Dodd & Vaughton are a firm of Licensed Conveyancers (specialist property lawyers), based in Flitwick, Bedfordshire, who deal solely in residential property transactions. Conveyancing is not just part of our business, it's all of our business and we are 100% committed to providing total client satisfaction.
The knowledge and experience of our licensed conveyancers, who have over 100 years combined experience, ensures that any problems, however big or small, are dealt with quickly, efficiently and effectively.
Meet the team - your named contact
Alison qualified as a Licensed Conveyancer in 1997. Alison joined the firm in 2005 and subsequently became a Director in 2006. Alison is experienced in residential property transactions, and has over 20 years new build experience.
Dan joined the firm in 2007 as a Trainee Licensed Conveyancer. Dan qualified in 2009 and is a Director of the Company. Dan is experienced in all areas of residential conveyancing.
Tom joined the Company in 2005 and has worked in all areas of it. Having gained considerable experience in all facets of a conveyancing matter, he was made a director in 2019.
For a free, no obligation estimate of costs and disbursements, please complete the form and a member of our team will be in contact with you.
You can view an example of an estimate of costs and disbursements you will receive from us.
In accordance with the requirements of our regulatory body, you can view this firm's standard terms of engagement which you will be required to sign on instruction by clicking here .
You can also view our Service Information - Key stages of our services , which sets out the key stages of your proposed transaction.
Find the answers to frequently asked questions below.
Conveyancing is the process of legally transferring ownership of a property or land. For example, this would be required when you buy or sell a property or remortgage.
The stamp duty land tax relief for first time buyers ended on 24th March 2012. Therefore stamp duty will be payable in every purchase of a property for more than £125,000. Please see HMRC's SDLT Calculation page
The Conveyancing process takes on average six to twelve weeks. This can vary however depending on the length of the "chain" of connected transactions and the complexity of the transaction.
The Conveyancing process comprises of three stages, and there are tasks to be carried out at each:
The main reason for a survey is so you and the lender can find out whether the property is actually worth the amount you have agreed to pay for it. There are 3 main types of surveys available and they vary greatly in price:
When choosing between the different types of survey, you need to remember that once you have bought the property you will be responsible for any repairs or major work that needs to be done. If you go for a more detailed report from the outset this will hopefully enable you to make a more informed decision on whether the property is worth the asking price and will put you in a stronger negotiating position in relation to price. If you need help making a choice then speak to your Conveyancer.
There are two ways in which the property can be held, either as "joint tenants" or "tenants in common". It is extremely important to consider the different options available to co-own a property.
When you co-own a property as joint tenants, each co-owner owns the whole of the property and neither owner has a specific or identifiable share.
If you sell the property, you are each entitled to half the sale proceeds regardless of how much you each contributed to the purchase price or to the mortgage repayments. Neither co-owner has a separate share in the property that can be sold.
When you die, the surviving co-owners will automatically own the whole of the property, regardless of any wishes you may have made in your Will regarding the property. This is called the Right of Survivorship.
If a property is held under a joint tenancy, you can't leave it to someone else in your Will. It will automatically transfer to the other Joint Tenant.
This type of ownership is ideal for couples who wish to leave property to each other when they die.
However, if you enter a joint tenancy agreement and have children from a previous marriage or relationship, it could mean that when you die, your children will not inherit a share of that property.
For initial advice and guidance on writing a Will or how buying a property can affect your estate, please see Making a Will.
If you currently own property jointly as joint tenants, it is possible to change it into tenants in common. This is called a Notice of Severance.
You might wish to do this for a number of reasons, such as a change in your relationship with the co-owner or to put your half of the property into a trust. As the majority of properties are registered at the Land Registry, this will involve an application being made to add a note to the register of the title to the property.
If you co-own a property as tenants in common, each co-owner owns a specific share of the property. This is typically a 50% share each, however it is possible to hold unequal shares.
As you each own a separate share in the property you are all entitled to leave your individual share to your chosen beneficiaries in your Will. If you do not have a Will when you die, your share will pass to your nearest living blood relatives according to the Rules of Intestacy (law).
A tenancy in common agreement is ideal for people who wish to own property jointly with their partner but wish to leave their share of the property to someone else when they die. It is also appropriate for people who have children from a previous marriage as they can guarantee that their children will benefit from their estate when they die, provided they have written a Will.
People worried about the cost of care home fees can also benefit from this type of ownership as by owning property as tenants in common, should you require full time care in the future, you will only be means tested on your share of the property, meaning you can potentially reduce the amount of care fees payable.
