Recommendations may not be what they seem

Published: 06/06/2020 By Allan Fuller

Buying a property, especially if you are doing it for the first time, can seem confusing and more beset with unseen traps than you might imagine. 
This month we will focus on one practice which may not always work in your favour. If you are buying or selling any property in England or Wales you will almost certainly use a solicitor of conveyancing company to deal with all of the legal aspects and protect your interests.

 The company that is dealing with the sale, be they conventional estate agent or an on line company will quite likely be extremely helpful and apparently kind in recommending that you use a particular company for the legal aspects. This will doubtless be accompanied by being told that the company works very closely with their  particular business and it will be best for you and speed up the transaction.

 Now all of that may well be true. But what you probably will not get told is that the company you are buying or selling through is getting a nice fat kickback from whatever business they recommend, and the individual you are dealing with gets a nice fact commission too, usually negotiators are targeted to get a certain number of referrals each month.

 Point is it will be hidden away in the small print of the companies terms and conditions, and is done in all innocence. You will also be told that the cost will be much less than using a local solicitor. If that is the case what is so wrong? Well maybe nothing, but remember this is probably you most expensive personal transaction. In our experience in life you tend to get what you pay for. What you don’t want to find too late is that you are dealing with a company miles away with virtually the entire process dealt with remotely and hard to talk to someone whom is doing little more than performing a tick box process. Do your own shopping around before you agree to who you will use, check out local solicitors, they will be familiar with properties in their districts, also know the local authority policies. Best of all they will be accessible. If you are not familiar with buying and selling then to be able to sit on a solicitors office ( social distancing at the current time of course) and have legal terms explained is a great comfort.

 So remember that great Latin phrase, (lawyers are like gardeners, they love Latin) Caveat Emptor, not familiar to you, it simply means, Let the buyer beware. You have been warned.