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  • FIRST POST
    • archess200
    • By archess200 16th May 17, 8:05 PM
    • 30Posts
    • 18Thanks
    archess200
    Completing a house sale
    • #1
    • 16th May 17, 8:05 PM
    Completing a house sale 16th May 17 at 8:05 PM
    Bought the house in Dec. 1990 with Mortgage from Woolwich Building Society: redemed the mortgage in 1991. Barclays then took over the Woolwich business, 1997 or so. Am now selling the house free from mortgage, but my appalling solicitors have only now stated that Barclays have a Charge on the Title. There is one week to go to completion, they have taken 6 months to get this far and only now have they given me this information. The Property Information Form I filled in last July 2016 stated that I had no mortgage, so they should have noticed the Charge outstanding when they first applied for the Title Documents. I have left all the documentation in my new property the other end of the country, and don't even recollect a Redemption Statement being among them. I would ask [a] Whether it is common for a Mortgage holder to not have cleared the Charge on the Title [b] Is my Solicitor negligent for not asking for this before now [c] What can be done? Is it down to me to prove I have paid off the mortgage or should the Solicitor be chasing Barclays for clarification? I can foresee a huge delay in Barclays responding to this, if they ever do: my experience of Barclays is sheer incompetence, especially as the mortgage was redeemed before they took over the Woolwich. I have the move all booked for next week, the buyer is flying in from America with all her luggage and dogs.
    Advice please, and lots of it.
    If anybody wants the name of my solicitor, I would be only too glad to pass on my experiences.
Page 1
    • G_M
    • By G_M 16th May 17, 8:22 PM
    • 39,242 Posts
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    G_M
    • #2
    • 16th May 17, 8:22 PM
    • #2
    • 16th May 17, 8:22 PM
    You don't say if you've Exchanged. Have you? If yes you have a problem.

    1) get out all your paperwork from Woolwich/Barclays showing the mortgage redemption. Copy it.
    2) instruct your solicitor to get the Charge removed asap (and give him copies from 1 above)
    3) contact Barclays yourself and see if/how you can speed up the pocess (using copies from 1 above

    This will take some time, so contact the buyers and/or EA to explain there will be a delay.

    Who is responsible? Well everyone

    * Woolwich should have removed the Charge when you redeemed the mortgage
    * you should have checked the Charge was removed
    * when Barclays took over, I imagine they amended the Charge from Woolwich into their name. I also imagine you would have received confirmation of this at the time
    * you should have noticed that Barclays was placing a Charge on the property in place of the Woolwich Charge
    * your (current) solicitor should have noticed there was a Charge and made provision for its redemption/removal at Completion
    * your buyers should have noticed the Charge and requested its removal

    I can't think who else might be involved/at fault!
    Last edited by G_M; 16-05-2017 at 8:27 PM.
    • archess200
    • By archess200 17th May 17, 8:07 AM
    • 30 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    archess200
    • #3
    • 17th May 17, 8:07 AM
    • #3
    • 17th May 17, 8:07 AM
    Many thanks for your complete advice.
    1. We have exchanged.
    2. I do not have the redemption paperwork: that is the other side of the country, and I am packing up the old house to move on Tuesday. I have brought a huge bundle, wrapped in Woolwich bag, which Woolwich stored wilst they held the mortgage. This is an 18th c. property and there is a big bundle of deeds, not going all that way back, but several conveyances. In 1990 mortgage holders still held the deeds themselves, and they only returned them when the mortgage was paid off. This is the only evidence I have with me that they have acknowledged the mortgage has been paid off.
    3. I have never been contacted by Barclays that they had taken over the Woolwich: I am a Barclays Bank account holder, from that time, so they had my contact information from other sources. Not a jot.
    4. I believe Barclays took over Woolwich AFTER my mortgage was redeemed.
    5. My current solicitor, an online cheapy but been trading for a long time, local to my new home and I have visited their offices to give documentation and chase them up, have mislaid my ID docs. twice, sent letters to the sale address despite my giving them the new address as the contact address and misunderstood Building Regulations terminology; they took 3 months to follow up a letter they sent to the wrong address and failed to contact the Local Authority over a Building Regs matter. So, incompetent in big letters. They should have noticed that there was a Charge when they originally investigated title, and that it contradicted my statement on my Information Form, which stated I did not have a mortgage.
    I will chase Barclays today: I have confronted my solicitor, but it seems they employ part-timers to do this work, several people cover the job and nobody seems to be in charge.
    The big point supporting my case that I do not have a mortgage, is that I hold all the documents which Barclays would be holding if I still owed them money!
    Thanks for your advice and support.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 17th May 17, 2:56 PM
    • 39,242 Posts
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    G_M
    • #4
    • 17th May 17, 2:56 PM
    • #4
    • 17th May 17, 2:56 PM
    I cannot really add anything to my original advice. This will inevitably yake time to resolve as Barclays will not remove the Charge till they are satisfied, via either your own documents and/or their own internal enquiries, that the mortgage is redeemend.

    Avoid online solicitors......

    And (for the future, and for others reading) when paying off a major debt always make sure it's done properly!
    • archess200
    • By archess200 18th May 17, 7:07 AM
    • 30 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    archess200
    • #5
    • 18th May 17, 7:07 AM
    You're quite right in last comment: good news
    • #5
    • 18th May 17, 7:07 AM
    I used to work in conveyancing doing the menial work for the solicitors, and I would never have thought to have checked this as a client. However, went into Barclays, helpful manageress put me in touch with Mortgage department - call centre in India. Having got the message across, they inserted the postcode and name and got no record of any mortgage. She then sent a request to the contract department [? couldn't quite understand what was said]. Could take 15 working days, but she would request expedition. So at least that got going. But having berated my solicitor that they should have picked this up 6 months ago, and avoided being fobbed off, she then got onto Barclays who agreed to lift the Charge within 48 hours. So I await to see if this happens.
    I would suggest that we shouldn't trust any solicitor. I have previously sold a leasehold flat, doing the conveyancing myself, had no problems other than the buyer's solicitor kept blaming the vendor's solicitor [ie me], for holding up the process: they all seem to hide behind blaming each other for delays. How do you find a good one?
    Many thanks again.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 18th May 17, 1:49 PM
    • 39,242 Posts
    • 44,583 Thanks
    G_M
    • #6
    • 18th May 17, 1:49 PM
    • #6
    • 18th May 17, 1:49 PM
    I used to work in conveyancing doing the menial work for the solicitors, and I would never have thought to have checked this as a client.


    I would suggest that we shouldn't trust any solicitor....... How do you find a good one?
    Originally posted by archess200
    I'm a great believer in personal responsibility. As an example (sorry - off-topic!) I am not that sympathetic to these 'misselling' claims (PPI etc) or those borrowers of 110% mortgages who ended up in negative equity. They made decisions, signed contracts, so in my view they should take responsibility.

    Not popular I know!

    So I'd take a similar view to mortgage redemption. Yes, the lender/solicitor should have removed the Charge, but where it affects your home, and invlves 00s,000s of your money, surely you (read 'one') should double-check it's properly done?

    My advice for finding a good solicitor is

    * use a small firm where you can have a personal relationship, not a massive outfit with tens of Partners and hundreds of solicitors
    * meet the solicitor. A local firm you can go in to
    * judge your instinct when you meet him/her.

    And with any major decision/purchase etc, do some research yourself. Yes, use professionals, but don't just rely on them 100%. Whether it's conveyancing, or mortgages, or a property deelopment where you employ an architect/surveyor - you still need to understand the basic process and keep an eye on things.
    Last edited by G_M; 18-05-2017 at 1:51 PM.
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