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  • Cross Keys Estates - Residential Sales and Lettings - Choosing the right Solicitor

    Choosing the right Solicitor

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  • Cross Keys Estates - Residential Sales and Lettings - Choosing the right Solicitor
    Choosing the right Solicitor

Choosing the right Solicitor

Jun 2024


By Fiona Hardie, Senior Property Consultant

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How to choose the right solicitor for you and your transaction – When selling or purchasing a property.

Summary:

As we all know buying and selling a property is one of the biggest things you will do and we understand that this comes with worry and also stress. When choosing your desired solicitor, finding the right point of contact is extremely important. Your desired choice can impact the outcome of your sale or purchase whether it’s leasehold, freehold or commercial or due to legal reasons.

Choosing a solicitor for your needs from the start:

One of the main things is making sure your solicitor is made aware and understands your specific legal needs, so identifying your requirements from the start is crucial to avoid any bumps in the road. This can be anything from just a normal selling and buying transaction, to a transaction where there are more complex needs being a separation / divorce, a complex lease transaction or a probate transaction. Knowing your legal needs will help you narrow down the field of potential solicitors with the experience that will be required for your transaction.

Recommendation for potential solicitors:

If you are new to the selling and buying process, or have sold and brought a property before but was not satisfied with your chosen solicitor at the time, one of the most reliable ways to find a proactive solicitor is through recommendations. This could be from friends, family members and also the estate agent who is dealing with your property.

We understand that some clients believe estate agents only recommend solicitors to “gain commission” however this is not the case. As we deal with solicitors daily, it comes to light which solicitors have a reputable background and we also come across ones that unfortunately don’t. It is our duty of care to act in the best interest of our clients, as we of course want to recommend solicitors in which we have experienced transactions with and have also received great feedback.

It’s a common frustration that online solicitors don’t respond to you, and this tends to be the case. Emails will get lost and calls get missed with no returned contact so it’s reassuring when you have a local solicitor acting for you, knowing you can arrange an appointment to meet with your solicitor to raise or go through any concerns in person.

The end result for all parties involved is that we all look for a smooth, and steady process. However, where obstacles do come up, you as the client want to have the confidence your acting solicitor can deal with the issues promptly and also go “The Extra Mile” where required.

My advice would be choosing a local solicitor.

Fees and Comparing:

We also recommend you obtain 2-3 solicitors’ quotes from recommendations. This way, before making a decision you can compare the initial quotes and decide by liaising with the solicitors, which one you feel you have the most confidence in and whether they are the right solicitor for your transaction. Solicitor quotes can vary depending on the solicitor’s expertise and the complexity of your transaction i.e., if it’s a Leasehold? Is it a listed building? are there any restrictions or covenants on the property?

All these factors take a big part in the initial quotation. Don’t forget to discuss the breakdown of fees and the payment structure during your first interaction with the solicitor. This will help you avoid any financial surprises down the road. Remember, the cheapest option is not always the best option.

The importance of Communication from your appointed Solicitor:

Good communication skills are one of the most essential things to look out for, especially in what could be a stressful and tough time. Effective communication can give you the confidence to trust and also build a rapport with your solicitor, along with managing all parties’ expectations by making sure you are both on the same page, at the same time.

Lastly, choosing the right solicitor is a decision that should not be rushed. Take the time to research by looking into reviews for the individual and the company, liaise with multiple solicitors (2-3), and consider all aspects including their fees, the communication received to date and most importantly, do you feel confident and could you trust your appointed solicitor?

Hopefully by following these steps, you can ensure that you are well-represented from the start with a pro-active solicitor, with confidence that you will reach a point of exchange of contracts with completion following.

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