Astra Mortgages Conveyancing Lender Panel Compliance Tool

Lexsure’s COMPLETIONmonitor is web-based pre- and post-completion checklist for residential conveyancing lawyers. Supported by the Council of Mortgage Lenders and professional indemnity insures. COMPLETIONmonitor is a unique risk mitigation tool.

This system optimises the way you can prove to lender panels that you are, and can stay fully compliant with their requirements, with automatic updates on Astra Mortgages’s changes. Even though using this technology is not a prerequisite for Astra Mortgages , demonstrating you can stay up to date with Astra Mortgages’s Handbook requirements is an excellent support to your panel application and, more importantly, protect your panel status.

COMPLETIONmonitor generates real-time alerts, automatically produces SRA and CQS reports, and will enhance your firm's efficiency. In addition it is user friendly, cost-effective and, for many firms, results in a PII saving.

Find a Law Firm approved by Astra Mortgages

Mortgage companies often vary their requirements. The BSA instructions from Astra Mortgages are not guidelines, they are instructions from a client. As with many clients, instructions can change - and they do change, frequently:

A Timeline of Policy Changes


Since 2010, Astra Mortgages has made 59 revisions or additions to sections of their version of the BSA Requirements.
That equates to a section change every 46.3 days. In total, 49% of the sections of the BSA Requirements for Astra Mortgages have been changed since 26/1/2010.

To find out more about lender panel compliance,

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ASTRA mortgages Solicitor Panel Recently Asked Questions from members of the public

I am in the process of selling my flat and the EA has just e-mailed to warn that the purchasers are swapping solicitor. I am told that this is due to the fact that ASTRA mortgages will only deal with solicitors on their conveyancing panel. On what basis would a big named mortgage company only engage with specific solicitors?
UK lenders have always had panels of law firms they are willing to work with, but in the past few years big names such as Nationwide , have reviewed and reduced their conveyancing panel– in some cases removing conveyancing firms who have worked with them for decades.

Banks blame a rise in fraud as the reason for the cull – criteria have been tightened and a smaller panel should be easier to keep an eye on. No lender will say how many solicitors have been dropped, claiming the information is commercially sensitive, but the Law Society says it is being contacted daily by practices that have been removed from panels, or have other concerns about them. Some do not even realise they have been dropped until contacted by a borrower who has instructed them as might be the situation in your buyer’s case. Your purchasers are unlikely to have any sway in the decision.

I am buying a brand new apartment and my solicitor is advising me that she is duty bound to disclose incentives from the developer as her practice is on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel. I am nearing the developer’s deadline to exchange contracts and I would rather not prolong deal. Is my lawyer right?
You should not exchange unless you have advised to do so by your lawyer. A precondition to being on the ASTRA mortgages approved panel is to comply with the CML Handbook requirements (last updated for this lender on ASTRA mortgages). The CML Conveyancing Handbook requires that your lawyer have the appropriate Disclosure of Incentive form completed by the developer and accepted by your lender.
What tools are available to search for a local solicitor on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel? I have a car and am prepared to travel up to 20 kilometers to meet the conveyancer.
You can use the find a conveyancing panel search on this page. Please choose the lender and your location and you will see a number of lawyer located nearest you. Alternatively you can type in the name of your proposed law firm and see if they are listed as being on the ASTRA mortgages solicitor panel.
I am buying a right to buy flat and getting a mortgage with ASTRA mortgages. How practical is it for me to do the conveyancing?
Leaving aside the complexities and merits of DIY conveyancing you will have to appoint a solicitor on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel to look after their interests. Most people therefore find it easier to let the solicitor act for them and the lender. Furthermore there is minimal cost savings to made in you doing to conveyancing for yourself and another lawyer conducting the conveyancing for the lender. Please feel free to use the search tool to find a lawyer on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel in your location.
We expect to receive a DIP from ASTRA mortgages this week so we can work out what to offer on a property we like as otherwise we only have online calculators to go by (which aren't taking into account credit checks etc).Do the ASTRA mortgages recommend a solicitor on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel, or is it better to go independently
You will need to appoint solicitors independently although you'll need to choose one on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel. The solicitor represents both you and the ASTRA mortgages through the process.
I am currently in the process of buying my council flat. I have a mortgage offer with ASTRA mortgages. Conveyancing is new to me. Can I proceed without a solicitor easily? I think we can but we keep being told I should have one. Any advice?
It is not advisable proceed with a house purchase without a solicitor. The council's solicitor are not acting for you. You need a solicitor for a number reasons. One of which is to verify what plans the Council have for repairs and refurbishment for the next five years. Many leaseholders have been stung for contributions of thousands of pounds. In any event if you are getting a mortgage with ASTRA mortgages you will need to appoint a solicitor on the ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel.
I have a mortgage with ASTRA mortgages. Conveyancing was finalised 12 months ago. In the event that I decide to rent out my property and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a BTL mortgage or inform ASTRA mortgages?
You must advise ASTRA mortgages prior to renting your property as this is likely to be a breach of ASTRA mortgages’s mortgage conditions. It may be that ASTRA mortgages will allow you to rent out your former home without needing to switch to a buy-to-let mortgage but some lenders will add a surcharge to your mortgage rate to reflect the higher risk. You should contact ASTRA mortgages directly. It should not be necessary to do this via a ASTRA mortgages conveyancing panel firm.