When you’re thinking about selling your home, you’ll need either a conveyancing solicitor to do a lot of the work for you.

Conveyancing is a crucial part of any property exchange. The job of a conveyancing solicitor is to ensure that the property is passed over to the buyer without any legal issues. The procedure is direct, and an expert conveyancer will be able to foresee any potential issues and attempt to stop them before they cause any inconvenience. Of course, this isn’t always the case – some transfers go completely smoothly, and others can become very rocky. Having a conveyancing solicitor on you side, however, would benefit you either way.

When should you get a solicitor?
Around the time that you have chosen an estate agent to sell your property, you should also choose a solicitor; but remember that they can only start working after you have a formal offer from a buyer on your property.

Your conveyancing solicitor will provide a few questionnaires for you to complete. These will include a general questionnaire that asks for information on disputes, as well as any proposed developments, building works, and information on council tax and utilities. You can expect to be asked which fittings and fixtures you’d like to include in the sale of the property, too. Finally, your solicitor will ask you to finalise when and where you’ll be handing over the property’s keys to your buyer, and to provide proof that the property is mortgage free.

The conveyancing process
The conveyancing process has four main sections, and it’s crucial that you have a conveyancing solicitor around before the procedures begin.

Part 1: The title deed for the property should be located.

Part 2: Before a title seek is finished, a conveyancer will list any hindrances and confinements related to the property in question.

Part 3: The contract. An offer is agreed upon by all parties that details terms and conditions relating to the property. A conveyancing solicitor can address any issues on your behalf and draw up the agreement new for you.

Part 4: After the settlement, your solicitor will send a Notice of Disposition to all of your registered utility companies and your local council; letting them know about the change in property ownership.

Handing over your keys
Once an agreed time and date for the contract exchange has been made, your solicitor will complete this for you. Once contracts are exchanged, you are legally bound to sell your property. If you pull out, you risk being sued.

Once the buyer has their new keys, you solicitor will be in receipt of the outstanding balance of your sale price. Your solicitor then gives the buyer the documentation to prove that they now own the property. And finally, you pay your estate agent and your solicitor.