Law Society advice to budding homeowners as hefty deposit demand eases

The Law Society is advising budding homeowners to seek advice from a solicitor before purchasing a property.

The advice comes as Britain emerges out of recession and lenders are beginning to offer cheaper home loans for those with smaller deposits, compared to the demand for 25% deposits two years ago . The recommendation coincides with a Law Society information campaign which has been launched to make consumers in England and Wales aware of how solicitors can help them solve a wide range of problems.

 The number of different mortgage products on the market has almost doubled from January to May, while there has been a significant increase in the availability of mortgages for buyers with deposits of just 15 per cent or 20 per cent.

The Law society is warning potential homebuyers to obtain expert legal advice in order to avoid any potential problems and to protect their best interests at every step.

Solicitors are trained experts at conveyancing, the legal process of transferring the ownership of the property from the existing owner to the buyer, and are highly experienced in negotiations and dealings with surveyors and lenders.

 Home-buying in Britain can be a notoriously drawn-out and frustrating business however conveyancing solicitors are qualified in all areas of property law and will check every legal aspect of the sale, from the point of making an offer to getting the keys to the door.

Not only do solicitors offer the best advice and service, helping to make the home-buying experience as easy and problem-free as possible, they will help to avoid most of the difficulties.

Your solicitor will conduct all the necessary local authority searches and enquiries with the local authority. These will help to reveal any planning issues affecting the property, such as road improvements and details of any planning permission granted on the property. Your solicitor will also carry out flooding, mining and contaminated land searches if necessary.

If the property is leasehold (particularly common when buying a flat), there will be detailed lease terms and conditions. Your solicitor will check these carefully.

Law Society President Robert Heslett says: "Until recently, only borrowers with generous deposits were eligible for reduced mortgage rates but as the market has improved, borrowers with smaller deposits are also being offered more competitive deals. Budding homeowners who choose to take advantage of these deals will benefit from a legal professional to help them in the process of buying their property. It is a delicate and sometimes complex matter and the advice of a solicitor at an early stage could prevent home buyers from losing out in the long run."

Please do not hesitate to contact one of our expert conveyancing lawyers for advice in relation to the above article.

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