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Help -Extra fees added at last minute

(11 Posts)
Beingrippedoff Thu 23-Feb-17 10:37:12

We are selling our house privately (in Scotland) and got a sale quotation from solicitor before we started which we agreed. Today, as we are handing over the keys they have said that they are adding an extra £1200 to bill for work that was done when we had previously tried to sell the house with them 3 years ago. At that time we took house off market and settled the account with them. I can't believe this is happening. We are livid angry
Surely this is not legal! Of course we are going to complain but looking for others opinions on this in the meantime. We had no choice but to pay otherwise sale will not go through.

Collaborate Thu 23-Feb-17 10:56:49

They can't refuse to complete on the sale due to a disputed bill. You should stand your ground.

Beingrippedoff Thu 23-Feb-17 11:28:31

Well they also slipped in today that despite the buyers getting the keys tomorrow we don't get our money till next Wednesday!

Rangirl Thu 23-Feb-17 13:11:13

If the payment for the house is being made by a solicitor's cheque and the payment to you by a direct transfer tat is standard practice as a direct transfer requires cleared funds and a solicitor's cheque is not cleared funds

If you paid the bill 3 years ago they cannot charge you again

Was it the partner you saw today/Did you say anything and what was the response.

Email whoever you saw saying you paid 3 years ago and will not be paying again.Ask for their confirmation within 24 hours, say close of business tomorrow that they will not whip the £1200 off the proceeds of sale

If you get no satisfaction ask to speak to the Client relations Partner

Rangirl Thu 23-Feb-17 13:14:19

Sorry posted too soon
They certainly cannot hold up your sale for this.Apart from anything else you would then be in breach of contract with your purchasers
Never heard of this in 25+ years in practice
Phone them now and get them to confirm sale ging ahead If not ask for Client relations Partner

Beingrippedoff Thu 23-Feb-17 17:14:24

Sale will be going ahead but we've put it in writing that signing the paperwork and handing over keys does not mean we accept their fees. The partner is on holiday till next week so we've been told we can't get any answers till then.
As for delayed payment, that's all very well if you are told in advance but we were expecting the money tomorrow and need it before end of month which we now won't get. Had we been told this we would have moved completion date back a few days to accommodate this delay. To my mind it's completely unprofessional to not make this clear at the start, because not a single layperson I've asked about this was aware that this is standard practice. Given that usually people complete sale/buying new house on same day a 5 day delay is completely out of the blue and extremely inconvenient for us. It means as well as their extra fees we will have an additional £1000 in costs of things that we now can't buy until March ie when winter sales have all ended. It's a huge problem for us, and pretty much compounds the misery of the whole sale for us (long story involving illness/litigation meaning we are selling at absolute worst time and resulting are already losing a fortune on this sale.)

user1487194234 Thu 23-Feb-17 20:55:23

Fully appreciate that it is a very serious inconvenience to you It is however a banking fact that the money can't be sent to you by direct payment until it is cleared Did they have offer you a cheque payment
The sale/purchase analogy is different as the purchase will be made by cheque

Beingrippedoff Thu 23-Feb-17 21:13:43

No offer of cheque payment, just wait 5 days and then we will get it. Why on earth would they not just tell you this in advance though??

Beingrippedoff Thu 02-Mar-17 18:37:55

Ok update. They have taken the extra money off us, and partner we spoke to today said it's commission because the buyers viewed the property when we marketed with them in the past. That contract was terminated 2 years ago.
They did not mention this in their quote
They even said that even if we had done the conveyancing with someone else they would have come after us for commission because they 'found' the buyer!
We were actually marketing the house for the rental market with a different solicitor when the buyers approached us asking if we would sell!!
Also the fees note doesn't mention commission but details lots of marketing etc which was not done for this sale. We literally asked them to do conveyancing and nothing else!

oleoleoleole Thu 02-Mar-17 18:41:34

Go and seek advice from CAB or another solicitor.

user1487194234 Thu 02-Mar-17 23:06:46

That all sounds very odd
Normally when a property is on the market the seller is subject to a sole selling agreement So if anyone puts in an offer that you accept during the period of the ssa you have to pay the agreed commission even if purchaser does not come via the agent
Conversely if the property does not sell or you decide to take it off the market for whatever reason then subject to the required notice and paying any costs due e.g. Advertising the ssa is at an end
If you put property back on market then the original agency is not due anything

It will depend on exactly what your agreement says

I would check that then ask for a meeting with Client relationship partner

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