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House and home

Impatiently waiting

(73 Posts)
Flaxseed Fri 23-Jul-21 14:11:56

I have a couple of threads on here ‘getting cold feet’ and ‘sad about moving’ being the latest ones.

Long story cut short
30 plus years in current house. Decided to sell when myself and DP found a house to buy together. I pulled out of that sale and am now buying alone. DD2, her DP and my DGS are currently living with me after selling their flat. The house they found has fallen through and they are devastated. So it looks like they will be coming with me to my new house. They could rent but we are in the SE and it’s terribly expensive (far more than their mortgage payments) and they don’t really want to enter into a contract and potentially lose out on a future buy because of this. I am totally supportive of this (and was actually the one who pointed it out when they mentioned renting)

Anyway, I just need to offload my latest frustrations to you wonderful lot.

I am currently sitting here seething. Are all conveyancing solicitors slow?
I never hear from mine unless I ask for updates. She then says she is chasing this/that ‘today’
I really don’t think she does anything unless she hears from me hmm!!
Then she sends me a load of enquiries from the purchasers solicitors. Yesterday, she sent a list of queries, of which two I have already answered in previous queries weeks back.
I’m afraid my replies yesterday where very curt angry.

I feel I am in limbo and at a loss as to what I can be getting on with.
Having DD2 etc here means I can’t pack as much as I would like as all of their stuff is in storage.
Not having a date means I am finding it difficult to pack things I might need i.e, it’s DGS birthday next month, so my ‘entertaining’ crockery, party stuff etc can’t even be packed in case I am still here. (We always have family birthdays here, as I have the biggest garden/entertaining space)
I want to give the cooker/dishwasher/washing machine a really good clean but there’s no point doing those either yet.
I have taken down pictures/photos and filled the holes in, I’ve dumped everything that I can, and sorted and taken stuff to charity.
There still seems so much to do that I actually can’t do yet.
I want to buy some new bits (I’ve had a second visit to measure up) but am scared the sale will fall through and it’ll be too late for refunds.
I can’t book time off of work, or a removal firm or van hire until I know a date.
The whole process is stressful and frustrating.
I haven’t moved in so long that I don’t remember this before.
Any tips please?!confused

MerylStreep Fri 23-Jul-21 14:36:04

I’ve moved 5 times in the past 30 years and bought properties for rental.
We moved into this property 7 years ago and I can categorically say that it has never been as bad as it has been for the past few years.
I was asked 14 times, yes, 14 if we had a knotweed problem. We were in a second floor flat !!!!!!
At the same time we were negotiating a new lease as ours only had 83 years left on it
Things got so bad with our solicitor ( and our buyer’s) that I contacted the buyer direct to circumvent what both solicitors were saying.
Then to add insult to injury 3 months after I had sold the property I received a court summons for non payment of council tax as the buyers solicitor hadn’t registered the flat in her name.

tanith Fri 23-Jul-21 14:56:01

My daughter is an administrator at an estate agents and spends a lot of time listening and calming down angry frustrated powerless customers. Solicitor delays are par for the course they just drag their feet and make mistakes all the time. She’s used to it now but she feels very sorry for most people trying to navigate their way through house purchase or sale. She’s had people banging the shop door and shouting at her ( door is locked and appointment has to be made by text or phone COVID related).
I can’t imagine how frustrated you are all I can suggest is ring them every day and annoy the heck out of them and don’t be polite, he who shouts loudest, and all that.

kissngate Fri 23-Jul-21 15:00:59

Our Solicitors no different than yours. Tell us nothing, dont ring or communicate whatsoever. Only when we asked about a completion date did they tell us that no searches were back and the vendors probate could be lengthy. A phone call or email just to put us in the picture would have been appreciated but no. Would not use them again. However if anyone out there is intending to move my strong advice before you appoint a solicitor is to ask if they use a search company. If they say yes AVOID, if no they do it themselves directly with local authority sign on dotted line. A friend informed us their neighbour completed in a little over 8 weeks recently including the purchase of another house (searches came back in just over two weeks) so it can be done.
You have my sympathy.

ElderlyPerson Fri 23-Jul-21 16:35:26

Not directly relevant, but perhaps revealing.

