Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Report on Title - Time Saving Calculator

Do you shut yourself off in a quiet room at the office for hours a week or come into work early to work on this critical and time consuming document?


Is it possible that you are wasting valuable time?  What a sad depressing thought. Surely there has to be a better way to generate a Report on Title.

Lexsure have created a calculator to help you add up all the hours and assess how much time the e-ROT might be able to save you.The table below shows how much time firms are spending based on feedback to date:



Use the calculator to get an approximation of time that you may be able to save,


Lexsure’s e-ROT Brings increased protection, consistency and efficiency to building the most important  - yet tedious and time-consuming - document in a purchase transaction.


The e-ROT webinars are taking place this April. You can book here.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Conveyancers - What would you do with an extra day a month?

Most conveyancing lawyers I consult with complain that they don’t have enough time, but what would you do if you had an “extra day” a month? Would you do all those things you said you'd do; enjoy a day at a spa, actually take a lunch break, arrange time with family or friends or simply have a little quality ‘me’ time relaxing over a good book?


The average lawyer that I come across completes ten purchase cases a month. For some this number can be as high as 25.


Without exception, lawyers inform me that the most time consuming part of the conveyancing process is the Report on Title. The recent Lexsure ‘Time is Money’ survey revealed that lawyers spend an hour or more on drafting a Report on Title, regardless of whether they have a case management system. Even if you’re one of the fortunate lawyers who enjoys producing this document, the time it takes is at best an inconvenience.


It strikes me as odd that despite technological advances in the conveyancing process this most important and time-consuming document has not received proper attention. Taking to heart the old adage “a solicitor’s time is his stock-in-trade” Lexsure has an automated Report on Title (e-ROT) reducing the average time to prepare a Report on Title to 5 minutes. Using an average of 10 cases a month that equates to a saving of over 9 hours a month….the equivalent of a working day.


Whist the primary reason to upgrade your Report on Title should be about reducing risk, a side benefit of the e-ROT is that it should enable you to be more efficient, reduce your stress levels and result in you having more free time. Now all that’s left for you to do is decide how you’re going to use that extra day, whether it be all in one go or by giving yourself an extra hour here or there!


To find out more about the e-ROT please pick from one of the four free webinars in April.

Thursday, 9 March 2017

New Building Society Requirements for New Build

Principality Building Society have changed their CML handbook requirements to section 6.7.1 extending the obligation to the solicitors acting on their behalf.

When it comes to checking on acceptable warranty schemes for new build or newly converted properties, lawyers are now expected to ensure that the level of cover available under the warranty will be sufficient to meet the rebuilding cost of the property. A calculation will be necessary when the proposed security forms part of a continuous structure.

To be notified when lenders are introducing similar requirements or changes click here

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Lenders Start to Change Ground Rules on Ground Rent

Image result for ground rent

Leasehold as a tenure received quite a lot of bad press in 2016 with the BBC and broadsheets such as the Telegraph  pointing to the risk of people buying homes with escalating ground rents. This culminated in the Government saying that it would reform leasehold property after a campaign by charities and MPs to challenge the arrangements.

With a heightened sense of concern relating to ground rents lenders are now reacting via changes to their individual versions of their CML Handbook or BSA Mortgage Instructions.

In the last few weeks I have seen a number of mainstream lenders amended their instructions to conveyancing lawyers specifically concerning ground rent.

For some lenders such as Yorkshire Building Society a change was made to section 5.14.9. This lender now imposes the following requirements:

With regard to ground rent, please note that we have the following additional requirements to those set out in Part 1 of Section 5.14.9
* the ground rent must not be capable of being increased during the first 21 years
* the ground rent cannot be open-ended i.e. it must not be capable of being increased to an unspecified amount.

Should your firm wish to me made aware of changes to lender requirements please sign up to receive lender notifications.

Monday, 6 February 2017

Upgrading your Report on Title: What Should you be Adding?

Is there a more important and time-consuming document in the conveyancing process than the Report on Title? Yet most firms do not update this critical precedent more than once every couple of years. 

Lexsure have arranged a 30 minute webinar by one of their conveyancing experts focusing on what a Report on Title should cover and what some of the more progressive firms are now including by way of advice and caveats in their Report on Titles. 

The webinar, amongst other matters, will shed some light on: 

-New areas of clarification for buyers and precedent wording 
-Should you have one precedent or many?
-How new technologies can recycle newly drafted sections 
-Leasehold sections - a focus on unexpired lease terms.

The webinar is scheduled for Midday 1st March 

Solicitors interested in the webinar can register here

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Santander Update 'Acceptable' New Home Warranty Schemes

Santander have just updated Section 6.7.1 of their CML Handbook Part 2 instructions to read: 

1 NHBC Buildmark
2 Premier Guarantee (New Homes; Self Build; Completed Housing)
3 BLP (Building Life Plans) residential housing warranty insurance (BLP Secure; BLP Secure Plus)
4 BOPAS (Build Offsite Property Assurance Scheme)
5 LABC Warranty (New Homes; Self Build; Completed Housing)
6 Build Zone 10 year warranty (New Home; Self Build;Completed Housing; Basic)
7 Checkmate New Home Warranty (Castle 10; Knight 10)
8 CRL Structural Defect Insurance
9 Build Assure New Homes 10 year Structural Defects Insurance
10 Global Home Warranties 10 year Structural Defect Insurance
11 Q Assure Build (Q Policy for Residential Properties)
12. Advantage (AHCI Latent Defects Insurance Policy)
13. Aedis Structural Warranties (New Build 10; Self Build 10)
14. Capital Warranties (New Build; Self Build; Completed Housing)
15. International Construction Warranties (ICW Residential New Build UK)
16. Protek (New Home; Custom Build; Self Build; Completed Housing)

Law firms, especially those on the Santander conveyancing panel need to take note. 

Other lenders, who in the last 24 hours changed their answer to Section 6.7.1, include New Life Mortgages as well as Alliance & Leicester. For lender updates subscribe to LENDERmonitor

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Metro Bank Updates CML Handbook Post 2 Instructions

Metro Bank PLC have just updated 15 sections of their CML Handbook Instructions. Some of the more notable section changes include : 

5.4.6- Does the lender accept search insurance and, if yes, what are the lender's specific requirements?

5.14.1- What minimum unexpired lease term does the lender accept?

5.20.1- Does the lender require me to report to them where the lease does not meet the CML minimum requirements for leases of roof space for solar PV panels?

7.3- Does the lender require a consent to mortgage from all occupants aged 17 or over?

Lawyers on the Metro Bank Conveyancing Panel in particular should take note. To see the changes click here