Gary Rycroft column

Gary Rycroft.
Gary Rycroft.

The recent cold weather has been a timely reminder that despite fresh strawberries and raspberries being available in the supermarkets all year round we do still have seasons and as the days get longer we can look forward to spring.

ccording to Alfred, Lord Tennyson in his 1835 poem Locksley Hall, “In the spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love” and whilst that may well be the case, for many others the focus in spring is a love of moving house.

The property market is always quieter around Christmas and then takes a while to get going again and spring is often the time sellers and buyers come to the market.

Solicitors are an essential part of the process of moving house. In conveyancing matters we assume the risk of advising the client on the legal aspects of the deal struck and handle the crucial financial aspects of the transaction including the transfer of funds from one party to another and obtaining security on behalf of any mortgage lender.

In my office in Lancaster, just like many other High Street Firms, we also do a lot of hand holding with clients who are in the midst of a big life event.

The conveyancing process takes an average of just over 11 weeks and a survey of house movers published last month by The Law Society found that the waiting aspect of buying a home is the most stressful part of the experience.

When it comes to timing the two key factors are usually the availability of money and the number of parties involved in a chain. Respondents to the survey asked if they could change one aspect of their house move, said they would prefer to have a faster process, rather than lower legal fees and stamp duty.

So it’s good news the Government has said it is going to do the least it possibly can to comply with a new EU Mortgage Credit Directive, which many think would slow down the process of obtaining a mortgage by giving consumers more time to consider loan offers. Brussels sees the Directive as a consumer protection, but I’m sure house movers will just see it as an impediment to the desire to get on and get the keys to their home.