Moving house can be one of the most stressful times in anyone’s life, only made worse when things don’t go to plan. Some of the most common problems arise from documentation both the buyer and seller needs to produce along the way. People assume that the documents received with the purchase of the property are all they need, but this isn’t always the case.
In certain circumstances, a previous solicitor might not have completed the checks correctly, meaning clients will be missing vital paperwork when they come to sell. With this in mind, it’s little wonder that 50% of legal negligence claims are brought against conveyancers.
It’s for this reason that conveyancing is about much more than finding a solicitor with the lowest fees. It’s vital buyers and sellers use a firm that specialises in conveyancing and have a proven track record.
Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS)
In 2011, the Law Society set up the Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) which provides a recognised quality standard for residential conveyancing practices. Membership establishes a level of integrity for firms with stakeholders such as regulators, lenders, insurers as well as residential buyers and sellers. It means a conveyancer has to follow a set of guidelines to minimise the amount of unnecessary processes. It also ensures certain guidelines are followed, reducing the risk of something being missed.
CQS accreditation is not compulsory, but when searching for the very best service and level of care from a solicitor, it helps to look for the CQS mark.
Take Your Time
When choosing your solicitor or conveyancer don’t rush into the decision, take time to get quotes from various companies and get a general feel for the firm. Also, take into consideration whether they want you to rush off the phone or take a genuine interest in your case.
Ask whether they have insurances in place that you can take out (like AVRillo’s No Move, No Fee guarantee) or if they are willing to give you their terms of business up front so that you may see their full costs menu. It may be surprising to learn that a lot of firms won’t send this to you until after you have instructed and, therefore, costs for additional services that you may need will not become apparent until it’s too late.
Opting for a conveyancer based solely on an initial low quote could end up costing more in the long run, especially if a client is forced to drop out of a sale following issues and delays. Spending the time researching all of the options available and then selecting a solicitor that meets the exact requirements trumps one that’s cheaper every time. For what is likely to be the biggest purchase of a lifetime, it’s really not worth scrimping at the final hurdle.