Selling a house without using a solicitor – feasible?

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  • Selling a house without using a solicitor – feasible?
  • peterfile
    Member

    If you don’t use a solicitor/conveyancer, you’ve got no PI cover to rely on if it all goes wrong. You screw up, you take the hit.

    Will there be a mortgage on the property? If so, I’d be pretty surprised if the lenders would allow them to act independently of someone who actually knows what they are doing.

    Conveyancers are pretty cheap.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    Can’t comment on whether they’re interested in there being no PI cover.

    Can’t imagine there being a mortgage as our vendors have lived in the current property for 30+ yrs and are down-sizing to a cheaper home.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    We and our vendors are using solicitors so our purchase is (hopefully) sound. Naturally I don’t want our vendors to end up with a retirement property full of legal wrangles, but at the same time it’s not our problem. We want to move fast as do they, so I really don’t want this bunch at the end of the chain putting several spanners in the works just as we’re about to move. I won’t be impressed if we (with a 3yr old monkey) end up having to find temporary accommodation.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    Currently in the throes of buying a house. Found out yesterday that the vendors we’re buying from are purchasing a vacant property from a family who have chosen to not use a solicitor. The vacant element is due to the property being left to the family through a bereavement. I’ve asked our vendors to get their solicitors in contact with the family to qualify how they’re going to achieve this as nobody seems intent on speeding things along thus far. They and us want to move fast FTR.

    Just wondering how simple or complex this could become, i.e does a legal rep have to get involved at some point, where would the vendors get all the relevant paperwork from, how likely are they to mess it up seeing as they’ve not proven to be particular competent thus far?

    Cheers

    EDIT: Perhaps I should add that the vendors also chose to use an online agent and save a few £k. Which makes me think 1) they’re trying to cut every financial corner they can and 2) with the agent having made their up front money, there’s no-one on ‘that side of the fence’ having to hassle them.

    Premier Icon dannybgoode
    Subscriber

    Your ok and your seller is ok (from the position of a seller) but they are in a position as a buyer I would certainly not accept.

    Its your solicitor’s job to gather all the information about the property and the vendor’s solicitor’s job to answer any legal questions which may arise of the title of the property and the like.

    The vendor’s solicitor also draws up the contract for the sale and purchase (the thing you exchange when people say we have ‘exchanged contracts’).

    Your solicitor may need to negotiate certain aspects of the contract.

    Does this sound like the sort of thing you want someone with no legal training and no experience of house sales to do?

    Their solicitor may not even work with the relevant seller – I used to work in a conveyancing office and my old team manager was an ex-conveyancer also and I’m pretty certain whilst legally you can act for yourself its not something we would have entertained.

    This is what a solictor does during a property transaction

    Cheers

    Danny B

    Premier Icon Nipper99
    Subscriber

    how will you ensure they dont bugger off with your money without signing the house over, how do you know they own the house and that it is not mortgaged or otherwise charged.

    Premier Icon nickdavies
    Subscriber

    It shouldn’t be a problem – your vendors solicitor will do the work required for them, and as long as he’s happy the other vendors shouldn’t have to do much as long as probate has been sorted and its a straight sale with no other charges. It would be more problematic if the vendors at the end of the chain were also in the chain and moving on but as it stands I wouldn’t worry about it.

    Issues may arise if searches etc come back with problems which may mean the lack of a solicitor their end could slow things own, but if its a bereavement sale id imagine they’d be keen to move it on quickly. I’d rather be in your situation than a big long chain, it could fall over with a solicitor anyway.

    (This is assuming your not on the market as you don’t say your selling). I’d have thought if it did go south your vendor would be the one moving into temporary accommodation as they are the ones who risk to lose the sale.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    There might be some confusion in the way I’ve communicated my OP:

    – We’re using a solicitor to buy a house from X
    – X are using a solicitor to sell house to us
    – X are using the same solicitor to buy house from Y
    – Y are not using a solicitor to sell house to X

    Therefore the real issue is with X buying the house from Y, yet we might feel the knock on effect if it goes t1ts up.

    sugdenr
    Member

    Selling w/o solicitor is ok, only so long as you own outright. Everything else you need solicitor esp. if mortgage is involved as bank doesn’t trust you not to run off!

    Premier Icon jambalaya
    Subscriber

    I wouldn’t buy a hous without ypusing a solicitor, IMO it’s essential and actually good value for money.

    As an aside I know lots of people who’ve don’t without estate agents altogether, cutting expense there makes sense but no solicitor is nuts

    spacemonkey
    Member

    Cutting out the agent is one thing, but going without a solicitor seems pretty questionable IMO unless it really is a straightforward sale.

    In our case, family Y messed family X about re price so I’m not exactly filled with confidence re completing quickly and on time. It is a vacant property, however, so hopefully that’ll simplify things.

    Just about to complete on our first house. Hooray!
    The HSBC, an independent mortgage advisor and our final choice of Natwest all told us we had to have a solicitor by law. They all said the solicitor is needed to do the change of deeds bit. I presume they were telling the truth?

    No idea what happens if a mortgage isn’t involved.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    all told us we had to have a solicitor by law.

    But you’re buying, not selling? The former is a lot more complicated re searches etc.

    Premier Icon nickdavies
    Subscriber

    Therefore the real issue is with X buying the house from Y, yet we might feel the knock on effect if it goes t1ts up.

    It could go tits up anyway! I’d be much happier in your situation than a long chain all with solicitors. I’ve been trying to buy again for a few years and every purchase I’ve agreed on has fallen apart, there’s been 5/6 so now the first question I ask is is it vacant possession, if not, not interested.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    Just had a chat with our solicitors. They say that family Y may well not understand the legal docs/terms/clauses/etc and end up messing around family X’s solicitors thus incurring more charges for them (family X), who of course won’t be happy. The actual exchange/completion may not be truly validated without a legal rep either.

    Sounds like a potential load of old ar5e.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    BTW, that’s a pretty bad run of luck you’re having there Nick! Hope it turns round with the next one.

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