HSBC Update | Conveyancing Guide
On 29th August HSBC are changing their lending rules so that all CQS accredited solicitors can act for both you, the buyer, and HSBC.
Every mortgage lender has an approved panel of conveyancing solicitors who they are happy to represent them. This approved panel usually consists of thousands of different law firms. If you choose a conveyancing solicitor who is on the lender's approved panel then the same solicitor can represent you and the mortgage lender making the conveyancing process faster, cheaper and easier. If you select a lawyer not on your lender’s panel then you can pay for the lender to have separate representation, your conveyancing solicitor or mortgage lender will be able to advise you of the additional legal fee involved.
Because most mortgage lenders have thousands of approved law firms on their panels it is unusual for separate representation to be needed.
In February 2012 HSBC changed their lending rules to protect themselves against mortgage fraud. HSBC mortgage customers had to instruct one of HSBC panel law firms (of which there were only 43) or pay for separate representation at a cost of £192 inc. VAT. To make things even more complicated HSBC customers had to be introduced to the law firm by HSBC’s panel manager Countrywide and customers could not seek out the law firms themselves.
On August 29th 2012 HSBC are changing their lending rules so any CQS accredited solicitor can act for the buyer and HSBC.
CQS is an acronym of Conveyancing Quality Scheme and is a recognised quality standard for residential conveyancing practices. So far, just over 1,600 firms across England and Wales have CQS.
For all new customer applications completed on or after 29th August the new lending rules will apply. Mortgage applications submitted before this date will still be subject to the original lending rules.
All of In-Deed’s law firms are CQS accredited, which means from 29th August 2012 you can use any In-Deed solicitor and not have to pay for separate representation.
If your HSBC mortgage application is submitted before the 29th August you will have to pay £192 (inc.VAT) for separate representation. All our HSBC clients use our most experienced conveyancing solicitor so we can minimise the complications which can arise. Your lawyer will endeavour to update you regularly and advise you fully of any potential delays. Please let us know if you are getting a HSBC mortgage as we will need to manually allocate you to the best lawyer.