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23 Mar 2023

Residential Property

What is conveyancing? A guide to buying or selling a home

If you’re buying your first home, or selling one, you will come across the term conveyancing. Here’s what you need to know.

In a recent study, it was found that only two out of five UK adults are aware of what conveyancing is. The research among 2,000 UK adults was conducted by the HomeOwners Alliance on behalf of National Conveyancing Week.

What is conveyancing?

Conveyancing is the legal transfer of property from one owner to another. Simply, it ensured that when you buy a property you are getting exactly what you’ve paid for, and when you sell a property, they handle the process of transferring home ownership from seller to buyer.

Conveyancers, or property solicitors, act on behalf of their clients to carry out the whole process, from providing forms of ID to receiving title deeds to the property.

Conveyancing ensures that you legally own the home you’re purchasing.

Who does my conveyancing?

One of the first things a conveyancing solicitor will do is conduct searches with organisations, such as local authorities and utility companies. This is to ensure that there are no building plans underway near the property you are wanting to purchase.

The searches also reveal if there are any sewers running close to the property, if the area is categorised as a flood risk, and whether it has any financial liabilities handing over it from past inhabitants.

They will also advise you of any ‘incurred costs’, such as stamp duty, as well as check the contracts that have been drawn up by the seller’s solicitor or conveyancer. Contracts set out vital details, including the sale price and property boundaries. Then, conveyancers will liaise with your mortgage lender to ensure it has all the information it needs to proceed.

Once the process is finished, they will also pay the required purchase price and register you as the owners of the property with the Land Registry.

How long does conveyancing take?

There is no exact time frame for how long conveyancing can take, as it can vary from case to case. Should everything go to plan, from the offer stage to completion, it is expected for the conveyancing process to last six to eight weeks.

Several factors could have an impact on the process and slow things down, such as purchasing or selling a property that involves many different chains.

How We Can Help

Buying or selling a property can be overwhelming, but the conveyancing process doesn’t need to be. We have dedicated solicitors in our Residential Conveyancing team who are here to help you.

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