Conveyancing Solicitors

Your personal legal advisor will help you through your conveyancing, quickly and painlessly

Helping you to move home

Buying a new home is one of the most important investments of our lives, so it is important that you have the support and guidance of a professional who knows what they are doing. Your conveyancing solicitor will help you through your conveyancing, as quickly and painlessly as possible.

Key Contact

Catherine Thompson

Residential Conveyancer

Choosing the right conveyancing solicitor​

When buying or selling a property, you should carefully consider whether you need a local or online conveyancing solictor.

At Goughs Solicitors we are the largest solicitors in Wiltshire, with seven offices throughout the county in Calne, Chippenham, Corsham, Devizes, Melksham, Trowbridge and Greenways.

1,500 conveyancing transactions successfully completed in the past year

A personal, dedicated property lawyer

Guaranteed same-day call back

Conveyancing for residential properties

Conveyancing is the legal process of transferring the legal title of a property or piece of land from one owner to another. The process will involve a legal advisor or conveyancing solicitor, which ensures that the property being purchased has no unknown restrictions and that it will sell without any issues in the future. 

In residential properties, the process begins when an offer is accepted and ends when the buyer receives the keys. This usually takes around 8-12 weeks, but can vary depending on the property and individuals involved. It can be a very complex process, and requires the assistance of a specialist residential conveyancing solicitor.

The role of a conveyancing solicitor

Conveyancing solicitors look after all the legal work involved in transferring a property to a new owner. It is their responsibility to advise you on the legal details of contracts, deeds and timeframes, and provide bespoke legal advice. Their role includes a wide range of different legal tasks, such as:

Carrying out council searches

Property searches are carried out by the conveyancing solicitor and the local authorities to find out further information about the property, such as council planning enforcement or neighbours’ planning permissions. They also ensure the buyer is aware of any flood risks and mains water and drainage systems.

Handling the contracts​

The conveyancing solicitor is responsible for reading and analysing the contracts between the two parties to ensure that everything is in order. They check for any discrepancies in pre-agreed terms and look for things such as the arrangement of deposit transfer, proposed dates for contract exchange and completion, and whether all of the agreed fittings and fixtures have been outlined. They are also responsible for dealing with the land registry.

Transferring the funds​

Conveyancing solicitors are in charge of transferring the funds to complete on your property purchase or to receive the funds if you are selling your property, and it is also down to them to prepare you for any possible problems that could arise on the day of completion.

Conducting Property Searches

Conveyancing property searches are enquiries made on behalf of the buyer by their legal representative to various authorities that hold information about the property being purchased, the land it sits on and any other factors that may affect its future value.

They are not always compulsory. If you buy the property with 100% cash, you are free to choose which, if any, search(es) you undertake. However, if you are purchasing a property with a mortgage, the lender will inform the conveyancer what searches need to be completed before they will release the mortgage funds.

Property search

Searches required when buying a house

Searches are usually requested once your conveyancer has received the contract pack from the conveyancer acting for the seller. 

Property searches usually take anywhere between 10 days to a few months. However, Local Authority searches can take a long time due to staff turnover and industry cutbacks. As well as this, different authorities use different methods to generate and communicate searches, meaning that the turnaround time of these searches can vary significantly across the country.

Local Authority Searches

Local authority searches highlight any planning, building control, highway or pollution issues that a property may have.

Water and Drainage Searches

The Water and Drainage search questions who owns and maintains the sewers, drains and pipes; whether or not the property is connected to a public water supply and sewer; if the water supply is metered or rateable; the location of public sewer and drainage pipes; and whether the owner of the property will need permission from the water company to build an extension.

Environmental Searches

An environmental search covers any flooding, landslide, subsidence or contaminated land matters.

Don’t risk losing your new home!

Our local conveyancing experts will be there at every step

Popular questions about the conveyancing process

The average time that it takes to complete a house sale is between 4 and 6 months. It can take around 10-12 weeks from a new home listing for an offer to be accepted. The conveyancing process usually takes around 12 weeks. The average time scale from the exchange of contracts to completion on the property is up to  2  weeks, but in some cases it can happen on the same day.

Conveyancing fees are the legal costs associated with buying or selling a property. They cover the work that the conveyancing solicitor does to complete the sale or purchase process, including drafting contracts, arranging relevant property searches and managing the transfer of funds. You can expect to pay an average of around £800 – £2,000 for conveyancing fees, depending on a number of important factors.

Leasehold properties are more complicated , and therefore take up more time. That is why  conveyancing fees associated with a leasehold sale or purchase will be more expensive than those for a freehold property.

The more complicated the sale or purchase is, the more expensive the conveyancing fees will be. For example, if you are a chain-free cash buyer,  this should make it a relatively smooth process, but  there are many factors that can contribute towards the process being more complex and time consuming such as complicated legal titles or long chains, and you would likely be charged more in conveyancing fees.

