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Losing the Stable – Conveyancing at Christmas

It is quite clear that if Mary and Joseph had asked

“National Bulk Conveyancing Rapid Factory Law” in Rome to assist them in their purchase of a stable in Bethlehem of Judea, to accommodate them over the winter of the year 0, whilst Mary rested awaiting the arrival of her first born, that there was a good risk he might have been a toddler before completion occurred and what’s more, they might never have been told why, and had to pay over more denarii than they were quoted in the first place.

Now, if they had instructed those old stuffy Nazareth high street solicitors where Mr Bloggs had done conveyancing, man and boy, for thirty years, they could have called in to see him, parked their donkey outside, been offered mince pies and coffee and been resting on the stable straw for Christmas too.

Over the past few years, there has been a trend in conveyancing work going away from high street firms of solicitors to larger factory firms where it is handled by poorly trained clerks and computer processes because of a belief that you don’t need a solicitor these days for that. In the same way, one could say that you don’t need a surgeon to carry out an operation, just a sharp knife, a search engine and some towels for the blood!

A recent finding in a report entitled ” Losing the Plot – Residential Complaints and their Causes”, from the Legal Services Ombudsman, suggested that conveyancing factories generate almost one in five legal complaints to his office – that is not conveyancing itself, but the factories who do it. Problems stem from fees being higher than those quoted, poor service, poor advice, a failure to follow instructions and delay without explanation.

It is even worse where it is “no move, no fee” because the organisation is incentivised to do nothing until there is a locked in deal and, when factories focus on low fees, in order to generate profits they need large volumes and when volumes are large service frequently goes out of the stable window.

We would advise all clients who are thinking about buying and selling next year to keep it local, keep it high quality, keep it face to face, and keep it simple – instruct Salmons!!

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