Please ensure that your specific situation is discussed in detail with your conveyancer before proceeding with your purchase.
A written and signed agreement made between the buyer and seller. It will give full details of the property and all of the other terms and conditions of the sale that have been agreed.
Fees that must be paid to third parties such as Local Authorities (for searches) and Land Registry.
A certificate that rates your home from A to G on how efficiently it uses energy. These must come from an accredited Energy Assessor who visits the property to collect the relevant data and provide the certificate. This data includes the date, construction and location of the house, and relevant fittings such as heating systems, insulation or double-glazing.
The point at which contracts become legally binding and a completion date is formally agreed.
A type of land ownership which, in effect, runs forever.
A type of land ownership for a fixed term of years.
The formal document making an offer of a loan under a mortgage which will say how much the loan is for, the period and the amount of repayment and all of the terms and conditions attached to the loan.
The buyer's Conveyancer will carry out searches as part of the Conveyancing process. They are done to check that there are no problems with the property. The usual searches that will carried out are a Local Authority search, Drainage and Water search and the Environmental/Contaminated land search. There are other more specific searches that may also be carried out depending on the requirement of a mortgage lender and which part of the country the property is in.
Examples of these are:
A tax payable to the Government on the completion of the purchase of a property or land. The amount of duty depends on its purchase price (see HMRC's SDLT Calculation page )
Whenever I phoned with a query, Dodd & Vaughton were straight on the case and always got back to me with the answer promptly. It means a lot when people call back when they say they will. I will not hesitate to recommend you.
Mrs D, Flitwick
...exceptionally happy with the service, very professional, everything was made clear and nothing was too much trouble. Superb service and highly recommended.
Ms N, Bedford
Dodd & Vaughton were very thorough and explained what was happening step by step. The secretaries were extremely efficient and kept me up to date, calling exactly when they said they would. Overall an excellent service.
Miss H, Flitwick
...I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the excellent service you have provided.
You may also be interested to note that the developers considered the speed of the transfer of funds on completion was possibly a world record.
Mr S, Ampthill
My sale and purchase were dealt with in a very professional manner but the aspect I was particularly pleased with was the kind, attentive and personal way in which it was handled. Thank you so much.
Mrs S, Flitwick
We aim to resolve any complaint you have about the service we have given you as quickly as possible. If you are unable to sort things out with the person who has been dealing with you, please contact either Ian Dodd or Alison Gill. Once we have received your complaint, Ian Dodd or Alison Gill will write to you within 7 days to explain how your complaint will be investigated if a complete response to your complaint has not been made by that time. You will be told the latest date by which a complete answer will be given to your complaint (this should not be more than 28 days after we received your complaint). If you have made the complaint verbally - either at a meeting or on the telephone - we will set out in our full response our understanding of the nature of your complaint.
The assessment of the complaint will be based upon a sufficient and fair investigation. We will explain in writing our findings and where the complaint is upheld will offer remedial action or redress. This will be actioned promptly.
If you are dissatisfied with any aspect of our handling of your complaint, please feel free to contact another Director of the firm who will conduct a separate review of your complaint. You will be told about the conclusion of this review within 28 days.
If after following the review process you remain dissatisfied with any aspect of our handling of your complaint, you may contact directly the Legal Ombudsman to ask them to consider the complaint further: Telephone number : 0300 555 0333 : e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Website : https://legalombudsman.org.uk. Address : Legal Ombudsman, P O Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ.
Unless it agreed that there are good reasons not to do so, the Legal Ombudsman will expect you to allow us to consider and respond to your complaint in accordance with the procedure set out above in the first instance. You can refer your complaint up to 6 months after you have received our final written response to your complaint. You can also use the Ombudsman service if we have not resolved your complaint within 8 weeks of us receiving it. A complaint can be referred to the Legal Ombudsman up to six years from the date of the act or omission or up to three years after discovering a problem. The ombudsman deals with service related complaints; any conduct related complaints will be referred to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
Alternative complaint bodies exist under the EU Consumer ADR 2015. The current ADR entities available to deal with disputes in the legal sector are: Ombudsman Services (www.ombudsman-services.org), ProMediate (www.Promediate.co.uk); Small Claims Mediation (www.small-claims-mediation.co.uk) ("Alternative Complaints Bodies").
We do not currently agree to use the Alternative Complaints Bodies.
If you make a valid claim against us for a loss arising out of work for which we are legally responsible, and we are unable to meet our liability in full, you may be entitled to claim from the Compensation Fund administered by the Council for Licensed Conveyancer (from whom details can be obtained).