Client care at GoodyBurrett

Client care at GoodyBurrett

Client care at GoodyBurrett

Client care is so important to us here at GoodyBurrett. Not only is it the right thing to do and we want to keep our clients happy, but there are also Statutory Requirements in relation to client care.

Delivery – We want to ensure that at the end of your matter, we arrive at the final outcome having kept our promises to you, our client.

Timeliness – We strive to do everything in a timely manner. If we are going to face delays due to outside influences beyond our control, you will be kept informed.

Keeping you informed – We will always provide you with comprehensive and accurate information in relation to your matter as and when we receive it.

Professionalism – Your matter will be dealt with by staff that are competent, knowledgeable, professional and client focused, who have a thorough understanding of your matter.

Staff attitude – All of our staff are approachable, friendly, and understanding of your needs. We will assist you in an open and transparent way.

At GoodyBurrett we have our Golden Principles:

# PUT YOURSELF IN THE CUSTOMER’S SITUATION – Have compassion and try to understand what the client is going through whilst remaining objective.

# FIND THE REAL ISSUE AND WHAT THE CLIENT NEEDS – Good communication skills are paramount along with the ability to listen to your client and really understand what the real issue is for them.

# INVOLVE THE CLIENT IN THE ANSWER – Talk to your client and understand their goals and outcomes.

# ACCEPT ACCOUNTABILITY – If there is a problem or an issue, personally deal with the problem as soon as you are aware of it.

# FOLLOW UP – if there has been a problem or an issue arise, once resolved, always make sure you check that the client is now satisfied.

In the words of Bill Gates,“ Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”. If we do not know what is wrong, we can’t fix it and learn from it. However, if we do not know what is right, we can’t do more of it. If there is something you are unhappy about, we need to hear from you to enable us to solve the issue. BUT … if there is something we are doing great, please do shout out to us and let us know, we’d love to hear from you too.

We are always here to help.  You can contact us via email [email protected] or call us on 01206 577676.

We are always here to help

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

Selling or buying a Property at Auction

Selling or buying a Property at Auction

Selling or buying a Property at Auction

In light of the current Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) holiday, many homeowners will be looking to move home before the deadline in March 2021. As such, more and more people are considering auctions to get a quick sale and make the most of this tax break.

Those familiar with the BBC’s ‘Homes Under the Hammer’ will be sceptical of this method, given the show’s frequent coverage of fixer uppers and abandoned sites being sold in this way. However, in this new post-outbreak market a new type of auction has emerged and with it, new opportunities for buying and selling properties.

As such, what do buyers and sellers need to know about this mysterious new way to buy and sell homes and what implications does it have for the conveyancing involved?

What is a modern Auction?

This ‘modern auction’ as it is known combines traditional marketing techniques with an eBay-style online bidding system. Initially, a local estate agent will take photos of the house and market it in the local area, much the same as if it were marketed on the open market. This however, is where the similarities end from the traditional method.

At this point the reserve price will be discussed. The reserve price will be the minimum price that you are willing to accept and a sale will not be reached if no offer reaches this value. This price is kept secret from all potential buyers and is just between you, your estate agents and the auctioneer.

The property’s ‘market price’ is set at less than the reserve price to entice in buyers on Rightmove, Zoopla and other sites. The approach here, in contrast to the traditional open market method of marketing higher than the price you expect to receive, is to entice buyers in at the low price, forcing them to bid higher and higher against their competition. After this marketing phase the auction can begin.

If everything runs according to plan, the property should sell 20 business days after the beginning of the auction for the highest bid. At the point of the digital gavel being struck, contracts are exchanged with a completion date set for 20 business days later (unless specifically requested otherwise). At this point, the buyers pay a significant non-refundable deposit to the Auction House, locking them into the sale.

After this timeframe has elapsed the property is sold and you will receive the value of the highest bid, minus the conveyancing fees and any agents’ fees that have been included.

Pros and Cons

Aside from a quick sale, there are other perks involved in selling at auction.

