How to Help First-Time Buyers Deal with the Conveyancing Process
When you’re a nascent conveyancing professional, understanding the technical elements of your discipline is obviously vital grounding, but it doesn’t prepare you fully for the demands of the job.
You also need to know how to deal with people, and how to deploy that understanding in a way that proves maximally productive.
It’s always important to be delicate, but it’s particularly vital when you’re helping first-time buyers because they’ll be relying entirely on your guidance (they might have no idea what to expect). In this post, we’re going to set out some tips for taking first-time buyers through conveyancing in a way that minimises disruption and maximises contentment.
Explain the process using clear language
For those who haven’t studied the law, legalese can be decidedly confusing (well, it can still be frustratingly dense for those who have studied the law). First-time buyers might have no grounding in what conveyancing involves, making it necessary to explain it to them so they’re not taken by surprise, but you mustn’t simply barrage them with technical terms (even freehold and leasehold might be unfamiliar to some).
Instead, break everything down into simple steps, explaining what is and isn’t needed from them along the way. Conveyancing can feel somewhat opaque from a buyer’s perspective — the process gets underway, mysterious events occur, and eventually a conclusion is reached — so the more you can reassure them that there are consistent steps, the easier it’ll be to wait.
This will also help them trust you, because house purchases can fall through easily enough and it can be bitterly disappointing. Not only will this keep them from getting irritated with you (and making your life harder), but it will also make them more likely to recommend you once the process has been successfully concluded, giving you valuable referral traffic.
Prime them on what comes after completion
The aforementioned referrals don’t just depend on you ensuring that the house purchases you’re arranging are promptly finalised. They also depend on the overall experiences of the buyers: experiences that include the resulting moves and any related issues. While you can’t control those experiences, you can give relevant advice and be as broadly supportive as possible so you’re remembered in the most favourable light.
For example, while you’re bringing the process to its end, take some time to speak to your clients about what they can expect as new homeowners. Have they thought about how they’ll move their possessions? Do they know what insurance policies they’ll want? If they haven’t pursued contents insurance quotes from companies like Admiral, recommend that they do so after explaining that protection really needs to be in place immediately after moving.
Have they thought about how they’re going to budget for their new situations? First-time buyers might not know what it’s like to have so many financial responsibilities, and it can cause some unpleasant surprises, so giving them a solid grounding will help a great deal. Again, by helping them with some general advice, you’ll make their lasting memory of you so much more positive.
Be honest about possible obstacles
Things can go wrong with the conveyancing process, even if you do absolutely everything correctly. Surveys can identify major issues that affect valuations, or be delayed for various reasons. Sellers can reconsider and look for ways out. Paperwork can be lost or mishandled. Pandemics can break out. And in the plausible event that you oversee a first-time buy that ends up collapsing, you want to avoid being blamed for it (this can happen if you’re not careful).
The key to avoiding it is being honest about what can go wrong instead of guaranteeing that things will work out when there’s no way you can be sure of it. Explain to your client that you’ll do your part correctly but they should know the risks and not get too disheartened if they ultimately need to start their search again. They’ll appreciate the guidance, and if something does go wrong and they need to find another place, they’ll want to keep working with you.
These are the vital elements to helping first-time buyers get through conveyancing. If you can ensure optimal clarity, position them to hit the ground running when things are done, and keep them poised to deal with potential roadblocks, you’ll keep them on your side and end up earning some valuable referrals.
Stevie Nicks is Digital Editor at Just Another Magazine – a website that covers the topics you care about. You’ll find articles about lifestyle, travel, fashion, trends and relationships on our site – each of which is written in our unique style
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