Two people with whom I was then working, mostly only to the extent that we used the same staff room for lunch and tea breaks, were telling us all about a seminar given by an outside presenter the day before on getting most done in the working day or something like that.

They disapproved of one piece of advice that had been given.

It had been to not spend any time replying to an enquiry from elsewhere in the organisation until you are asked a second time. This on the basis that if it was not really important, people won't get around to asking again.

These men were of a helpful nature and that advice jarred with their sense of behaving correctly.

I may be wrong, perhaps it has changed, but I get the impression that a lot of solicitors are effectively in a hereditary role and regard their activity as doing lesser people a favour by resolving their little problems.

So perhaps chasing them up is regarded as an impertinence.

LullyDully Fri 23-Jul-21 16:44:01

It took us 7 months from putting in an offer until moving. So amazingly frustrating, especially as it was supposedly a quick sale.

Week followed week with nothing happening. When we moved it was such a relief. Each solicitor blamed the other with nagging from the estate agent. Covid was uneasy target for blame. We have such a mad system here for house buying. I understand you can move in a week or so in Norway.

MerylStreep Fri 23-Jul-21 16:59:44

Searches. You’ve brought up another distressing flash back.😱
We were less than a week away from exchanging.
Our solicitor informed us that the buyers solicitor was querying something with the conversation of our building ( Edwardian house converted into 5 flats)
I asked him how long this would take? His reply: oh, about 6 weeks, they’re very busy.
By this time I was a gibbering wreck, thanks to him.
It was Friday afternoon and i just phoned the council. Someone somewhere was looking down on my plight and I got through to the most lovely girl who took pity on me ( I’ll admit I was crying)
She sent all relevant information I needed in a PDF via email.
I wanted to hug and kiss her 🥰

Flaxseed Fri 23-Jul-21 17:10:43

elderly person That wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest. I really do think she only acts when I contact her.
My Estate agent is lovely and keeps in regular contact with both myself and my purchasers. He has a really calm attitude, but even he is starting to sound exasperated by my solicitor!
If I was as slow at my job as she is, I would have been out on my ear a long while ago hmm

It’s reassuring to know I am not alone.

Germanshepherdsmum Fri 23-Jul-21 17:37:52

I am a fairly recently retired properly solicitor. I have never acted in the ways described here, nor would any colleague or partner of mine. However I was a partner with what you might call an upmarket firm and charged accordingly, though little or no more than the average estate agent. As with everything you get what you pay for - if you’re looking for cheap conveyancing you end up with a substandard service from someone who is probably not a qualified solicitor. It never ceased to amaze me that people paid a great deal of money to estate agents to sell their house but used cheap ‘lawyers’ who were too snowed under to provide a proper service. Appoint a lawyer based on reputation, not price. And by the way, using a search company is very efficient and cost effective.

Chewbacca Fri 23-Jul-21 17:48:24

2 years ago, I sold my house to a woman who was purchasing it as a buy-to-let, and she agreed to rent it back out to me for 8 weeks so that I could carry out updating the kitchen and bathroom of the house I was buying. It was agreed that we had a Short Term Tenancy Agreement in place. Contracts were signed and exchanged and the completion date set. 24 hours before completion, my purchaser rang me to ask me what time I would be vacating the property. When I reminded her of the STTA she said that it had been sent to my solicitor 6 weeks prior to the exchange date but had never been returned and so she'd assumed I was moving out the next day. I nearly had a heart attack. I ended up leaving work to sit in the solicitors office for 2 hours whilst she rummaged through documents trying to find the STTA and get it returned. She never apologised. Fortunately, my purchaser kindly agreed to let me remain in the house for the 8 weeks. My solicitor made an already stressful situation infinitely worse.

Germanshepherdsmum Fri 23-Jul-21 17:50:49

Property not properly!

Germanshepherdsmum Fri 23-Jul-21 17:55:18

Chewbacca obviously there was no mention of the tenancy agreement in the contract you signed - why didn’t you query that? I’m not excusing your lawyer, just trying to understand.

