Choose licensed conveyancer or solicitor?

October 1, 2018

Who do I need and what’s the difference between a lawyer, a solicitor and a conveyancer?

Both solicitors (who are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority) and licensed conveyancers (who are regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers) are fully regulated and insured to handle property transactions and they will have almost identical conveyancing practices.

The main difference is likely to be price, conveyancers specialise in property and solicitors are qualified lawyers trained in many aspects of law, so be a better choice if you are wanting to do other legal work as part of the transaction for example a will or trust.

When should I use a solicitor rather than conveyancer?

If there is a more complex situation then some clients choose solicitors so they can get legal assistance beyond the property transaction, however in most cases, a conveyancer will be able to handle even the most complex property from start to finish.

What does conveyancing cover?

Conveyancing is simply the transfer of ownership one party to another. It ensures checks that establish if the transaction is legal and, for the buyer, that there are no hidden issues with the property.  As a buyer this ensures you are buying the property that you think you are!

Do I need anything special If am using a mortgage?

Mortgage lenders will only deal with certain conveyancers and solicitors – those on their ‘panel’. If the conveyancer you have chosen is not on the panel then you may have to pay for the bank’s representation fees which varies from bank to bank.

Should I use the Conveyancer that my estate agent recommended?

Difficult question to answer, here is some things to consider. There is no practical reason why you would need to.Using your estate agents choice won't help in terms of avoiding any delays, to get better service or for better communication. Make sure you ask your estate agent if they get a commission on the recommendation and if so, how much it is. Not all agents take a commission. Some smaller agents may not be interested in earning referral fees, preferring to recommend a conveyancer who they know will offer a great, smooth service. But by asking you will know it you are paying extra, get quotes to compare costs. Some include stamp duty costs, if they don't you can easily use a Stamp Duty Calculator.

If you are buying or selling a property then you should not feel obliged to use your estate agent’s preferred conveyancer / solicitor to ensure that you secure your property.

The information provided in all of our blogs reflects only a narrative of some elements to consider on the topic. The blogs do not contain considered legal advice and should not be relied upon as advice. Please see our website terms and conditions for full details of our disclaimer. If you are interested in obtaining advice, please contact one of our lawyers who will be happy and able to advise you on your own particular circumstances.