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I have always known I could do the job and when I found out I had passed my final exam, I burst into tears of joy.
For the last six years I’ve been running my own files, but I just needed the piece of paper to prove it.
I joined the firm straight from school in 2004, first as an administrator then as a secretary. I was around lawyers all the time and I realised I liked conveyancing, so I worked my way up.
It has taken me a long time - I’ve had both my daughters since I started studying – but I’ve picked up lots of experience along the way. I also like the fact that I’ve been able to go at my own pace and fit it around normal life rather than sacrificing time with my family.
I’ve been able to go at my own pace and fit it around normal life rather than sacrificing time with my family.
There have been challenges. Preparing for my final exam was tricky as it fell during lockdown and I was juggling home schooling, work and study. It’s hard to find quiet time to revise living in a house with two kids! But in the main I’ve been lucky. My husband was really supportive so I knew if I needed to, I could go off and revise and he would take care of everything else.
I think it’s important to find a course that works for you and for me that was having tutor support. During lockdown everything moved online, but there were tutors still available to give you feedback and that really helped. If you’re struggling, you need someone to tell you where you’re going wrong.
Working for a smaller firm, I’ve been able to assist on all sorts of cases, which was invaluable and a great way to get my 1,200 hours of practical experience. My boss was fully supportive of what I was doing and would obviously overlook everything, but I’ve been running my own files and bringing my own fees in for several years now. I’m the go-to person for leasehold and new build properties and I also enjoy the more complex cases, so I’ve started to do some commercial work and sales of land.
The last 18 months have been a huge test. I remember being told that the work would die down, but it never did. Then we had the stamp duty holiday. Luckily, I enjoy being kept busy and I like a challenge!
I think the next big change will be digitising our systems, which I have been given responsibility for. It will be a whole new way of working for some people, but it’s the way the industry is going.
I love interacting with people and it’s a great feeling helping people to buy their home. I’m at the same firm I started with 17 years ago, but I still enjoy going to work every day and there’s a lot to be said for that.
I love interacting with people and it’s a great feeling helping people to buy their home.