For starters, upon completion of the auction, contracts are then exchanged, meaning that the price is fixed. The buyer also then pays a non-refundable deposit to the auction house. This means that the likelihood of the sale of falling through is much lower, and that you are guaranteed the price agreed on auction day. Auction buyers tend to also be cash buyers, meaning that you aren’t usually dependent on a chain.

There is also the added benefit of passing on some of your fees (minus the conveyancing) onto the buyer: meaning that the highest bid at the end of the auction is what you actually receive. In some cases, the estate agent’s commission and auction fees are all paid by the buyer.

It is worth noting that you may not receive as much by selling at auctions as you would on the open market. As the buyers have to pay a higher price than they actually bid (if the fees are included), you could expect your bids to be lower as a result.

The other factor to contend with the timescale requirements related to buying at auction, you can limit the number of potential buyers . As such, it is important to consider your own personal circumstances before making a decision on how to market your property.

Effect on conveyancing

If you have decided on auctioning your property, it is important to let your conveyancer know early as they will have to prepare a legal pack in preparation for the auction and work on a very fast turnaround after the auction has ended. It is therefore imperative that your conveyancer is made aware of the timescales involved.

How can GoodyBurrett help?

If you are thinking about buying or selling your property at auction, or have any other conveyancing needs, we are here to help!  Contact us on 01206 577676 or email [email protected] 

If you would like any advice from our Conveyancing department

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

Coronavirus: An update on evictions and re-possessions

Coronavirus: An update on evictions and re-possessions

Coronavirus: An update on evictions and re-possessions

During the pandemic, the Government put certain restrictions in place to prevent evictions and possessions of properties.  Hence, protecting tenants who may struggle to pay bills during lockdown.  The Court, however, are now starting to handle these cases and new procedures have been in place for when a landlord choses to evict a tenant.  If you are a landlord, there are numerous rules and regulations you should have in mind.

The Coronavirus Act 2020 has more recently been amended by The Coronavirus Act 2020 (Tenancies: Protection from Eviction) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 and means the eviction ban ended on the 20th September 2020.  However, the rules have significantly changed:

  • Prior to 26th March 2020, a Landlord was only required to give 2 months’ notice when serving a S21 Notice;
  • Any notices served on tenants between 26th March 2020 and 29th August 2020 required at least 3 months’ notice to given;
  • Now, since 29th August 2020, landlords must give 6 months’ notice under S21 to terminate an Assured Shorthold Tenancy – a restriction which is now in place until 31st March 2021.

 

Help for Tenants

In light of the above, there are numerous ways that landlords can or will act illegally when seeking to evict tenants or when seeking to implement a rent increase.  If you are a tenant and want to understand your rights in more detail, do not hesitate to contact someone in our litigation team.  If you feel you have been treated illegally by your landlord, we would recommend the following:-

  1. Speak to your landlord as soon as possible. They may arrange a rent repayment plan if you are struggling or in arrears.  Your landlord may be willing to not evict you and allow you to pay less rent.
  2. Gather all evidence, including rent paid and when – communications with your landlord. If you or your income has been affected by Covid-19 make sure to flag it up as soon as possible.
  3. Double check that any notice given by your landlord is valid and the correct notice period has been given depending on the date you received. (See above).

 

Landlord

It is important that if you are a landlord, you are acting cautiously in terms of a notice period and providing a tenant with all the information required under a S21 notice.   With the law changing rapidly, if you are ever unsure of what notice period you should be giving when evicting a tenant, you should seek independent legal advice.

If you are a landlord who requires advice on what to do next in relation to eviction proceedings, or a tenant who is facing eviction, please contact the GoodyBurrett Civil Litigation team on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

If you would like any advice from our Family department

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

Electronic Signatures at the Land Registry

Electronic Signatures at the Land Registry

Electronic Signatures at the Land Registry

The Land Registry (‘HMLR’) has recently released notification that they plan to accept digital signatures on the paperwork they accept from conveyancers which gives effect to property transfers.

The technology and legal requirements to enable HMLR to accept digital signatures has been in place for some time but, quite wisely, HMLR have been sitting on it before taking the plunge.

There will be five categories of documents HMLR will accept with digital signatures and these include:

  • Deeds (like a typical transfer deed parties execute when buying and selling property);
  • Discharges (when releasing a charge from a property, like paying off a mortgage); and
  • Powers of attorney.

