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Information > Finance & Legal > Conveyancing Solicitors
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What is Conveyancing?

: n. The legal transfer of ownership of land or buildings from one person to another, a Solicitor or Legal Executive who undertakes the legal and administrative work associated with purchasing and selling property or land

The legal transaction of conveying a house is often thought of as nothing more than a simple routine through which Solicitors can make some money.

Not all CONCEYANCING SOLICITORS are knowledgeable about the buy to let market or BMV purchasing as some only ever deal with day to day residential transactions. The choice of which CONVEYANCING SOLICITOR is even more important when buying and selling investment property and can be crucial to the Investors success. Purchasing buy to let investment properties requires a lot of time and focus and it is important that the CONVEYANCING SOLICITOR is knowledgeable of the various schemes, particularly if the property is being purchased below market value.

The internet has allowed the cost of Conveyancing to be more competitive; however, this is not necessarily a good thing. As prices have fallen, the number and quality of conveyance departments have also been reduced. Price has dictated that each partner needs to take on an excessively large caseload thereby devoting less time to each individual case. Also, many solicitors quote very low headline prices but hide away many hundreds of pounds of standard and compulsory extras in the small print or under a vague supplemental fee section. This may include: VAT, dealing with your mortgage lender & filling in your Stamp Duty Land Tax return, telegraphic transfer charges.

Although specialist professional services can be more expensive, they are well worth the cost to successfully complete the purchase and to resolve any possible problems.

It is worth finding out if the conveyance solicitor practice has more than one partner, i.e. not a sole practitioner as some mortgage lenders are not able to use sole practitioners. And of course most importantly make sure you are getting good value for money. Ensure you get a full quotation with a full breakdown of costs.

The conveyance process starts after an offer has been made and accepted for a property, and solicitors' details have been exchanged by the two parties. It is irrelevant whether you are buying or selling through an agent or privately.

So what exactly does the CONVEYANCING SOLICITOR do for their money?

  • Make searches – local searches including, water search, environmental search, commons registration, index map search and any other appropriate
  • Examine draft Contract documents
  • Investigate the Title
  • Send copies of relevant documents to Buyer for consideration
  • Approve Contract and send any enquiries to the Sellers Solicitor]
  • Check replies to enquiries from Sellers Solicitor and results of Searches
  • Check mortgage instructions
  • Arrange for Buyer to sign Contract, mortgage documents and provide any deposit
  • Check that provisions for Buildings Insurance has been put in force


  • Draft Transfer and send to Sellers Solicitors with completion information and requisitions on Title form
  • Examine replies to completion information and requisitions on the Title form
  • Engross the Transfer and obtain Buyers signature
  • Send Transfer to Sellers Solicitor for signature
  • Carry out pre-completion searches – Land Registry Search OS1 and OS2 for a Registered Title, search K15 for an Unregistered
  • Title, bankruptcy search, Company search
  • Submit Certificate of Title
  • Prepare and supply Completion Statement to Buyer requesting any monies required
  • Check results of pre-completion searches
  • Check all funds for completion received from the Buyer and or Mortgage Lender


  • Check Seller has signed Transfer
  • Obtain Sellers Solicitors undertaking to discharge any mortgages
  • Pay balance purchase monies to Sellers Solicitor
  • Check that Transfer, Title Deeds, Land or Charge Certificate and undertaking to redeem Mortgage has been received from the Sellers Solicitor
  • Check Contract, enquiries, requisitions and correspondence for any additional completion requirements
  • Ask Sellers Solicitor to date Transfer and release the keys
  • Date any mortgage documents


  • Submit Land Transaction Return to Inland Revenue
  • Give Notice relating to any Life Policies required for Mortgage
  • Prepare and send Form AP1 or FR1 to the Land Registry
  • Check the Title Information Document when sent by the Land Registry
  • Send copies of Buyers Title to them for their record together with Deeds not required by lender
  • Confirm registration of Title to the mortgage lender

If the general public knew how many unqualified secretaries dealt with their entire conveyance transaction, there would be uproar!



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