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The Conveyancing Role with Remortages

By: Liz Lennox - Updated: 14 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
Secured Fixed Rate Conveyancer Do It

A remortgage is simply the word used to change who loans you the money SECURED on it. There are a number of reasons to do this; you may want to raise extra money for home improvements; you may be coming to the end of your FIXED RATE period and need to get a new deal. Whatever the reason this is one time when you will have to use a CONVEYANCER. There is no way around it so don't even try to DO IT YOURSELF.

Just a Case of Changing the Deeds?

Most clients think that a remortgage is just a case of swapping the MORTGAGE LENDERS name on the deed. It isn't. Your new lender knows nothing about the property and doesn't know you so as far as they are concerned you may as well be BUYING the house.

The Conveyancer's Job

There may be a lot less paperwork than if you were buying the house from scratch but the same checks and SEARCHES need to be done as if you were. So the conveyancer needs to:

  • Check that the title is correct and that there are no defects
  • Apply for new searches and check the results against those you had done when you bought the house.
  • Find out from you if any changes have been made to the property which would have required local authority permission

And this is all before they have even looked at your mortgage offer!

Checks and Balances

Once your conveyancer is happy that there have been no adverse changes to the property or the title they can turn their attention to the new mortgage offer. They will have to make sure that you are aware of the terms of the mortgage and the new amount you are borrowing. They will also have to make sure that the lender is happy with any idiosyncrasies of the title.

But how long will it take

In an ideal world a remortgage should take no more than a couple of weeks to go through, but the conveyancing world is far from ideal and the transaction can only take as long as the slowest element; if the local searches in your area are taking 6 weeks to be returned then it is likely to take at least 8 weeks for your remortgage to complete. There are some lenders that will accept indemnity insurance instead of a local search but these are few and far between.

The reason for the seemingly inordinate length of time is not laziness. Once any outstanding item is received it needs to be checked thoroughly, any adverse matters reported to the lender and then the conveyancer needs to give your new lender at least a weeks notice for the release of funds.

Will the Mortgagees Conveyancers Act Any Faster?

It is highly unlikely that they will get it through faster for you as they have to do exactly the same job. You also need to bear in mind that, chances are, you will not be paying their fee; the mortgagee will be. Therefore technically, you are not their client, the mortgagee is. This does not mean that they do not owe you a duty of care and that they must make sure they get it right for you, they just won't view you with the same priority as they will the mortgage company (who probably puts all of their remortgage business through them and therefore pays them a lot of money per year - Just something to bear in mind).

It may be that the mortgage product you are getting requires you to use their conveyancers; there is nothing illegal in this and while you lose the option to choose your own representative, you will likely be getting a very good deal.

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