If you are buying and selling properties simultaneously, you will be undertaking two separate conveyancing transactions. Therefore, this will cost more in conveyancing costs than just one single transaction.

Some conveyancing solicitors offer a fixed fee conveyancing service. This means that your legal professional will give you a price at the start of the process, and that is what you will pay for the service, rather than charging by the hour. Disbursements will be charged in addition to this fixed fee, but the conveyancer will be able to give an estimate of these additional costs before they begin.

We don’t have a fixes fee but we quote on a bespoke basis, so additional costs don’t sneak in further down the line.

For a free quote go to our online conveyancing quote form here

There is a common misconception that licensed conveyancers are not as qualified to deal with property than solicitors, however that is not the case.

Licensed conveyancers study conveyancing and land law specifically, and only practise in this area, so they will have an in-depth knowledge and necessary experience to help you with the conveyancing of a property. Therefore, solicitors and conveyancers should be equally skilled at conveyancing.

Many mortgage lenders will require you to use a professional conveyancing solicitor as part of their mortgage offer. 

If you are a cash buyer, they are not a legal requirement, however, it could be risky to do the conveyancing without any legal help which could lead to delays and issues further down the line.  

Conveyancing is a particularly high risk area of law as there can be issues surrounding the property sale such as; unregistered with the Land Registry, if the sellers are divorcing as well as many other areas.

Searches are necessary to discover any issues before transferring ownership of the property. They are also required by lenders, as they want to be certain that nothing could affect the property’s value before they release the mortgage funds.

The average time scale for searches is anywhere between 10 days to a few months. Typically searches take around two – three weeks, however different factors can impact the time scale, such as the location of the house and how long external bodies can take to produce the required information.

The best way to ensure the searches are carried out swiftly is to ensure you have returned all of your instruction paperwork and money on account so that your conveyancer is able to order the searches as soon as the contract paperwork arrives.

To learn more about searches read our article on; Conveyancing searches: everything you need to know

Our clients rate us as excellent

Corsham

Well-managed transaction handled promptly and professionally. We have used Goughs before, will use again and would not hesitate to recommend

Sue Jenkins

Nadine has been excellent throughout, keeping us regularly informed of all progress and we liked her very practical approach to things. The support staff at Goughs have also been excellent throughout, hence, instructing Goughs on 4 property matters. Nothing too much trouble and all requests were dealt with very swiftly

Devizes

I have used Goughs solicitors for conveyancing on more than one occasion. Extremely efficient and professional and wouldn’t hesitate in recommending them

W D, Calne

Professional, helpful & knowledgeable service. Giving very clear advice in a way I could understand. Thank you.

S, M, Chippenham

The service was professional, efficient and very friendly. I will be using Goughs again.

Sarah Fuller

Brilliant service, I couldn’t fault Goughs and have subsequently gone on to use their services for another purpose.

Meet the Residential Property Team

Ailie Peacock

Senior Associate Licensed Conveyancer

Alison Parfitt

Trainee Residential Conveyancer

Amy Moran

Associate Chartered Legal Executive

Catherine Thompson

Residential Conveyancer

Donna Linden

Senior Associate Residential Property Practitioner

Elmira Moore

Senior Associate

Faye Smith

Solicitor

Gemma Rodriguez-Molloy

Licensed Conveyancer

Elmira Moore

Senior Associate

Lesley Warren

Partner and Head of Residential Property

Rachael Watkins

Trainee Residential Conveyancer

Alison Parfitt

Trainee Residential Conveyancer

Gemma Rodriguez-Molloy

Licensed Conveyancer

Amy Moran

Associate Chartered Legal Executive

Catherine Thompson

Residential Conveyancer

Sophie Laird

Residential Conveyancer

Faye Smith

Solicitor

Donna Linden

Senior Associate Residential Property Practitioner

Nadine Stevenson

Partner

Ailie Peacock

Senior Associate Licensed Conveyancer

Isabel Figueiredo

Partner & Notary Public

Lindsey Nolan

Senior Associate Solicitor

Why Choose Goughs?

Local since 1882, with an excellent reputation

First-class, effective service

Largest solicitors in Wiltshire

Seven offices throughout the county

Nationally accredited law firm

Recognised by Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners

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Our Offices

The Strand, Calne
Wiltshire, SN11 0JU
01249 812086

Chippenham
Mill House, 1 New Road
Chippenham, Wiltshire
SN15 1EJ
01249 444499

Corsham
23 Pickwick Road, Corsham,
Wiltshire, SN13 9BH
01249 712193

Devizes
Ramsbury House
30 Market Place, Devizes
Wiltshire, SN10 1JG
01380 726913

Melksham
5 Bath Road, Melksham
Wiltshire, SN12 6LN
01225 703036

Trowbridge
2 Fore Street, Trowbridge
Wiltshire, BA14 8HX
01225 762683

Greenways
Unit 5
Greenways Business Park
Bellinger Close
Chippenham
SN15 1BN
01249 475880

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