Infinity2 Fri 23-Jul-21 17:55:55

Flaxseed - no advice I’m afraid but I think it’s lovely you’re helping your family out in this way and good luck to all of you 🍀🍀🍀

62Granny Fri 23-Jul-21 18:02:12

We moved house 3 years ago, I used a family solicitors based in my home town and the whole process took about 10 weeks. We were lucky as the new house was empty and we didn't sell straight away. My DD works for a large corporate law firm and most of the lawyers and their support staff are working from home so this probably makes a difference , although it shouldn't.

Shandy57 Fri 23-Jul-21 18:08:13

Flaxseed, I'm sorry you are having a difficult conveyance, it really shouldn't be this hard should it.

I can see you are a marvellous Mum, would you consider involving your daughter and DP more? Could you sit down with them and make a plan? Get her to help with the kitchen packing and start using/replacing things out of the boxes? Start the deep cleaning and anyone that uses something agrees to return it to pristine condition, ie always wiping down shower doors etc? Pack up all the party ware ready to use for the birthday party? I had to do it all on my own and it is very hard, I wish I'd been able to delegate even one of the 'jobs'. Take care and don't over do it!

kissngate Fri 23-Jul-21 18:42:32

Germanshepherdsmum - I agree no doubt 'cost effective' but efficient I will have to disagree. Our LA and Utility company can turn it round in 10-15 working days, the search company our solicitor is using is saying 6-12 weeks (well that's what he's telling us!).

Chewbacca Fri 23-Jul-21 18:56:40

If the STTA had been omitted from the contract, I'd probably missed it in the melee of house selling and buying Germanshepherd. And foolishly, I'd relied on my solicitor to action the documents that she had been sent by the purchaser's solicitor. The annoying thing was she actually admitted that she'd had them but couldn't find them so they had to be sent again whilst I waited in her office. And she was a highly recommended conveyancing solicitor within a small town group practice and not at all cheap.

Germanshepherdsmum Fri 23-Jul-21 19:01:04

Well kissngate I can only suggest you ask your solicitor for an explanation.

Germanshepherdsmum Fri 23-Jul-21 19:37:55

Chewbacca I can’t comment, I don’t know what you’d call cheap. I now live near a small town and the solicitors on the local law firms’ websites seem barely out of nappies. Wouldn’t touch them with a barge pole.

Flaxseed Fri 23-Jul-21 22:56:57

I chose a solicitor from a firm in town who have been around for as long as I have lived here (over 30 years)
They have always had a good reputation. Admittedly, I didn’t know exactly what to ‘check out’ as I haven’t moved for years.
Suffice to say I’ll never use them again nor will I recommend them.
shandy My DD will help with anything I need her too, but it’s pointless deep cleaning with three adults and an almost 4 year old living here for the foreseeable future.
I just hope that packing boxes won’t take too long once I have a date!

GrannySomerset Fri 23-Jul-21 23:15:46

And yet it can be done quickly. From seeing our last house to moving in, having sold, took six weeks. The secret was that the same solicitor was handling both sales and we had to use another one to purchase. Simples! Or more probably just good luck.

Shandy57 Sat 24-Jul-21 00:27:21

Fair enough Flaxseed, of course. Craftyone recommended a box company to me, best £50 I spent. Have a look at, the double bunded boxes lasted me two moves and have folded down ready for the next one.

NotSpaghetti Sat 24-Jul-21 00:39:26

My next door neighbour just moved.
Conveyancing etc took FOUR weeks.

Bakingmad0203 Sat 24-Jul-21 07:47:36

Around here the Local Council are taking up to 12 weeks to do searches! They are blaming Covid for the back log!
A friend moved here just before Christmas last year from Scotland, it took just 5 weeks to complete the sale of her house. She had to put her furniture in storage for another 5 weeks when she moved here, as the Local Council took 10 weeks to do the Searches

Shropshirelass Sat 24-Jul-21 08:00:14

We are lucky, we have an excellent solicitor who does our conveyancing, she is sharp and very much on the ball but does experience delays from the other parties solicitors. It seems that unless you have good ones working together it will be very slow. Of course, searches take ages to come back too so there are delays there. Pity there can’t be a legal timeframe for everyone to get the paperwork through, say 12 weeks max then everyone would know where they stand. Good luck with your move.