What Is Residential Conveyancing?

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Conveyancing is the legal process of buying and selling property, therefore it follows that residential conveyancing relates specifically to the buying and selling of residential property. Residential property is characterised by private residences, i.e. homes: such as flats and houses. Conveyancing deals with the transfer of property from buyer to seller and vice versa. It does not cover other aspects of law related to housing matters, such as planning, environment and landlord law.

Residential conveyancing oversees:

– The agreement of and transfer of contracts. Once contracts are exchanged this will finalise the completion date of the sale. Draft contracts are drawn up very close to the beginning of the process. Your solicitor will take care of this and will make sure both parties are happy with the contractual agreement they are entering into. Contracts may be revised several times before the final contracts are exchanged. Contracts will not actually be exchanged until much later in the conveyancing process.

– The transfer of funds: you conveyancing solicitor will interact closely with your bank regarding your mortgage, and the release and transfer thereof. They will also liaise closely with you should you be negotiating a cash sale. Enquires will be made regarding mortgages and funds early on in the process. Should monetary funds not be available the sale or purchase will halt, your solicitor will confirm funds and amounts.

– Enquiries regarding planning restrictions, parking, boundaries and subletting to name a few items that may be of interest regarding the property you are purchasing. Your solicitor will investigate any queries you may have and will view papers detailing fixtures, fittings and other things which may be included in the purchase of the property.

– Your solicitor will ensure the transfer of the property’s deed into the new owner’s name and will also register you as the legal owner of the property with HM Land Registry. These processes will occur in the final stages of the deal, with the property being registered with the Land Registry as the final chapter of the journey.

– Stamp duty (Stamp Duty Land Tax is usually paid): This is a tax which applies to the purchase of all property, in this case, housing, but it also applies to shares. Stamp duty will have to be paid and this will be taken care of by your conveyancing solicitor.

As can be seen conveyancing is a complicated process, and has the potential to be slow, or to be prone to error. Therefore you would be well advised to instruct a conveyancing solicitor to take care of the process for you; doing it yourself could become extremely difficult should issues arise.