Conveyancing involves all the legal aspects of transferring the ownership of a property from a seller to a buyer. There are several steps involved in conveyancing and a typical transaction takes a minimum of eight weeks.

With many different issues to consider, it’s a good idea to find out as much as you can about the process and get some help from a conveyancing solicitor who will be able to deal with all the steps involved. Finding the right solicitor can help to make the process of buying or selling your house a smooth and simple one. You might be surprised to find that conveyancing is not necessarily an expensive process.

What’s involved in property conveyancing? In England and Wales this is the process

  • When an offer is accepted, conveyancing solicitors need to be appointed. This should be separate solicitors for each party.
  • Your mortgage lender will arrange a valuation of the property.
  • You may want to have your own surveys carried out on the property for your own benefit – such as assessing the structure, wiring and plumbing.  This may cost up to a few hundred pounds, but on a purchase of possibly several hundred thousand pounds, this is not a lot to spend for peace of mind.
  • The solicitor will carry out searches to find the official details about the property – including registered boundaries, and any planning permissions that have or haven’t been granted nearby.
  • In England and Wales, you will ‘exchange contracts’ when all solicitors are satisfied that their searches have shown no problems. Any deposits are usually paid at this stage and the contract becomes legally binding.

In Scotland the law on property is different – when you buy a house contracts become binding at an earlier stage and can be signed on an ‘offers over’ basis, a ‘fixed price’ basis or ‘subject to survey’ basis.

We can help to put you in touch with conveyancing solicitors and mortgage advisers in your area – find a professional adviser here.

Questions you might like to ask your solicitor…

  • Are all of the search fees included in your estimate?
  • What paperwork can I expect to receive from you and at what point in the process? 
  • Will you need a deposit for your services?
  • Can you tell me how long it will take?