Choosing a conveyancing solicitor is a key – but often overlooked – part of buying or selling your home.

A report on home moving trends gave the feedback of 5,400 property purchasers, who kindly gave their insights into their home moves to tell you the do’s and dont’s of choosing your conveyancing solicitor. We have compiled the key facts for you below.

How do you start selecting a solicitor?

It’s really helpful to be recommended to a conveyancing solicitor by a friend or family member, and you shouldn’t ignore them – in fact 55% of purchasers who used their friend’s conveyancer rated them at 9 or 10 out of 10! This compares with 30% for Estate Agents’ recommendations, where 37% rated the Conveyancer between 0 and 6 out of 10.

At Cunningtons we’ll say a big ‘thank you for using us’ by giving a 10% discount card for using us in future transactions. These discounts are transferable, so if you have a great experience you should let your friends know, and they’ll like you even more for having recommended a quality solicitor and getting them a great price.

Should I trust my Estate Agent’s recommendation?

However, more often than not, purchasers will choose the conveyancer that their Estate Agent has recommended. It is important to note that Estate Agents deal with solicitors every day and sometimes have better working relationships with some than others, and their recommendation should help reduce the time to completion.

At Cunningtons we work very closely with some of the nation’s leading Estate Agents and property developers, and Agents near to our offices are often recommending us. This is because we always make sure your Estate Agent is kept updated so that we can work together and be pro-active in getting you moved – this saves both you and your Agent from having to chase us for updates.

Can I expect to be kept up-to-date with progress throughout the move?

We know from this survey that 70% of clients want an update at least weekly, even if there is nothing new to report. Furthermore, 60% of home movers would prefer this update by email or online.

At Cunningtons we make sure you get the best of both – when there is an update, we’ll ping you an email. You can also log-in to your personal account on our website 24/7 to check the progress on your property move – but if you are like the other 40% who still wish to talk to their conveyancing solicitor, you will have their direct dial and email address, so you can always get in touch even if you can’t come in to see us.

Should I shop online for a conveyancing solicitor?

In an increasingly digital age, there has been a trend in recent years to shop online for a conveyancer to handle the sale and/or purchase of your property. Firms like these are often able to undercut their competition because they don’t have to pay for a high street branch. While the savings can be attractive, the low fees often force these companies to take on high case-loads, and you can often feel like a number rather than a client.

So if you just plump for the cheapest online conveyancer you can’t expect to have a personal relationship with the firm that is handling your sale!

In more recent times home movers have been stepping away from this process, and while 8% still chose an online conveyancer last year, more than half of these would not recommend it, and a quarter rated their conveyancing solicitor’s performance at 0 out of 10!

How important is ‘value for money’ in conveyancing fees when choosing a solicitor?

As home movers increasingly demand value for money, they are finding that you really do get what you pay for. More than three quarters (77%) of those asked felt that price was ‘not very’ or ‘really not’ important (a staggering rise from 15% the previous year!) and only 1 in 10 will now opt for the cheapest quotation they find.

Even first-time buyers are appreciating value for money, and not one person in their 20s thought price was ‘important’ and none chose the cheapest conveyancer. In fact, 7 out of 10 went so far as to say that price was ‘really not important’; they would prefer to make sure they had a safe transaction.

Cunningtons conveyancing solicitors share this belief – you get what you pay for and you shouldn’t forget that your property is an important and valuable asset. The services of our award-winning conveyancing solicitors are always priced competitively with fixed fees, and our testimonials speak for themselves.

So what is important when making my choice?

The most important part of choosing your conveyancing solicitor is to consider who is at the end of the phone. Communication is a key factor for 80% of clients, and good communication can make your move a lot less stressful.

At Cunningtons we pride ourselves on the accessibility of our solicitors. Unlike some other firms, we won’t charge you if we need to speak to you on the phone or write a letter to keep you updated, and our 24/7 online tracking system takes the stress out of moving. As if that wasn’t enough, our open-door policy lets you come in and see someone – our head office in Braintree is even open on a Saturday!

You can speak to your conveyancing solicitor by phone or face-to-face at any of your branches in Braintree, Brighton, Chelmsford, Croydon, HornchurchSolihull or Wickford.

So when you are choosing your Conveyancing Solicitor, ask Cunningtons for a fixed-fee quote. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how inexpensive your professional conveyancing solicitor can be. 

* The data in this article was research provided by the tm groups Home Moving Trends 2015 report


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