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  • FIRST POST
    • silversurf
    • By silversurf 20th Mar 17, 5:31 PM
    • 4Posts
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    silversurf
    New build property HTB - Solicitor
    • #1
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:31 PM
    New build property HTB - Solicitor 20th Mar 17 at 5:31 PM
    We have found this amazing new build flat and our offer got accepted.

    They are advising we have to use their recommended solicitor, because of past experience with customers not being great.

    Is it legal to insist to use only their recommended solicitor?, which feels like conflict of interest, since they meant to represent me.

    The sales representative advised it’s because we’re going through HTB.
Page 1
    • Futuristic
    • By Futuristic 20th Mar 17, 5:41 PM
    • 726 Posts
    • 362 Thanks
    Futuristic
    • #2
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:41 PM
    • #2
    • 20th Mar 17, 5:41 PM
    It is against the HTB terms the developers are contracted under to force you to use a specific legal advisor. They can however offer an incentive for you to use them.

    Quote when I asked the HCA/HTB:
    We can confirm that a developer can under no circumstances insist that a buyer use any particular mortgage adviser or firm. They can offer incentives but cannot restrict or refuse to take reservations from purchasers wishing to use other intermediaries or legal representatives.
    • alex_163163
    • By alex_163163 20th Mar 17, 7:50 PM
    • 205 Posts
    • 135 Thanks
    alex_163163
    • #3
    • 20th Mar 17, 7:50 PM
    • #3
    • 20th Mar 17, 7:50 PM
    No you can use whichever solicitors you choose.
    I've read that many people recommend finding your own and not using the developers. Like you say they are meant to work for you. I agree with them. But I would make it a point to ask any solicitors you get a quote from if they have good knowledge of the HTB process.

    Also agree with the above poster - they can offer incentives e.g. Money towards legal costs. Or as a friend of mine found out - carpets were included if they used the developers recommended firm.
    • silversurf
    • By silversurf 20th Mar 17, 8:17 PM
    • 4 Posts
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    silversurf
    • #4
    • 20th Mar 17, 8:17 PM
    • #4
    • 20th Mar 17, 8:17 PM
    Thank you guys for quick reply, had a feeling about this when they mentioned "you have to use this Solicitor". I will speak to their recommendation and compare quotes.

    Any ideas for first time buyer on HTB, would be a good quote? and what maximum cost I should expect?
    Last edited by silversurf; 20-03-2017 at 8:17 PM. Reason: typo
    • alex_163163
    • By alex_163163 20th Mar 17, 8:43 PM
    • 205 Posts
    • 135 Thanks
    alex_163163
    • #5
    • 20th Mar 17, 8:43 PM
    • #5
    • 20th Mar 17, 8:43 PM
    I think when I bought 3 years ago it cost about £1000, not including stamp duty.
    Unfortunately with HTB, I learned that there are extra fees that the solicitors add on to deal with the HTB part.
    And the same if you have a HTB ISA. They may charge a fee to deal with redeeming this.
    But I'd reckon about £1000 from my experience.

    Other forum users may be able to confirm this more for you.
    • Hedgehog99
    • By Hedgehog99 20th Mar 17, 11:34 PM
    • 1,367 Posts
    • 2,825 Thanks
    Hedgehog99
    • #6
    • 20th Mar 17, 11:34 PM
    • #6
    • 20th Mar 17, 11:34 PM

    The sales representative advised it’s because we’re going through HTB.
    Originally posted by silversurf
    s/he's getting commission if you do!

    Best to keep the finer details of your finances private and use a solicitor working solely for you. The legal fees incentive is because it's highly advantageous for them to know what you and your solicitor are doing.
    • silversurf
    • By silversurf 21st Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    • 4 Posts
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    silversurf
    • #7
    • 21st Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    • #7
    • 21st Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    Thank you Hedgehog99, I completely agree.

    Had a chance to compare different Solicitors and brokers, found amazing deals with best rate, which saves me a small fortune over the course of having the mortgage.

    Unfortunately the property developer can’t accept it, we have to use their recommendation only, they’re not willing to use someone else i found, its part of the development principle on HTB.

    I almost accepted defeat, so I called HTB line, they can’t do much about the developer whatever rule they have in place, but he agrees they shouldn’t be doing it.

    So I called HCA, echoing what @Futuristic had said, so they're sending an e-mail template on the matter to forward across, and willing to speak to the developer if needed.

    I am trying to imagine positive outcome to this but I can’t, I can see them hiking the price higher for using someone else, or rejecting my offer.

    Any advice?
    • Suits2017
    • By Suits2017 21st Mar 17, 7:00 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Suits2017
    • #8
    • 21st Mar 17, 7:00 PM
    • #8
    • 21st Mar 17, 7:00 PM
    I've just instructed a solicitor for HTB and they're charging £1700 buy thats including LBTT and I'm using a HBT ISA.
    • Futuristic
    • By Futuristic 21st Mar 17, 7:08 PM
    • 726 Posts
    • 362 Thanks
    Futuristic
    • #9
    • 21st Mar 17, 7:08 PM
    • #9
    • 21st Mar 17, 7:08 PM
    Solicitor can charge a maximum of £50+VAT for HTB ISA, HTB Equity Loan should be about £100. Also there might be land registration fee which is £270 (fixed cost to land registry).

    I'd say around £1100-1500 is fair depending on above.
    Last edited by Futuristic; 21-03-2017 at 7:11 PM.
    • silversurf
    • By silversurf 24th Mar 17, 12:07 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    silversurf
    Thank you for feedback everyone, I found a solicitor for £1,550, since I am using HTB and have HTB ISA.

    Unfortunately the property development doesn't want me to use my own Solicitor or broker, they're verbally advising its their principle for all HTB application, I have asked for this in writing, they said "we don't have it in writing, I am verbally telling you".

    So we decided to look somewhere else for our perfect home, and remove this developer off our list.

    Good thing from this incident that I am better prepared.
    • dhokes
    • By dhokes 24th Mar 17, 10:10 PM
    • 117 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    dhokes
    But I would make it a point to ask any solicitors you get a quote from if they have good knowledge of the HTB process.
    Originally posted by alex_163163
    What's the most effective way to find out if they truly have an understanding/experience of the HTB process? If you ask them, I'm sure they'll just say yes.
    • harrys dad
    • By harrys dad 25th Mar 17, 9:54 AM
    • 1,835 Posts
    • 2,063 Thanks
    harrys dad
    Thank you for feedback everyone, I found a solicitor for £1,550, since I am using HTB and have HTB ISA.

    Unfortunately the property development doesn't want me to use my own Solicitor or broker, they're verbally advising its their principle for all HTB application, I have asked for this in writing, they said "we don't have it in writing, I am verbally telling you".

    So we decided to look somewhere else for our perfect home, and remove this developer off our list.

    Good thing from this incident that I am better prepared.
    Originally posted by silversurf
    So the developer is prepared to lose a sale rather than let you use an independent solicitor. I wonder why?

    The developer is not prepared to put their "principles" in writing. I wonder why?

    Well done for walking away. Who is the developer? (so others can be warned).
    • martindow
    • By martindow 25th Mar 17, 10:11 AM
    • 7,264 Posts
    • 4,053 Thanks
    martindow
    God on the OP for walking away. I wouldn't be surprised if the developer came back offering some sort of bribe to lure you back.
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