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In conversation: Conveyancing in Portishead – meet Chris Perkins, specialist residential conveyancer and Associate with Wards Solicitors

  • 3rd Feb 2015


When did you come to Wards?

I joined Wards in our Portishead office in October 1998. I had been working before that, since qualification, in Bristol.

Why did you want to make the move to Portishead?

For me it was a home coming, as my parents lived there. I was brought up in Portishead, and attended St Peter’s Junior School and Gordano Comprehensive School, before moving away for higher education.

Why did your parents choose Portishead?

My parents moved to Portishead in the 60s, for my Father to teach at Gordano School. My father bought a housing plot in Nailsea, but my mother made him sell it as she said it was not close enough for the new job!

Why conveyancing?

I like property related issues, but also with conveyancing there is usually a positive outcome and sense of achievement. I like being able to help people achieve what they want.  I understand that a house purchase is one of the biggest decisions and purchases that most people will ever make and have real sympathy with the stresses involved.

What’s you biggest asset at work?

It’s more a question of who rather than what! We are lucky to have great technology and support, which means we do all the usual things to help communication with clients and other relevant parties. However I am very lucky to have a wonderful secretary and assistant: Sam Dodd and an assistant secretary: Lynda Chenoweth who, together, keep everything running smoothly.

Is there anything you dislike about conveyancing?

Probably the same things that upset clients and make things more difficult for them. Namely the fact that a completion date can be an ever moving target (excuse the pun!). It is a downside of the conveyancing system.  As is the ‘red tape’ in general. We have to deal with this as it’s the job, but it can be a real downside when clients think we are getting in the way of their move. In particular dealings with mortgage lenders become more challenging almost on a daily basis. Layers of call options and 30 min call queues with music on a loop, is no fun for any of us!

You must have seen first-hand a great deal of charge in Portishead?

Yes most certainly. The new marina area, of course. The demolition of the Power Station and the blowing up of the four chimneys. The change from an industrial area to residential is a huge change. The now large number of supermarkets.  Schools I knew as well have also become retirement homes. All good for business though and I have been involved with the new developments as they and the area has evolved on a professional level.

Are there any particular issues to be aware of, when dealing with property in Portishead?

There is the impact of the old oil pipeline and also the arrangements for the management of the old sea walls and the Wildlife Refuge Area. The management arrangements for Marina area developments can be quite complex, particularly for the flats. Up to three different companies can be involved, which can be expensive for clients. The arrangements have changed and it can be difficult to work out whom we need to contact. This is even for seasoned local experts such as myself. Non-local conveyancers can find the arrangements difficult to grasp, which poses its challenges.

You can contact Chris Perkins on 01275 850460 or e-mail him directly at chris.perkins@wards.uk.com

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