Alistair Millar, a conveyancing lawyer at Tallents Solicitors in Southwell explains the key legal procedures that must be dealt with before completion of the purchase can take place. When buying your home, you’ll hear the word ‘conveyancing’ a lot, but what exactly is it? Says Alistair: “It’s worth knowing some of the key procedures that must occur before completion can take place. The main ones are as follows:   “Evidence of title/contract The vendor’s solicitor will send your solicitor a copy of the deeds or a summary of their content. If your solicitor has any questions he will make enquiries before contract.  He will also carry out the necessary searches.   “Draft transfer/conveyance The vendors’ solicitor will send your solicitor a draft transfer (for registered property) or conveyance (for unregistered property). This is the deed, which passes the vendors’ interest in the property to you.   “Mortgages Your solicitor will write to your mortgage lender to ensure that the mortgage money is available in time for completion.   “Engrossment of transfer or conveyance When both solicitors are satisfied with the terms of the deed it will be ‘engrossed’, i.e. a final version will be prepared for signature by both sides.   “Signing of final documents You will be asked to sign the final documents and provide a banker’s draft (or, more often these days, a telegraphic transfer) for any further money required to fund completion over and above your mortgage advance.   “Final searches Your solicitor will conduct a final Land Registry search in case the vendor has just been declared bankrupt (in which case the property would no longer be his to sell) and to ensure that no last minute charges have been registered against the property. These could affect the mortgage lender’s security.
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