This week’s top contribution is from Arron Bardoe for his response to the article: Lenders and brokers should give clients conveyancing price and service data – Conveyancing Association.
He wrote: “I agree conveyancers need to be more transparent with their pricing and would make a couple of suggestions.
“Firstly, solicitors should always disclose their costs including VAT. I constantly see quotes given to clients that either exclude VAT or show the words ‘+VAT’.
“One might consider it an attempt to make the price look lower than it really is and that is not the behaviour we should expect from professionals.
“The Advertising Standards Agency has ruled several times on this to say that a VAT exclusive price should only [be] quoted where the business would expect most of its buyers to enjoy the net price.
“However, residential and buy-to-let purchases are almost exclusively non-reclaimable or exempt, so the ASA is clear the VAT inclusive price must be disclosed.
“Secondly, many conveyancing referral firms have approached me over the years with the initial line of how much I can add to the price.
“Sometimes £200 and others indicate no limit at all.
“Surely, the first sales line should be service as suggested?
“Personally, I would rather a great service over an extra few pounds.
“Sadly, this sales pitch may also be a slur on mortgage advisers, as one might infer that they use this line as it is the most successful in persuading my peers to talk to them.
“Whatever is decided, it would help if the Law Society/Solicitors Regulation Authority support the Conveyancing Association’s efforts and this becomes an industry wide standard.”