We have the practical expertise to help - whether you're buying your first house, moving home or expanding your buy-to-let portfolio. Our lawyers are members of the Law Society's Conveyancing quality scheme and will cover everything from organising the local searches, checking contracts and financial arrangements are in order through to completion. If any problems come up, your conveyancer will tell you at the earliest opportunity and provide advice on the next steps.
You can be sure an independent solicitor will always act in your best interests and not be swayed by the interests of an estate agent.
Tees is proud to remain independent. Much of our work comes from word-of-mouth recommendations and we do not pay any estate agents for work. That means you can rely on us to give you unbiased, expert advice and ensure vital legal details are correct. We will resist pressure from other parties to rush things through that you - our client - might regret later.
Reasons to choose a local conveyancing solicitor
There are lots of conveyancers out there to choose from, including many internet-based conveyancing companies. Often, they may seem to be offering a cheaper service than a local firm of solicitors but take care with your choice of conveyancer because an online company may not be offering the same quality of service, with the same level of expertise and local knowledge, as a local firm of solicitors.
Here are eight reasons to choose a local solicitor to do your conveyancing:
At Tees we offer our own independent financial advice service so we can also help you with any associated financial questions relating to your property transaction, such as insurance or other aspects of your financial plans.
Buying a house is the most expensive purchase most of us will ever make. There’s a lot to think about, sometimes things go wrong, and that can result in you losing out on a dream house or losing money. Our experts at Tees look into every detail and anticipate every pitfall, so you can be confident of a good outcome.
Property transactions are usually major financial decisions. Tees has its own independent financial advisers who can help you build stronger finances for your future and make the big decisions while looking at the whole picture.
Associate Cilex Conveyancing Practitioner, Residential Property
Saffron Walden office
Solicitor, Residential Property
Senior Associate, Residential Property
Associate, Residential Property
There are very limited circumstances when the same firm of solicitors can act for both the buyer and the seller, or the landlord and the tenant. The Solicitors Regulation Authority Code of Conduct 2011 (SRACC 2011) sets out a number of strict rules in connection with the proper handling of conflicts of interests between clients. A firm must never act where there is a potential conflict or a significant risk of conflict. This is to ensure that the solicitor only acts in your best interest. Tees has a dedicated compliance team who regularly assess the potential conflict of interest in matters on which we are instructed.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority Code of Conduct 2011 (SRACC 2011) suggests that a firm should only act for both the lender and the borrower in the following circumstances:
· if the mortgage is on standard terms
· it is able to act in the client’s best interests
· the certificate of title required by the lender is in the form approved by the Law Society and UK Finance.
It is essential that there are no potential conflicts of interest.
If your property has been registered at the Land Registry, a record of ownership is filed digitally online and this can be downloaded. If they are available, it is always helpful to have the deeds as they may contain useful information that may not have been registered. However, if the property is unregistered a solicitor will always need to see the physical title deeds to establish proof of ownership.
Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) is a form of tax which you may be required to pay if you buy, or in some circumstances rent, a property or land in England or Northern Ireland. The amount due (if any) will depend on the purchase price. If you are renting, the amount due will depend on the length of the term, level of rental and whether or not VAT is charged on the rent. If SDLT is payable on the transaction, you will be asked to complete a SDLT return. This will need to be submitted to HMRC, together with the amount payable within 14 days of completion, otherwise you will be liable to pay a penalty fee. Your solicitor will be able to file the return on your behalf.
An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is required by law when a property is built, is being sold or rented out. There is a duty to commission an EPC before the property is put on the market. It shows information about the energy efficiency of a property, including the property’s energy use and typical energy cost. The certificate also provides an energy efficiency rating from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient) and is valid for a period of up to 10 years. If a commercial property is let, a landlord is required by law to have a minimum EPC rating of “E” and may need to make improvements to the property until this has been achieved.
There are certain types of property which are exempt from needing an EPC. These include those which do not have a roof or do not have walls, those which use no energy to condition the indoor climate, religious properties and buildings earmarked for demolition.
Having a property surveyed before buying or renting is highly advisable. It can give you a good idea of the condition of the property and highlight problems which you may otherwise not know about. Commercial tenants should be particularly wary when entering into a lease. This is because the lease may contain repairing obligations that require a tenant to give a property back to the landlord fully in repair. This may be the case even if the tenant was not responsible for any damage, or the property was not in a good state of repair at the start of the tenancy. Your solicitor will advise that you try to limit these obligations.
There are many risks that come with buying a property at auction. If the property seems like a bargain, there is probably good reason for it. It is strongly recommended you ask a solicitor to check through the legal pack in the weeks leading up to the auction date, as well as getting a survey done in case of structural or other issues. You should be conscious of the fact that on the ‘fall of the hammer’, exchange of contracts takes place, which is a legally binding contract between the buyer and the seller. This is often misunderstood. You will be committed to proceed with the purchase in accordance with the terms of the contract, if your bid is successful.
The Land Registry is considered to be conclusive evidence of ownership of a property. This means that the person or entity listed as the owner in the Land Registry is legally considered to be the owner of the property, and their ownership rights will be recognized by the government and courts. However, it's worth noting that this may vary depending on the jurisdiction, and in some cases, additional legal steps may be required to establish ownership.
I wanted to say a big thank you to you Catherine and your team at Bishop's Stortford for your most impressive and responsive service in helping things go smoothly. I've sold a few houses over the years but never had the benefit of such a good conveyancing service and without your help I have a feeling that things would have progressed very slowly. I'm looking to buy my next house very soon and will certainly be knocking on your door again!
Mr and Mrs W
I would like to thank Kirsten and Pat for your excellent professional service in this transaction on our behalf and which further cements an already strong relationship with your firm, which we have experienced over the years, both on a personal and professional basis.
Mr Hugh Birley
We've been clients of Tees all our lives, and my grandmother and great-grandfather before me. We've been looked after by the ever-efficient Allan Wright, Cathy Izzard and Eleanor Worby. Each of them have been efficient, effective, pleasant to deal with and unfazed by our disorganisation!
Mr and Mrs Baker
Thank you for the excellent service and for dealing so promptly with matters as they arose. We felt that the three of you made an excellent team and were impressed that each of you knew precisely the stage we were at, when we telephoned or wrote to you.
Hilary and John Curley
I just wanted to say a big thank you for the help and practical support and advice you gave throughout what was a protracted selling experience! With a difficult buyer, it was only your level headed advice and direction that stopped me from pulling out at what would have been the wrong time!
My house purchase was fraught with issues and delays. Natacha did an amazing job at keeping things going, indeed our seller's estate agent said that he had never seen a solicitor work so hard for so long to make sure a deal went through. She has been amazing and kept me informed throughout.
Mr. and Mrs. P
Thank you to you and your team for assisting us with both our purchase and sale. You and your team have been the most professional and efficient team we have ever come across and given that we both deal with conveyancers on a regular basis it is a real testimony to you.
I was always kept informed of the progress of the transaction by the friendly and efficient Conveyancing Team at Tees. There was always someone available to answer my questions. All in all, a service well worth the very reasonable fee. Thank you very much Tees for a stress-free process.
Mr Lawrance Lucas
I'm very grateful for the professional service that everyone at Tees has shown me: Cathy Izzard who drew up my late mother’s Will and obtained probate; Toni Chalmers-Smith for care fees planning and Allan Wright for the conveyancing. They're knowledgeable, approachable and have empathy.