No sale no fee conveyancing explained
We’ve all seen the television adverts promoting no win-no fee representation. It sounds attractive, but do you actually understand the concept of a no win-no fee arrangement?
Conveyancing no sale no fee agreement
Put simply, a conveyancing no win no fee agreement means your solicitor will take on your claim or process knowing that if they do not ‘win’ (or complete the deal), you would not have to pay for their services.
This same concept applies to the conveyancing process. Many reputable conveyancing solicitors will offer a ‘no sale, no legal fee’ service. This is particularly useful in the current financial climate where house moves and moving chains fall through on a more regular basis. At a time when every penny counts, no-sale-no-fee conveyancing is of great help to avoid hefty financial outlay on a transaction that doesn’t come to fruition. You may be asked to pay a small sum upfront to cover the risk of no-sale-no-fee.
The Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) came into play in 1995 following the end of the Government’s legal aid system particularly for Personal Injury cases. As a result, it is now at the solicitor’s discretion to decide whether or not they take your case on a no win-no fee basis.
No win - no fee should not be confused with all-inclusive conveyancing packages. These tend to be a fixed sum that includes the legal fees, the expenses and dibursements.
Online conveyancing services are the best way to secure a no move-no fee arrangement. Their services are available in much the same way as traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ solicitors, but can be significantly cheaper when combined with a no sale-no fee conveyancing guarantee. Online conveyancing correspondence is, unsurprisingly, conducted across the internet via email and often the solicitors' case management systems.
Reasons for a house move falling through
Gazumping – For buyers, gazumping is one of the biggest potential reasons for a house move falling through. Should the seller accept a better offer from another potential buyer your hopes and dreams could be left on the scrap heap. This is an issue particularly with a fluctuating housing market which can attract more buyers than sellers when prices are attractive.
Broken chain – The likelihood of completing your house sale or purchase is reduced if you are involved in a whole chain of buyers and sellers, ie you cannot complete your house purchase until your own house is sold, but the buyer of your current house can’t buy until they’ve sold their own house and so on. If their house sale does fall through your own purchase is likely to be affected. That’s why sellers are much more inclined to accept your offer if you are not part of a chain.
Contract signatures – In some instances sellers may accept offers from two or more potential buyers, in which case the seller may send contracts to more than one set of buyers. In this instance the buyers who can sign the contract and get the deposit sent across via their conveyancing solicitor quickest will ultimately seal the deal.
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Updated August 2020
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