Solicitors Vs Conveyancers
The conveyancing industry is now a highly competitive market. While the prices for performing conveyancing work used to be regulated, once that regulation was abolished, the increased presence of Conveyancers and the continued undercutting of competitors’ prices has resulted in the widespread undervaluing of an important legal service which requires a considerable level of experience and expertise.
The resulting situation disadvantages everyone, particularly the client (you). For example, in an attempt to provide you with the cheapest quote, some Solicitors or Conveyancers might reduce the number of government searches in relation to your new property to a bare minimum. While you may have saved $200, you remain unaware of a possible proposal to acquire part, or all of your property, which might end up costing you tens of thousands of dollars .
In addition, aggressive marketing by some Conveyancers provides the community with incorrect information about the role of Solicitors in conveyancing. The writer recently read the following statement on a Conveyancer’s website with shock:
“The difference between a solicitor and a conveyancer is that a solicitor can go to Court whereas a conveyancer cannot…. Solicitors who can also act for you in relation to a Conveyancing transaction can be held up in Court or conferences and may not have the time to meet your needs“.
This statement is grossly misleading.
If you think it’s expensive to hire a Professional, wait until you hire an amateur.
Benefits of Engaging a Solicitor for your Conveyancing
It is in your best interests to instruct a Solicitor, rather than a Conveyancer, to act on your behalf because:
- Solicitors can assist you with all legal matters associated with the sale or purchase of real property.
- A good Solicitor will prevent problems not create them.
- Solicitors are bound by much more onerous ethical and professional responsibilities and owe a greater duty of care to their clients than Conveyancers.
- Most Solicitors offer greater expertise and experience of the law (and, therefore, a better service and higher accountability).
- Solicitors are better equipped to deal with pre-contractual negotiations and disputes.
- Solicitors are also qualified and required to advise you broadly in relation to contract and property law, asset structuring, asset protection, estate planning and tax law issues when engaged to act in relation to a property transaction.
Limitations of Engaging a Conveyancer
- Conveyancers are not licensed to advise on areas of law that are beyond “conveyancing work“, as defined in the Conveyancers Licensing Act 2003.
- Conveyancers must cease to act for a person as soon as the matter moves beyond “conveyancing work“, or the client requires legal advice on areas of law which are outside of the scope of “conveyancing work” but related to their sale or purchase. When this happens, the Conveyancer must refer you to a Solicitor for advice.
- Conveyancers must cease to act for a person if legal proceedings need to be commenced or defended, most likely for breach of the Contract. This means that just as ‘the going gets tough‘ the Conveyancer you had entrusted with your property transaction can no longer help you.
- If a problem or legal issue arises during your purchase a Conveyancer will refer you to a Solicitor for legal advice. If this happens any costs saving will quickly be lost as a result of the Solicitor needing to review the Contract and the Conveyancer’s file in order to properly give advice.
- Because most Conveyancers’ costs are lower, they require more files to ensure the continuance of their business. As a result, you may not receive the same amount of attention as they would with a Solicitor.
What’s in Price?
The price of a service can sometimes be a good indicator of the quality of service you can expect to receive from a professional. Conveyancers (and some Solicitors) often charge a reduced fee so their business model depends on volume not quality of service.
Because most Conveyancers’ costs are lower, they require more files to ensure the continuance of their business. As a result, you may not receive the same amount of attention as you would with a Solicitor, particularly as a Solicitor has a greater duty of care to you and greater ethical obligations to the wider community than a Conveyancer.
Why Use Roberts Legal for your Conveyancing
At Roberts Legal, we provide a superior conveyancing service at a reasonable price. All of our Conveyancing Files are managed directly by qualified Solicitors.
To engage us to assist you with your sale or purchase or to obtain a quote simply call us on 02 4952 3901.
For more information about our Conveyancing Service or why you should use Roberts Legal call us or download ‘The Ultimate Conveyancing Guide‘.
The Ultimate Conveyancing Guide
The Ultimate Conveyancing Guide is a comprehensive step-by-step guide to buying residential property in New South Wales.
The aim of this Guide is to assist buyers to more fully prepare themselves to buy residential property and understand the legal issues and procedures involved. Read more…