Is your solicitor paying your estate agent a referral fee?
Referral fees are fees which some solicitors pay to estate agents in order for the estate agent to refer the work to them. This earns an additional fee for the agent, and whilst the solicitor will get the work referred to them,it means they end up with a net reduction in their own fee since some of the amount that they charge the client for the conveyancing will end up being paid on to estate agents.
The way solicitors who pay referral fees generally cater for this is by charging their clients a higher fee to cover the cost of having to pay the referral fee, or by taking on as many conveyancing matters as they can in order to fill the income gap with a high volume of cases. This can end up with a client either being overcharged, or else facing significant delays in their transaction or having difficulty in getting a response out of their solicitor, since their solicitor may have too many transactions on to be able to give their client a proper service.
Lawson Lewis Blakers do not pay estate agents referral fees,and we never have. Instead, we charge our clients fairly and provide a quality service. Not all estate agents seek referral fees either, and there are a number of estate agents who will frequently recommend us to clients because they just think we do a good job (if we’re not going to pay them a referral fee, why else would they recommend us?).
When your estate agent recommends that you use a certain solicitor, it’s worth asking them why they recommend them and whether that solicitor will pay them a referral fee. If they are going to receive a referral fee, that might be a real indication of the quality of the service you should expect from that solicitor.
To enquire about conveyancing with fair, transparent charges and quality service, call us on 01323 720142.