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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Conveyancers ‘should have mortgage funds the day before completion’

A call has gone out for conveyancers to have all monies - including mortgage funds - in place the day before completion. 

The plea has come from the Society of Licensed Conveyancers, the professional body that represents licensed conveyancers.  

It says that although it’s the usual practice for many conveyancers to do this “there are still too many law firms that are waiting until the day of completion to obtain funds from mortgage lenders and/or clients, slowing down completion times and adding further stress to the home moving process.”

SLC chairman Simon Law says: “It’s long been recognised as best practice for conveyancers to make sure that they are in funds from mortgage lenders, clients and other external sources the day before completion. This is particularly important in respect of properties where a chain is involved, as any delay in transmission of funds can have a severe impact on the whole chain.”

The society says the problem of delayed completions has been compounded in recent times by lenders undertaking anti-money laundering processes that can hold up funds transmission of funds. 

“As specialist property lawyers, members of the SLC and their clients are often frustrated to hear the lawyer on the other side saying they are awaiting mortgage funds on completion day. There’s simply no need for this and those lawyers are doing a disservice to their customers and the profession” adds Law.

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    Please members of SLC, please do obtain funds a day early, so chains are not delayed.

  • Matt Faizey

    Amen to that.

    Too many times some poor family is stuck in their car for 3 hours only then moving in during the evening (often with young children) in a chaotic and distressed state solely because some idiot didn't draw funds down in advance.

    + of course the call needs to be made for funds to be chased on, well. And moved on swiftly.
    With the bottom of the chain being started no later than 9am.

    Families and removals staff do not deserve the multi-hour holdups that wreck the day just because 'professionals' can't be bothered to adhere to a swift, reasonable 1-2pm time for the front door being open to their new home.

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    The culprits are various:

    1. sellers who are not out (is it me or are we seeing 4pm too often as a seller vacating time)
    2. lawyers who are too busy to realise and then act on receipt of money to release keys
    3. lawyers who forget to tell the other lawyer they have had the money OR WORSE they email the other lawyer to tell them (completion day is about phone callslpeople!!!)
    4. lawyers who fail to obtain necessary client or mortgage money money the day before
    5. lawyers who fail to check in plenty of good time if the lender received their mortgage funds request and only realise the day before completion giving no time to replace it
    6. the buyer at the start of the chain does not have their lawyer place the money in the system at 9am or before

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    I seem to remember that the Law Society's guidance is that we need to ask our client's permission specifically to draw down the money a day early, as this will cost them an extra, say, £11 of interest on a £200,000 mortgage (assuming they have an initial fixed-rate deal). I'm not saying that's a reason not to do it (I also usually recommend that clients move out the day before and stay elsewhere overnight), but the professional rules need to change to reflect reality and good practice.

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