HMLR are keen to assist the progress of conveyancing as a sector and hope these changes, slated to come into effect ‘in the near future’ will assist.  While conveyancing was in a relative state of flux during the recent lockdown it is not clear whether digital signatures would have made that much difference to the speed and accessibility of completing documents.

There are also questions of security.  Property fraud is already a very real risk to homeowners, lenders and conveyancers to remove a key security feature of ‘wet signatures’ (actual signatures made by the person’s own hand) is a big step.

Mike Harlow, Land Registry’s general counsel, confirmed, ‘our hope is that in the near future qualified electronic signatures [a specific type of electronic signature which is more secure] become more commonplace and the service providers tailor their use to conveyancing. If they do develop to be a successful option for completing property transactions, we will review the use of electronic signatures [basic types of electronic signatures] and may withdraw their acceptance, which would leave only the more secure qualified electronic signatures in use.’

Further news from HMLR is hotly awaited.

If you are looking to buy or sell your home, GoodyBurrett will happily provide you with a free, no obligation quote or maybe you would like to make a new or amend your existing Will and or Lasting Power of Attorney?  Our Private Client team would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.  You can contact us via telephone 01206 577676 or email [email protected] for more information.

 

If you have any questions on the above points

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

Stamp Duty Update Thursday 9th July 2020

Stamp Duty Update Thursday 9th July 2020

The Chancellors Mini Budget – Stamp Duty Update Thursday 9th July 2020:

Yesterday the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak MP, announced temporary increases to the Stamp Duty Land Tax nil rate bands for residential property to take effect immediately and remain in effect until 31 March 2021.

Noting that property transactions fell by 50% in May, and that uncertainty continues to affect the housing market, the Chancellor announced that the property value at which Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) begins to be paid will be raised from £125,000 at present to £500,000 in the tables covering standard purchases and purchases where the consideration consists of or includes the net present value of the rental element for leasehold acquisitions.

For purchases liable to the Higher Rates for Additional Dwellings, the 3% band is increased from £125,000 to £500,000.

The measure applies to transactions that are completed or substantially performed between 8 July 2020 and 31 March 2021 inclusive. The temporary rates do not apply where the transaction was substantially performed before 8 July 2020.  This page on GOV.UK contains more information –https://www.gov.uk/guidance/stamp-duty-land-tax-temporary-reduced-rates.

If you are looking at purchasing a property, feel free to contact us for a free no obligation quote.  Click here to contact us or email [email protected] / call us on 01206 577676

 

If you have any questions on the above points

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]

Stamp Duty Update Thursday 9th July 2020

The Chancellors Mini Budget – Stamp Duty Update

The Chancellors Mini Budget – Stamp Duty Update

Since Rishi Sunak hinted that stamp Duty Land Tax (‘SDLT’) was going to be updated the property market has been holding its breath. Happily, we can all now breathe out because firm details have emerged:

  • The chancellor announces he will cut stamp duty to reinvigorate the housing market.
  • The threshold for stamp duty will increase from £125,000 to £500,000. The cut will be temporary, running until 31 March 2021, and will take effect immediately.

This is a very helpful headline and, for some, will answer all the questions and assist transactions looking to move forward.  However, what is unclear is if this threshold increase will potentially extend to commercial properties? What happens to the higher rate payable on second properties? Will that threshold change/ be affected?

While the increase in the threshold is certainly welcome, realistically, this won’t assist everyone in the region.  First time buyers are already exempt from SDLT and with the average house price in East Anglia being £341,072 it won’t take too may extra bells and whistles for house transactions to exceed the £500,00 threshold. 

Despite this analysis any tax break is certainly welcome at this time and it will be interesting to see how houses will be priced in view of this favourable SDLT bracket and whether people will be selling for less in order to allow buyers to use this tax break.

If you are thinking of moving or purchasing a property feel free to contact us for a free, no obligation quote.  Email [email protected] or call us on 01206 577676.

 

If you have any questions on buying or selling a property

Contact GoodyBurrett on 01206 577676 or email [email protected]