FAQs : The Hodge Equity Release Solicitor Panel
from members of the public
My fiance and I are purchasing a 3 bedroom flat in Hackney with a mortgage from Hodge Equity Release. We have a solicitor but Hodge Equity Release says she’s not on their "panel". We have to appoint one of the Hodge Equity Release 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?
No, not really. The mortgage offered to you is subject to its terms and conditions, one of which will be that lawyers will on the Hodge Equity Release 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. A further alternative is for your solicitors to apply to be on the conveyancing panel for Hodge Equity Release
Please help. My lawyer is advising me that she is duty-bound to conduct a Local Authority search as the firm are on the Hodge Equity Release solicitor panel. The searches cost a lot of money. Can this be avoided?
You have limited options available to you. As you are taking a mortgage with Hodge Equity Release your lawyer has to comply with their conditions as set out in their version of the CML Conveyancing Handbook. Your lawyer would have previously signed the Terms and Conditions of Hodge Equity Release’s conveyancing panel appointment which obliges them to follow the CML Handbook requirements last updated Hodge Equity Release. even if you were a cash buyer you would be ill advised not to carry out a local authority search.
What tools are available to search for a local solicitor on the Hodge Equity Release conveyancing panel? I have a car and am prepared to travel up to 20 miles to meet the lawyer.
You can use the find a conveyancing panel tool 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 Hodge Equity Release solicitor panel.
I am buying a semi-detached house and getting a mortgage with Hodge Equity Release. Conveyancing solicitors are said to be ‘a necessary evil’ but can I do it myself?
Leaving aside the complexities and merits of DIY conveyancing you will have to appoint a solicitor on the Hodge Equity Release 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 Hodge Equity Release conveyancing panel in your location.
I was thinking of purchasing my friend’s property. Once we agree a price, what’s the best way to proceed? I plan to obtain a mortgage with Hodge Equity Release. Is it possible to avoid using solicitors to save on the costs? My father said that years ago it was possible to take the documents into the local Land Registry office and they did the rest
If you are getting a mortgage with Hodge Equity Release involved you will need to appoint a solicitor on the Hodge Equity Release conveyancing panel. We would not encourage you to both use the same solicitors' firm. There are clear conflict of interest issues and it's not going to make a huge difference to the speed of the overall process. So as not to hold things us you should pass on your solicitors details to Hodge Equity Release. Feel free to use our search tool to look for a licensed conveyancer or solicitor on the Hodge Equity Release conveyancing panel.
I have a mortgage with Hodge Equity Release. Conveyancing has been completed some time ago. Should I wish to rent out my property and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a buy-to-let mortgage or inform Hodge Equity Release?
Hodge Equity Release must be informed of your intention prior to renting your property as this is likely to be a breach of Hodge Equity Release’s mortgage conditions. In many cases banks or building societies will permit you to let 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 Hodge Equity Release directly. You need not do this via a Hodge Equity Release conveyancing panel firm.
I recently had an offer accepted on a house. My financial adviser recommended their conveyancers I paid an upfront payment of 200. Soon after the conveyancers contacted me to say that they were not on the Hodge Equity Release 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 Hodge Equity Release 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.