Buying your very first property is surely exciting – full of possibilities and potential for profit. In my past articles, I shared tips and insights on this topic – such as how to choose the right property and how to financially prepare for it.

Today, I will tackle another facet of a property sale, one that might be technically challenging and often misunderstood – but necessary nevertheless. In this article, let’s discuss everything you should know about conveyancing.

What is conveyancing?

Conveyancing is the legal and administrative process of transferring the ownership of a property from one owner to another. All property sale transactions cannot be completed without it. This includes buying, selling and remortgaging.

Basically, conveyancing takes place after you and the buyer come to an agreement for the purchase of the house.

What happens during a conveyance?

The conveyancing process is generally divided into two stages:

The Exchange of contracts is the initial phase where the terms of the agreement are mutually decided and put into writing. This stage also involves surveying and searching the property to assess its condition and ensure its boundaries.

Following this is the Completion which is the transfer of the title and clearing of the property for the new occupant.

Who performs conveyancing for a property sale?

Conveyancing for a property sale can be executed by either of the following legal professionals:

A Conveyancing Solicitor is a lawyer who specializes in property conveyancing (or it is one of his specializations) but can also perform other legal works. On the other hand, a Licensed Conveyancer is not necessarily a lawyer but someone legally authorized to conduct a conveyance.

How much does it cost to hire a conveyancing service?

The cost of a conveyancing service will vary on several factors including the value of the property, the payment scheme, and whether the purchase is a freehold or a leasehold.

Based on transaction records, the average fee paid for property sales last year was £1,500. However, the number can go up or down depending on the factors mentioned above. Different conveyancers will also charge different fees so it could be wise to inquire with different providers to find the best one.

Take note as well as conveyancing fees normally don’t include the Stamp Duty Tax which might apply to your purchase if you are not a first-time buyer.

How long does a conveyance take?

Conveyancing is a tedious job which involves several sub-processes. As a modest estimate, a full conveyance for a freehold property lasts from 2 to 2.5 months while a leasehold property can last between 2.5 to – 3 months.

Factors that may affect this can include the smoothness of the payment, the availability of property documents and how updated they are.

Am I required to hire a conveyance professional?

Technically speaking, you can perform your own conveyance – but I’m afraid it may not be the most practical choice. It is quite complex and requires deep knowledge of the processes involved, the governing laws, potential loopholes, and so on.

Unless you have the experience and training, it will be wise to hire a professional to do it for you. Looking on the bright side, it will mean you will be able to focus on your plans for your new property.

Before you go…

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