Conveyancing FAQs

That relate to your sale or purchase with Attwells Solicitors.

Q) What is Conveyancing?

A) Conveyancing is a term given to the legal transaction of the ownership of a property or piece of land. Attwells Solicitors employ conveyancing solicitors and licensed conveyancers, to ensure our clients receive the best possible conveyancing service.

Q) What does a conveyancer do?

A) Our team of conveyancers assist you with all the legal administrative work required to lawfully transfer ownership of a property or piece of land. Once you instruct Attwells we will begin liaising with a range of organisations connected to your transaction, such as local authorities, utility companies and Land Registry. Attwells are committed to jargon-free conveyancing and will report back to you our progress.

Q) How long will it take to exchange contracts?

A) This depends on the complexity of your purchase or sale. If you are in a chain, for example, your exchange may take a little longer, however Attwells Solicitors approach to conveyancing will ensure a quick conveyancing completion.  

Q) What are conveyancing fees?

A) Our conveyancing fees depend on the value of your property or land. Our online calculator allows you to receive an online conveyancing quote quickly and easily, allowing you to instruct Attwells in minutes.   

Q) When are conveyancing fees paid?

A) The only upfront costs are your disbursement fees. Our fees are payable on completion provided there is not a significant delay between exchange and completion

Q) I don’t have a cheque book – can I pay the money you have asked for on account using my debit or credit card?

A) Yes you can. You just need to contact the number shown at the top of the quote letter in order to make arrangements to do so, or alternatively you can pay online.

Q) I would like to get the ball rolling immediately however I won’t have chance to look at completing the forms you have sent for a few days – how can I do so?

A) You can do this either by replying to the e-mail you have received with your quotation or e-mail the New Business Team at newbusiness@attwells.com to say that is what you would like to do, or alternatively by telephoning the New Business Team to make the payment on account as above.

Q) If there is more than one person purchasing or selling the property do you need identification from all of us?

A) Yes.  We need certified photo identification and proof of address for all parties involved in the transaction. If a family member or friend is gifting you any money towards your purchase we will also need certified photo identification and proof of address from them.

Q) I don’t have any photo identification – what should I do?

A) You can therefore provide three forms of the proof of address listed on our identification requirements sheet together with your date of birth.

Q) I am already an existing client of Attwells – do I need to provide identification again?

A) If it has been longer than six months since we last acted for you then yes, we will need you to provide us with updated certified identification and proof of address.

Q) I got married recently and my identification is still in my maiden name. Do you need me to provide any other information?

A) Yes, we will also need you to provide your marriage certificate. We will either need you to send the original which we can copy and then return to you, or a copy which has been certified by a local solicitor.

Q) I have got married since purchasing the property I am now selling.  Do you need me to provide any other information?

A) Yes, we will also need you to provide your marriage certificate. We will either need you to send the original which we can copy and then return to you, or a copy which has been certified by a local solicitor.

Q) Stamp Duty is not payable on my purchase – why have you included a stamp duty form fee within my quotation?

A) Although you may be exempt from paying stamp duty we are still required to complete a return to HM Revenue & Customs to notify them that the purchase has taken place.

Q) If my sale or purchase falls through will I need to pay any of your fees?

A) Our quotations are provided on a no sale no fee basis. Therefore so if for any reason a matter does not progress to exchange and completion then you will not need to pay any legal fees to us. You will however be required to pay any third party costs such as the cost of the searches, so it may not be possible to refund the full amount of money you have paid on account.

Q) I have already made a payment on account for searches and/or identification checks before being referred to you.  Do I need to pay this to you again?

A) No. If you have already paid these we will be aware of this and they do not need to be paid again to us. However they are shown in your quotation for your information so you can see a total of the costs which are payable.

Q) If I want to return my completed documents in the post do I need to send these by Recorded Delivery?

A) This is not essential, however if you wish to do so it is entirely up to you. Our only advice would be that if you are posting the information back to us and you don’t want to send them by Recorded Delivery that you do however take the information to the Post Office to ensure that the correct amount of postage is put on the envelope as this is now worked out by the size of the envelope as well as the weight.  One first class stamp is not enough postage for an A4 size envelope. By ensuring that documents are taken to the Post Office this will avoid unnecessary delays with your documents being received as it can take up to three weeks for us to receive something which has been sent to us with insufficient postage.

Q) I was referred by Move With Us and have completed my forms online using the Navigator System – do I need to return any documents to you?

A) Yes - if you have completed documents online using the Navigator system we will still need you to complete and return the Client Information Form and Matter Information Form as this is our record that you have formally instructed us to act for you.

Q) Can I return my completed documents by e-mail?

A) Yes - once you have completed the forms these can be scanned and returned by e-mail to newbusiness@attwells.com. Certified identification documents can also be sent in this way.

Q) My property has not yet sold – do I need to return the documents to you yet?

A) You can wait until you have an offer in place before you choose to instruct us if you wish. However, by returning the completed documents together with a payment on account at this stage means that we can get your file legally prepared, carry out our identification checks and obtain the information required from the Land Registry so that when you do accept an offer we can usually get the contract document to the sellers solicitor within 24 hours.

Q) I’m unsure of some of the information you have asked for on the instruction and/or protocol documents – what should I do?

A) The first step is to get as much information completed as you can and the forms returned to us as soon as possible. For anything you are unsure of you can either tick the ‘not known’ box, leave this question blank or write a comment in the spaces provided. Once we receive and review the forms we will contact you if there is anything that we need to confirm with you further.

Q) What happens after I return the instruction documents to you?

A) Once we receive these the file will be opened and assigned to a member of our conveyancing team. We will provide you with written confirmation of this together with confirmation of their direct contact details. This will be your point of contact from this point onwards.

Your identification will be passed to our accounts department who will carry out the electronic identification checks we are required to complete, if applicable.

Any money you have made on account will be allocated to your administration and you will receive a receipt for your payment.

Q) What are the timescales for exchange and completion once I return my documents to you?

A) An approximate timescale is eight to ten weeks however each conveyancing transaction is different and it is not possible to give a more detailed timescale at this stage. We will deal with your work as quickly as possible however the transaction can really only progress as quickly as the slowest party in the chain. Your appointed conveyancer will be able to discuss this with you in more detail and will keep you updated on progress as the transaction progresses.

Q) I have Power of Attorney to sell the property belonging to a family member.  Whose details do I need to complete on the forms and whose identification do you need?

A) If you have a Power of Attorney in place then you will be our client, so we will therefore need your details on the form and your identification.

Q) I am getting an amount of money towards my purchase gifted to me by a friend or family member.  What information do you need to see regarding this?

A) We will need a signed letter from the person gifting you they money confirming the amount they are gifting you, whether or not this is repayable (if it is the basis on which it will be repaid), their certified photo identification and proof of address, and evidence for their source of funds (for example if this is savings from wages we will need to see three months’ worth of statements from the account/s that this money has been accumulated in over time).  If the money has already been given to you and is in your account then we do still need to see all of this documentation in respect of the gift.