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    • ric1982
    • By ric1982 13th Apr 18, 8:40 AM
    • 190Posts
    • 31Thanks
    Change of solicitor at early stage
    • #1
    • 13th Apr 18, 8:40 AM
    Change of solicitor at early stage 13th Apr 18 at 8:40 AM

    I am in process of buying a house. Its still at early stage (only a week since the offer is accepted.

    The solicitor I have appointed is a small firm so I understand they will be less formal/methodical when it comes to client interaction.

    Here's my concerns with the current solicitor:

    - When asked for a quote the guy sent me just a number instead of breakdown and if there are hidden charges. It took him 2 days to send this number.
    - In response I have asked for detailed quote and if there are hidden charges and no reply since last two days.
    - The person who is going to handle the case is only available between 10 and 2 during weekdays.
    - I have called them and left message but they havent got any response from them.

    I am wondering If they are not being able to reply for my sales (quotation) queries then how efficient they are going to be when dealing with my queries (also with in limited hours during the day)

    Second Solicitor:
    Recently friend of mine recommended another solicitor. They seems good in replying to queries (prob. because its still early days and they are seeking my business). They are bigger firm they have larger staff and have bigger office hours (not just between 10 and 2). Their fees are also reasonable and fixed. The person who have recommended have had good experience with them.

    Does this sound like valid concerns or am I being unreasonable with the first solicitor?

    If I change now and the vendor's sol. have sent the draft contract document to my old solicitor how those can be sent/redirect to my new one? will it create doubts at vendors end. All want to do is to eliminate issues at the beginning rather then wait until its too late!

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    • JoJo1978
    • By JoJo1978 13th Apr 18, 9:39 AM
    • 369 Posts
    • 443 Thanks
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 18, 9:39 AM
    • #2
    • 13th Apr 18, 9:39 AM
    You can change easily enough but things to consider are:
    1. Will you have to pay sol 1 partial fee, check your contract
    2. Sol 2 may insist on re-doing any searches already ordered, at extra cost to you
    3. It will probably cause a slight delay, is that ok with your plans?
    4. Will it spook the other parties in your chain, easy to resolve with clear communication

    Both times we've bought and sold another party in our chain has switched sols for various reasons and it was fine. Good luck!
    Hamster in the wheel (London) 1999-2017
    Mortgage free since 2015; Pension pot sorted 2017
    Part-time gigger and charity volunteer 2018
    • Tiglet2
    • By Tiglet2 13th Apr 18, 3:02 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 261 Thanks
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 18, 3:02 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Apr 18, 3:02 PM
    If you're only 1 week since the offer was accepted, it is highly like that the draft contract hasn't gone out yet, so change solicitor now. Otherwise, if the draft contract has gone out, the original solicitor has to send back all the paperwork to the seller's solicitor and they will then send it back out to the new solicitor. In theory it shouldn't take long, but in reality this can set you back by a couple of weeks.
    • AlexMac
    • By AlexMac 13th Apr 18, 5:18 PM
    • 2,216 Posts
    • 1,945 Thanks
    • #4
    • 13th Apr 18, 5:18 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Apr 18, 5:18 PM
    Better to switch early than later (as our kids' vendor had to do on their last purchase, after the other side's solicitor screwed up and wasted months). At least you now have criteria to choose a sharper lawyer; (answers the phone, uses email, provides a breakdown immediately of any oral quote...) Although these have been rehearsed so many times in past posts on this forum it's a pity you didn't use the search bar first.

    But returning to the main issue; have you actually formally "instructed" Solicitor #1 by signing their Terms if Business? And paid them a deposit?

    No solicitor I've used ever starts to work before I bung 'em a couple of hundred quid.

    And if do dump them, you could quite cynically lodge a formal complaint (initiALLY using their in-house process; google it), or at least ask for their complaints procedure in case they try to claim breach of contract?
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