Why choose Henriques Griffiths’ residential property solicitors?
Property transactions are often regarded as one of life’s most stressful experiences. With so much to do in a short space of time, it’s only natural – after all, property is one of the most significant financial commitments we can make. With this in mind, our dedicated solicitors have developed a service that aims to take the weight off your shoulders.
So how do we do it?
At Henriques Griffiths, we believe that the conveyancing process should bring excitement, not frustration. By instructing one of our specialist residential property solicitors, you can guarantee a smooth service from start to finish. We treat each of our clients’ property transactions as if they were our own, working meticulously to ensure each document has been thoroughly assessed and each search result is satisfactory. Where issues arise, we will go above and beyond to resolve them in a timely manner to prevent delays.
Our first step will be to gain a detailed understanding of the transaction and property in question in order to establish the volume of legal work involved. From here, we can provide you with a detailed quote for our fees. If there is no change to your situation, the fee we charge upon completion will not differ from the one we have quoted. This transparency is particularly beneficial during a time where certainty on costs is paramount to those involved.
From our vast experience working with a diverse client-base throughout Bristol and beyond, we have refined our conveyancing service to ensure each individual receives the same level of care and attention every step of the way. We know that the last thing you need is to be kept in the dark in regards to your transaction, so you can count on our residential property solicitors to keep you updated with each new development as it happens.
How can our residential property solicitors help you?
Boasting a wealth of knowledge and experience across the entire spectrum of residential property law, our team can assist and advise on the following:
If you’ve decided to purchase or sell your home, choosing a specialist property solicitor is essential to protect your interests and ensure a speedy transaction. Whether you’re upgrading your flat to a family home or your sights are set on a fixer-upper, you can count on our dedicated team to provide a seamless and reliable service.
Extending your lease can be a complicated, costly and time-consuming process, so it pays to be prepared. In order to determine whether the lease extension is worth the effort and expense, it’s essential to seek specialist advice from an expert residential property solicitor. We will always take the time to assess your unique circumstances to determine the best approach before assisting you in negotiating with the freeholder.
Buying and selling land
Our solicitors have extensive experience in buying and selling land and agricultural property – whether by auction, private treaty or tender. With close ties across the farming community in the South West, our specialist knowledge of land and agricultural transactions will help us provide you with both strategic advice and expert legal guidance through your purchase or sale.
The legal work involved with a new build property often differs slightly from that of an existing house: in many cases, house-builders and associations will give the buyer only 4-6 weeks between reserving a property and exchanging contracts. This gives the buyer’s solicitor a very small window in which to assess the property and ensure there are no issues prior to completion.
If you have reserved a new build property and are seeking a specialist to complete your transaction in a timely manner, get in touch with our team today.
Help to buy
The government’s Help To Buy schemes are designed to help first time buyers on to the property ladder, and include various options: Shared Ownership, the Help to Buy ISA or the Help To Buy Equity Loan.
Many of our clients purchasing property through the Help To Buy scheme will require a tailored approach to their conveyancing and expert advice as to whether buying through these schemes is financially worthwhile. If you have questions regarding a Help to Buy scheme or are seeking a quote for your transaction, get in touch with our residential property solicitors today.
Clients often seek advice from our residential property solicitors in regards to remortgaging; a tactic used by property owners to save on costs by getting a better rate mortgage. Remortgaging will either allow you to reduce your monthly payments or to raise capital, both proving as attractive options for homeowners. Whatever your reasons for remortgaging, our solicitors will provide step-by-step guidance throughout the process.
Conveyancing and residential property FAQs
What are the stages of conveyancing?
There are three main stages to buying or selling a property:
- Offer and acceptance
- Exchange of contracts
The process will differ depending on whether you are buying or selling:
Offer and acceptance
The conveyancing process officially begins once the buyer has made an offer on a property which has been accepted by the seller. At this stage, the transaction will be “subject to contract”. This means your agreement is not yet legally binding and either party can back out at any time without incurring penalties (other than your personal costs).
Between offer/acceptance and exchange of contracts, the seller will provide the draft contracts and further information about the property; the buyer will conduct their own investigations into the property and secure their mortgage.
Exchange of contracts
Once the buyer is happy to proceed with the sale, they will pay the deposit and sign and exchange contracts with the seller. Once contracts are exchanged, the transaction becomes legally binding and neither party can back out without incurring penalties.
Completion occurs is when ownership of the property officially changes hands. It usually happens a few weeks after exchange. Upon the completion date, the buyer’s solicitor will transfer the rest of the purchase monies, arrange payment of Stamp Duty (if payable), and apply to the Land Registry to register the new ownership; the seller’s solicitor will redeem the seller’s mortgage (if they have one).
How long does conveyancing take?
The time it takes to complete your conveyancing will ultimately depend on the individual circumstances of your case. For example, if there are issues with the buyer’s searches and investigations or there is a chain, the process is likely to take longer than a straightforward, chain-free sale/purchase.
We can provide a tailored time estimate but generally, conveyancing (from our instruction to completion) takes around 8-12 weeks.
What is the difference between freehold and leasehold?
Freehold and leasehold are ways you can own property in the UK.
Freehold means you own the entirety of your home outright, including the ground it stands on. You do not have to pay ground rent to any other person but you will be responsible for maintaining the property. Your ownership will only end if you sell/gift the property or you die.
Leasehold means you own a long lease to occupy the property for a certain number of years (up to 999 years). The ground the property stands on and the surrounding building (if you live in a flat) belongs to a separate freeholder, or landlord, to whom you will likely pay rent and service charges.
It is important to know the difference between freehold and leasehold when buying, selling or otherwise dealing with residential property because it affects the way you can enjoy your home. For example, leaseholders usually have to gain permission to make alterations but are often not responsible for things like maintaining the roof. Freeholders can make any changes they want (subject to covenants, local planning laws and other restrictions) but are responsible for maintaining the entire building.
Additionally, if you own a leasehold, your ownership is not perpetual and as the lease term decreases, the value of the property will decrease. Leaseholders do have the right to extend their lease or even purchase the freehold, however, this can be a costly process.
We can provide in-depth advice about the differences between freehold and leasehold as well as providing services such as:
- Leasehold extension
- Leasehold enfranchisement (purchasing the freehold to your home)
Should you use a local solicitor for conveyancing?
The most important aspect you should consider is whether your solicitor has the right legal expertise to handle your transaction.
We are Conveyancing Quality Scheme accredited by the Law Society for our high level of knowledge and excellent customer service. We have a strong track record of helping clients complete their sale or purchase efficiently, cost-effectively, and within a reasonable timeframe.
Based in Bristol and Winterbourne, we have extensive knowledge of the area and local factors which might affect your transaction. However, regardless of your location, we address each case with meticulous attention to detail to ensure every aspect of your sale or purchase is accurately completed.
Contact our residential conveyancing solicitors in Bristol
Get in touch with our residential property solicitors in Bristol by giving us a call at your local branch near central Bristol or in Winterbourne or fill in our simple online enquiry form for a quick response.