Habito Conveyancing Lender Panel Compliance Tool

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

This system optimises the way you can demonstrate to lender panels that you are, and can remain fully compliant with their instructions, with alerts on Habito’s changes. While utilising this technology is not a condition for acceptance on the Habito panel, demonstrating you can remain up to date with Habito’s Handbook requirements is an excellent support to your panel application and, just as importantly, protect your firm’s panel standing.

The system generates real-time alerts, automatically produces regulatory 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.

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Banks and building societies frequently 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, over time:

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.

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Q and A’s regarding the Habito Solicitor Panel from members of the public

We are purchasing a 2 bedroom apartment in Newcastle with a mortgage from Habito. We would like to retain our solicitor but Habito says she’s not on their "panel". It seems we have little choice but to instruct one of the Habito panel firms or keep our solicitor and pay for one of their panel ones to represent them. This seems very unfair; is there anything we can do?
Unfortunately,no. The mortgage offered to you is subject to its terms and conditions, one of which will be that lawyers will on the Habito conveyancing panel. Until recently, most lenders had large numbers of law firms on their panels: a borrower could choose one for themselves, as long as it was on the lender's panel. The lender would then simply instruct the borrower's lawyers to act for the lender, too. You can use your lender's panel lawyers or you could borrow from another lender which does not restrict your choice. Another option that might be available is for your lawyer to apply to be on the conveyancing panel for Habito
I am due to move into my new home next Friday. My conveyancing lawyer has asked me to provide him with a copy of the building insurance for the house as he says that he has to check this in has capacity as lawyer for Habito. What does the insurance need to cover?
Any lawyer on the Habito conveyancing panel would need to check that the following risks are covered fire; lightning; aircraft; explosion; earthquake; storm; flood; escape of water or oil; riot; malicious damage; theft or attempted theft; falling trees and branches and aerials; subsidence; heave;landslip;collision;accidental damage to underground services;professional fees, demolition and site clearance costs; and public liability to anyone else. There are some other issues such as the level of excess that are set out in Habito’s Part 2 requirements of the CML Handbook (last updated on Habito). Being on the Habito conveyancing panel your lawyer is expect to follow these requirements.
I am searching for online conveyancing estimates. Can I be assured that all the practices that are identified on your directory are on the Habito conveyancing panel?
The law firms listed on our site have advised us that they are on the Habito panel and agreed to advise us to take down their listing in the event of removal off of the Habito panel. To date we have not been informed by either a lender or a member of the public that the data about a specific firm being on the Habito conveyancing panel is incorrect.
My conveyancers in Liverpool have advised me that no longer have my conveyancing file. At the time of my purchase I took out a mortgage with Habito. Is it case that being on the Habito conveyancing panel they need to have retained the file for a number of years?
Different lenders have different requirements but many of the Terms and Conditions of Conveyancing Panel Appointment require the file to be held for a period of 6 years. That being said we have not seen a copy of the Habito Conveyancing Panel Terms. It might be worth you contacting Habito directly.
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.
I recently had an offer accepted on an apartment. My mortgage broker recommended their conveyancers I paid an upfront payment of 200. Soon after the conveyancers contacted me to say that they were not on the Habito conveyancing panel. Am I right in thinking that I should be due a refund?
You should be able to recover this from the law firm if they were not on the Habito panel. They should have asked at the outset which lender you were obtaining a mortgage with. An important lesson to readers of this site is to check that the lawyers are on the appropriate lender panel.
My ex -wife’s name is on the Habito mortgage of my property but not on the land registry. The apartment was transferred to me on our divorce many years ago by way of a sealed court order. Does my ex still have a say on the sale even though the land registry showing the property in my name alone? Will I be required to take her name of the Habito mortgage in order to sell?
As regards the Habito mortgage, it is unusual that your ex-wife’s name remains on the mortgage but not on the title. It is conceivable that this is an oversight on the part of your conveyancers to ensure that her name was removed or even an administrative error on the part of Habito in failing to update their data. In any event, it should cause difficulty providing her name no longer appears on the Land Registry title and you have a court order ordering that the property is transferred to you.