All clients are different, coming from varying backgrounds, but despite this their questions are strikingly similarly veined. Many will have already been answered by you, but clients will ask the same questions nonetheless.
Below are the most commonly asked questions:
1. What happens if the lender goes bust? Are we safe in the property?
2. Are we allowed an office in the house?
Generally no problem: if in doubt run it past the lender – often clients prefer formal reassurance.
3. Do I need to get approval from the lender to decorate/ make kitchen or bathroom improvements?
The requirement for lender consent would only be needed for structural alterations or something requiring planning permission/building regs.
4. Am I safe if the lender sells their business (typically asked on LV cases)?
Simple answer – yes, the new company would buy subject to the client’s contract.
5. Will our property be repossessed if our family/executors do not repay within the specified time for repayment following death of the clients/the property becoming vacant?
Generally, provided the clients’ family has been proactive in trying to sell the property, and provided the property is not in negative equity, then lenders will be lenient on extending the time to repay. It is in their discretion.
6. Do I need to change my Will now I have taken out Equity Release?
I always say that it is sensible to review the Will following the equity release, as it may impact on the Will.
7.In JRL cases – am I appointing them as my Power of Attorney (due to reference to this in their documents)?
No, this purely relates to the scenario of the client being repossessed, and in that case you are authorising JRL to be able to sign on your behalf if needed.
8.In Hodge leasehold cases – why do they need the original Share Certificate, and why do they keep it post completion?
Again, this relates to a potential repossession point – that they would in that instance need those items, so Hodge take them now “just in case”.
9. Do I need to add the lender on to my insurance?
Yes but (apart from Bridgewater) only after completion, and this is required so insurers are aware there is a mortgage should there be a claim on the insurance.
10. Why do they have all of these terms and conditions?
They are onerous. I always answer this by making it clear that they are no more onerous than a normal mortgage’s terms and conditions.
Thanks to Ashfords LLP for putting these FAQs together.