Habito Conveyancing Lender Panel Compliance Tool

COMPLETIONmonitor is an online pre- and post-completion checklist for property lawyers. Supported by the CML and professional indemnity insures. It is a unique risk management tool.

This system is the only way you can prove to lender panels that you are, and can remain fully compliant with their instructions, with alerts on Habito’s changes. While utilising COMPLETIONmonitor is not a prerequisite for Habito , demonstrating you can remain up to date with Habito’s Handbook requirements is an excellent support to your panel application and, just as importantly, safeguard your firm’s panel status.

COMPLETIONmonitor generates real-time alerts, automatically produces compliance and CQS reports, and will increase your firm's efficiency. It is also user friendly, cost-effective and, for many firms, results in a PII saving.

Find a Law Firm approved by Habito

Lenders often change their requirements. The UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook requirements from Habito 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 2008, Habito has made 1 revisions or additions to sections of their version of the CML Handbook.
That equates to a section change every 2730.0 days. In total, 0% of the sections of P2 of the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook for Habito have been changed since 15/12/2008.

To find out more about lender panel compliance,

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Recent Changes Include

# Date Assoc. Changes Related To
5.14.1 07/10/2019 CML

Last update 16/01/2020

Habito Conveyancing Panel Recently Asked Questions from members of the public

I am in the process of selling my house and the EA has just telephoned to warn that the purchasers are appointing a new conveyancer. I am told that this is due to the fact that Habito will only engage with solicitors on their conveyancing panel. Why would a big named lender only engage with certain law firms?
Lenders have always had an approved set 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 more than 25 years.

Banks point to the increase 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.

My fiance and I changing mortgage lender for our flat with Habito. We have a son approaching twenty who lives with us. The solicitor on the Habito conveyancing panel requested us to identify any adults other than ourselves who lives in the flat. Our lawyer has now e-mailed a document for our son to sign, waiving any legal rights in the event that the flat is forfeited by the lender. I have two concerns (1) Is this document specific to the Habito conveyancing panel as he did not need to sign this form when we bought 5 years ago (2) Does our son by signing this giving up his rights to inherit the property?
First, rest assured that your Habito conveyancing panel solicitor is doing the right thing as it is established procedure for any occupier who is aged 17 or over to sign the necessary Consent Form, which is purely to state that any rights he has in the property are postponed and secondary to Habito .This is solely used to protect the Habito if the property were re-possessed so that in such circumstances, your son would be legally obliged to leave.

It does not impact your son’s right to inherit the apartment. Please note that if your son were to inherit and the mortgage in favour of Habito had not been discharged, he would be liable to take over the loan or pay it off, but other than that, there is nothing stopping him from keeping the property in accordance with your will or the rules of intestacy.

Having used your search tool I can't find the lawyer I was hoping to instruct as being on the Habito conveyancing panel. My lawyer has said that they are on the Habito approved panel. How can I be sure given that they are not listed on your directory?
Not all firms are yet listed on our lender panel search tool which is still relatively new. Law firms are listing on a daily basis and it is probably the case that your lawyer is on the Habito conveyancing lawyer and you should probably take them at their word. Please do feel free to suggest that they completing their listing on our site as it would only cost them £1 a month to list themselves as being on the Habito solicitor panel.
The firm that just started acting on my house acquisition in Brighton has suddenly closed. They were on acting for me because I needed a firm on the Habito conveyancing panel and my previous lawyer was not. I gave them a cheque for £150 in advance. What are my options?
Assuming that you have an Estate Agent in the equation then let them know immediately so that they can let the sellers know that there may be a slight delay due to the problems encountered. Most sellers would be sympathetic and urge their lawyer to send a new set of papers to your new solicitors. You should appoint new lawyers that are on the Habito conveyancing panel and notify the lender. If you have paid over any money it will hopefully be held by the SRA as money in an intervened firm's bank accounts is transferred to the SRA. Then, the SRA or the intervention agent looks at the intervened firm's accounts to work out who the money belongs to. To claim your money you will need to contact the SRA. If the SRA cannot return money you are owed from the firm's bank accounts, or if they can only return part of the money, you can apply to the Compensation Fund for a grant. Your new solicitors should be in a position to help
Do the majority of lenders operate their own panel of solicitors?
Many lenders do operate a restricted conveyancing panel but a lot of lenders allow any solicitors to join their panel so long as they meet their criteria. Each lender sets their own criteria. For example the Habito conveyancing panel requirements are different to Habito’s conveyancing panel criteria.
For 5 years I had a mortgage with Habito. My uncle has just retired and wants to pay off the mortgage left on the property. After Habito is paid, I want to transfer the property to my mother's name; How long will it roughly take? Do we need two separate solicitors on the Habito conveyancing panel? I do not intend to live at the property once the Habito mortgage is discharged.
You will need a solicitor but they need not be on the Habito conveyancing panel. You will need a solicitor to draw up the transfer and to deal with the Land Registry formalities. The only thing you need to consider is that by selling at an undervalue so ask your lawyer about the implications. There could be an inheritance tax issue if you die within 7 years of this. As the property is your main residence you need not pay CGT but you should speak with your accountants in any event.
My husband and I are buying a penthouse in Hendon. Conveyancing solicitors in Hendon are about to begiven the go-ahead. My agentsuggested that we make sure that the property lawyer in Hendon is on the Habito solicitors panel. Surely I don't need to do this, do I?
Far from all Hendon conveyancing solicitors are on the Habito conveyancing panel. Use the above search tool to find a Hendon conveyancing practitioner on the on the Habito list of approved conveyancing firms.