Conveyancing solicitors jargon buster

As is also the case with the rest of the legal profession, it can sometimes feel as if conveyancing solicitors are part of a conspiracy to bamboozle you through a dizzying array of convoluted expressions and  obscure acronyms. Your conveyancing solicitor will seek to make the situation as clear as possible but to demysitfy the whole experience before your consult, below is listed a glossary of terms you are likely to encounter.


At risk of appearing patronising, confirmation of what the term encompasses and how it involves conveyancing solicitors seems like a good place to start. Conveyancing is essentially the legal transfer of ownership of a property from one party to another. The role of a conveyancing solicitors firm is to ensure that legal requirements are met and the proper paperwork is completed so that ownership can be positively established.

Home Information Pack (HIP)

Conveyancing solicitors acting for sellers of a property must ensure that this information, also know as a Seller's Pack, is available to the buyer. In the packs, conveyancing solicitors have to include up-to-date information about the property which involves documents such as Energy Performance Certificates, local authority searches and property information questionnaires.

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

This is one of the documents that conveyancing solicitors are required to include in a HIP. It includes information on a the home's energy use and recommendations on how to improve it.

Property Information Questionnaire (PIQ)

From April 2009, conveyancing solicitors must also include this document in a HIP. For a PIQ, conveyancing solicitors ask vendors to provide general information on their property covering things like parking, common areas and property damage caused by flood or fire.

Local authority search

This is a list of questions conveyancing solicitors ask the local authority about the property the buyer is interested in. Matters that conveyancing solicitors can gain information on include planning permission and road proposals. The standard search will only cover the boundaries of the property you are buying though and often it is worth making sure your conveyancing solicitor applies for a wider search covering other nearby properties to give you a broader picture.

Title deed

This is the legal document that proves the seller owns the property. A conveyancing solicitor will usually obtain this from the seller's mortgage lender.

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