FOR TRUST. FOR ADVICE. FOR LIFE.
Professional, personal and passionate
Buying or selling your home is often a stressful experience, as well as a huge financial commitment. You need reliable support to ensure there are no unexpected surprises.
We have helped thousands of homeowners across the South take this big step with confidence, thanks to our team of experienced legal professionals and their personal approach that goes the extra mile.
Helping all aspects of conveyancing
Buying and selling
Whether it is your first home or your next home, we help protect your investment and keep your move on schedule during the complex procedure.
Ensuring you have got legal support during this important process, from start to finish.
Guiding you through each stage of buying a shared ownership home. Thinking of the present as well as the future.
Help to buy
Opening up the property ladder to more people than ever, we provide you with comprehensive advice and guidance for all help-to-buy schemes.
Transfer of equity
There are many legal requirements and implications of a transfer of equity. We help you build a plan that achieves your goals without risk.
Why use Andrew & Andrew Solicitors?
With decades of experience, our residential conveyancing team are committed to providing a responsive, dedicated service that keeps your move on track, smooth and stress-free.
We keep you thoroughly updated throughout your time with our team, and you will be assigned an individual conveyancing lawyer or executive that stays with you from start to finish.
Accredited by the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme, you can be assured of a reliable and professional service that meets the highest standards of our industry.
Residential Conveyancing FAQs
If you are selling, it is always wise to speak with a solicitor before you put your house on the market and accept an offer, so that you are ‘legally prepared’ in advance. If you are buying a property, you usually make contact with a solicitor when you have had your offer accepted, but you can obtain an estimate of conveyancing costs prior to this if you have details of the property value.
It is important to do some initial research before you view any properties. There are a lot of different mortgages and products on the market, and you need time to find out which one is best for you and your circumstances. You can obtain what is known as a ‘mortgage in principle’ from most lenders before putting in an offer on a property. You can either contact your bank or building society directly or find a mortgage advisor to help you.
You will need to budget for both legal costs payable to your solicitor, along with disbursements payable to a third party, for example, payments made to the Land Registry or for search fees. If you are selling, you will also need to pay the estate agent’s fee and if you are buying, there may well be Stamp Duty Land Tax payable to HMRC. You might wish to carry out a property survey which will be an additional cost.
A chain is when a number of linked transactions build up, each dependent on the other. Exchange of contracts must take place simultaneously on all transactions, with the same completion date. As the chain is the number of houses and people buying and selling at once, this means the speed of progress is usually dictated by the slowest link in the chain.
The national average from instructing your solicitor to completion for a freehold property is around 6 to 8 weeks and for a leasehold property 10 to 12 weeks. Each transaction is individual and the circumstances and requirements of all parties in the chain will not be the same. If the title is straightforward and searches are returned quickly, the transaction could go through quicker however a complex transaction with a long chain may take a lot longer. The national average is merely a guide.
Solicitors, like most organisations which regularly handle large amounts of client money, are regulated by the Money Laundering Regulations.
This means that all solicitors are required by law to verify the identity of their clients at the outset of their relationship, and you will be asked to provide photographic identification and evidence of residence at the correspondence address you have provided.
All clients are identified using the same procedures which involves undertaking a variety of checks, including an electronic search.
If you are purchasing a property, you will also be asked to provide proof as to how you have acquired the money being used to purchase the property. It is important we check the origin of any money to protect against mortgage fraud or money laundering.
Any information which you provide will of course be held in the strictest confidence and only used for the above purposes.
The process of exchanging contracts is dealt with in a telephone conversation between the solicitors acting for the seller and buyer.
In this conversation, the terms of the contract are confirmed, including the deposit amount which is available and the completion date which is being agreed. Once contracts have been exchanged, the seller and buyer are committed unconditionally to the transaction taking place on the completion date.
The completion date, also referred to as the ‘moving date’ is the day the seller vacates the property if not already empty and the buyer collects the keys to the property they are purchasing. This is also the day the funds are transferred through the banking system by the solicitors involved in the transaction.
A local search is a set of standard enquiries that your solicitor will raise with the Local Authority.
The search will relate solely to the property itself, which means that it does not reveal everything regarding the local area. For example, any proposals to develop or extend neighbouring land or property would not show on the search result and if concerned you should make your own enquiries.
If you are obtaining a mortgage to purchase the property, your mortgage company will require a valuation. This is separate to a property survey and is for the lender’s benefit, to primarily determine whether the property you are buying is worth the amount you have agreed to pay for it.
It is always sensible to have your own independent survey carried out. A thorough inspection of the property by a qualified person is vital, as the money you spend on a survey could reveal issues that you were completely unaware of, and more importantly, could help save you money by providing support for negotiating a price reduction.
There are several different levels of property survey available dependent on the age and type of property you are buying, as well as the location. A surveyor will be able to advise you on the best survey for the property you are buying.
There are no longer ‘deeds’ as such anymore, as the legal documents and evidence of ownership of property are held centrally and electronically at the Land Registry.
However, there will be a number of useful supporting documents which you will need to keep in a safe place as they will be required when the property is sold again, and these will be sent to you following completion, once registration formalities have been completed by the Land Registry.