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DIY conveyancing


DIY conveyancing or ‘Do It Yourself’ conveyancing is when a seller and or buyer handle the conveyancing procedure themselves. This involves drafting the necessary contracts and carrying out all the enquiries that come with the sale and purchase of land.

The benefits of DIY conveyancing

A number of people without any legal background have now started taking on the work of self-conveyancing and end up saving themselves money. Conveyancing was for a long time the province of solicitors or licensed conveyancers, but the Land Registration Act now allows the possibility of self-conveyancing by private individuals.

Having specialist knowledge or a relevant degree is not a requirement for self-conveyancing although you should be prepared to put in a lot of time and patience.

One main benefit of self-conveyancing is the determination with which you will take up your case depending on the urgency of it. Self-conveyancing is not as easy as it may sound; however, it is possible, due to the main proportion of it being conducted through standard search forms which will be available to you at most legal stationers.

It is essential that you carry out all the steps a qualified solicitor would do in undertaking this job.

DIY conveyancing is obviously cheaper than instructing an expert to carry out the conveyancing. Money can be saved on experts’ and agents’ fees. However, the money saved is not that substantial when you consider the risks associated with doing it yourself.

The dangers of DIY conveyancing

Whether you are a buyer or a seller, you are taking a big risk if you get involved in DIY conveyancing. If you do your conveyancing yourself, you are personally liable if things go wrong.

This means that if you make any mistakes in the procedure, the other party can sue you personally. If you have made a major mistake, you may face a huge compensation pay-out. At least if you instruct a solicitor and they make a mistake, they are liable, not you.

There are other disadvantages of DIY conveyancing. It is very time consuming. If you are working full time, it is unlikely that you will have enough time to dedicate to it. The average sale of a house takes at least 6-8 weeks to complete. In addition to this there are a lot of forms and documents to complete.

Given the verbose legal language used in these documents, it is not uncommon to make mistakes if you are not legally trained.

Problems may arise in:

  • The lease
  • The contract

These are two areas in which solicitors use all of their expertise and knowledge, hence requiring you to pay special attention to the details of the two documents. They are often highly complex, and without previous experience are extremely complicated.

Some disadvantages of self conveyancing include:

  • Paying huge amounts of money in case of big errors and a possibility of being sued later on
  • Private individuals do not usually have negligence insurance which solicitors and licensed conveyancers do have

If you are unsure of the legal intricacies of the conveyancing process, it is not recommended to attempt it alone. Failure to complete the relevant process can result in much higher fees than the cost of paying a solicitor to undertake the process on your behalf.

For more advice on how a house transfer works, see our page on residential conveyancing.

Are you looking for a professional solicitor to handle your conveyancing matters, at a competitive price? Contact Law can put you in touch with a cost-effective conveyancing solicitor to ensure the process runs smoothly. Please call us on 0808 129 5758 or complete the web-form above.

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