Agents’ ‘irrelevant enquiries’ hinder conveyancing process – claim

Clients pandering for reassurance was the third most cited reason for delays in conveyancing transactions followed by solicitors’ ‘other’ requests.


Dealing with estate agents and taking irrelevant enquiries are the biggest bugbears conveyancers face when it comes to the home buying and selling process, a recent poll reveals.

‘Clients pandering for reassurance’ was the third most cited reason for delays in conveyancing transactions followed by solicitors’ ‘other’ requests.

A snapshot poll, which appeared in Today’s Conveyancer, asked: “What has been the biggest source of delay in conveyancing transactions with which you’ve been involved of late?”

Irrelevant enquiries topped the responses (36%), followed by dealings with estate agents (34%), clients needing reassurance (22%) and solicitors’ other requests (6%) and other (2%).”

The results of the survey will come as no surprise to many given recent stories highlighting a lack of communication between estate agents and conveyancers that often hold up the home-buying process.

Just last week property pundit and PR man Russell Quirk compared estate agents and conveyancers working together “like two footballers running towards the same goal arguing with each other, rather than working together”.


But a lot of this can be avoided by following The Law Society’s Conveyancing Protocol which states to only raise “specific additional enquiries required to clarify issues arising out of the documents submitted, or which are relevant to the title, existing or planned use, nature or location of the property or which the buyer has expressly requested.”

And it adds: “Do not raise any additional enquiries about the state and condition of the building unless arising out of your conveyancing search results, your buyer’s own enquiries, inspection or their surveyor’s report.

“Indiscriminate use of ‘standard’ additional enquiries may constitute a breach of this Protocol. If such enquiries are submitted, they are not required to be dealt with by the seller/seller’s conveyancer. The seller’s conveyancer does not need to obtain the seller’s answer to any enquiry which seeks opinion rather than fact.”

Download a copy of The Law Society’s Conveyancing Protocol here.

One Comment

  1. When selling my last house, a delay was caused by the buyers solicitor on a minor matter (all documents clearly stated that fuel would be at valuation but the solicitor claimed is was not normal practice) and this was not even raised with the buyer. This is despite the buyer being keen to exchange promptly. COMMUNICATION between all parties could greatly improve matters.

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