Property Services

With a broad range of expertise across the department from property conveyancing to residential disputes, Gardner Croft offer a quality service for all types of residential property matters.

Property Conveyancing Solicitors In Canterbury

Let our specialist conveyancing solicitors help manage your conveyancing needs.
– Your conveyancing will be dealt with by a qualified lawyer.
– We provide a personal service with a local, experienced and dedicated team.
– We aim to minimise the stress of your move.

We offer a personal conveyancing services when assisting with the sales and purchase of all property and keep you informed and up to date throughout the transaction. All of our team our qualified lawyers.

With property being such a significant factor in personal and family wealth planning our experienced team also work closely with your financial advisors and the Private Client Department to offer a broader service where appropriate.

Meet The Team

Tim Townsend

Position: Partner
Work Area: Property Serv...
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Helen Knowles

Position: Senior Conveyancer
Work Area: Property Serv...
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Lesley Saunders

Position: Licensed Conveyancer
Work Area: Property Serv...
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Frequently Asked Questions

Can my Solicitor act for my mortgage lender as well as me?

In the majority of cases we can act for both you and your mortgage lender. The exception to this is where we act for the buyer and seller or where your lender is a private or non high street lender and we are not on their panel of solicitors. Gardner Croft are on the majority of high street lenders panels and are also panel solicitors for some less popular and specialist lenders such as those specialising in buy to let properties only. Again the Solicitors Regulation Authority and Law Society have strict rules in place to avoid what they call ‘conflicts of interest’ with lenders and clients. This tends to happen where a client may have not fully disclosed their personal circumstances to their lender and ask the solicitor not to disclose those. Common examples include where the lender is not aware you are borrowing money from a third party for the deposit or the deposit is being gifted to you by parents, grandparents etc or where you have been declared bankrupt. The solicitor is under an obligation to your lender to disclose to them anything which they feel may have impact on the lenders willingness to grant the loan and any request to withhold potentially relevant information will create a conflict of interest for the solicitor and they will have to cease to act for both you and the lender.

Can my Solicitor act for the Buyer and the seller at the same time?

The general answer is no. The Solicitors Regulation Authority and Law Society have strict rules in place to avoid what they call ‘conflicts of interest’. This is to ensure that the solicitor acting for you always acts in your best interests and puts you first. In very exceptional circumstances however the solicitor will be permitted to act for the buyer and seller but only when this will be for the benefit of both parties. This tends to be where the buyer does not need a mortgage and where the solicitor can show that both parties are aware of the potential conflict but will agree that they wish the firm to act for them both. The regulations require that this can only be considered where the seller and buyer are already long standing existing clients of the firm and where it can be clear that both parties are aware of the risks. The same solicitor will not be permitted to act for both parties and each solicitor will have to be separately supervised to ensure that they are not privy to personal information about the other client which they would not normally have access to if the client was represented by a solicitor outside of the firm. In addition the solicitors are not permitted to negotiate on behalf of their clients. Therefore any issues regarding price, surveys, fittings and contents, completion dates and timescales etc must be dealt with by the estate agents and the agents must be aware of the potential conflict of interest. Conflicts can also occur where clients ask their solicitor to withhold information which may have a detrimental effect on the transaction. In the event that a conflict occurs the solicitors for both parties will have to cease acting and new solicitors will have to be found.

What is freehold and leasehold?

Freehold means that you own the property and the land upon which it is built outright. There is no time limit as to your ownership. The property remains yours until you sell it or transfer it to someone else. Leasehold means that you own the property but not the land upon which it is built. The land is owned by the Landlord or freeholder. You will be granted a lease of the property for a set period of time after which time the property reverts to the Landlord. Leases vary in length but are usually 99 years or 125 years from the date they are granted. They can be transferred from person to person (this is called assignment) and can also be extended either by agreement or by law.

Joint Ownership

Where more than one person is purchasing a property, you need to consider how you wish to own the property. There are two types of ownership: (a) Joint Tenants Where you own Joint Tenants then, in the event of the death of one owner, the remaining owner or owners receive the deceased’s share automatically. Thus if a husband and wife own the property as Joint Tenants, as is normally the case, and one of them dies, then the survivor automatically becomes the sole owner of the property. (b) Tenants in Common This arrangement differs in that if one joint owner dies that owner can leave his or her interest or share in the property to whoever they wish. If joint owners are unmarried or if either of both joint owners have been married before or have commitments to a child of a previous relationship then it is advisable to create a Tenancy in Common. It will also be very important that you review the provisions of any wills that have been made or if none have been made then consideration must be given to the making of wills.

When do I need to insure the property?

Unless the property is leasehold (in which case it is likely to be insured by the landlord) you must insure the property when you exchange contracts. You should ensure that you have obtained suitable quotations from insurers prior to this date and on the day of exchange your solicitor will call you to confirm that the exchange has taken place and that you have now entered into a binding contract to complete the purchase on a specified date. You then need to contact your insurers to put the policy in place immediately.

Have a question or need advice?

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