Purchase

guideStage 1: Pre-Contract

  • You have made your offer and it has been accepted. Pass your solicitor’s details to the Estate Agents or to the Seller if it is a direct sale. Before you make your offer, it is advisable to have received a mortgage offer in principle, or at least know how much you can borrow to avoid delays later. Find out if the Sellers have a related purchase and what stage that transaction is at.
  • Your solicitors will contact the Seller’s solicitors to confirm they are acting for you and the Seller’s solicitors will draw up and send draft contract and other supporting documents to your solicitors.
  • Your solicitors will carry out their local search with the local authority and conduct other relevant searches, check the title and contract papers and raise enquiries on your behalf with the Seller’s solicitors.
  • Upon receiving replies from the Seller’s solicitors to the enquiries raised, your solicitors will report to you, advising you on the terms of the contract and the results of their searches and will also send you a copy of the replies to their enquiries.

Stage 2: Exchange of Contracts

  • If you are happy with your solicitor’s report and decide to proceed with the transaction, and your solicitors have received a copy of your mortgage offer they will send you the agreed contract and mortgage deed to sign, which you must return to them. You will usually be asked to pay the deposit (usually 10% of the purchase price) at this stage.
  • You will usually need to arrange for building insurance cover for the property to take effect from the date contracts are exchanged.
  • Completion dates are agreed with you and the Seller’s Solicitors and contracts are exchanged. The deposit gets paid to the Seller’s solicitors at this stage.

Stage 3: Pre-completion

  • Your solicitors will confirm to you that contracts have been exchanged and confirm the completion/moving date to you.
  • You are advised at this stage to arrange your removals, inform your utility providers, arrange mail re-direction/send out change of address cards – get organised it makes moving less stressful!
  • Your solicitor draws up and sends the Transfer Deed to the Seller’s solicitors and reports to your mortgage lender requesting mortgage funds.
  • Your solicitor carries out final searches, sends you a financial statement and requests balance of purchase price from you if the mortgage fund does not cover this.

Stage 4: Completion

  • Mortgage lender sends your solicitors mortgage funds
  • Completion takes place, you pick up the keys and move into the property at last you can put your feet up and enjoy your new home … after unpacking of course!

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SALE

Stage 1: Pre-contract

  • 1-2You agree the sale with the Buyer and pass your solicitor’s details to the Estate Agents if they don’t already have it.
  • Estate Agents send particulars of sale to your solicitors. You will usually get a copy.
  • Your solicitors obtain the title deeds to the property from your mortgage lender if there is an outstanding mortgage on the property or from you if there isn’t and obtains Land Registry title documents as well.
  • Your solicitor sends you forms to complete providing information about the property
  • Your solicitor prepares and sends draft contact and other supporting documents to the Buyer’s solicitors.
  • Your solicitor deals with any enquiries raised by the Buyer’s solicitors and when the contract is approved, sends it to you to sign and return.

Stage 2: Exchange of Contracts

  • Your solicitor checks and agrees moving date with you and the Buyer’s solicitor.
  • You authorise exchange of contracts.
  • Contracts are exchanged.

Stage 3: Pre-completion

  • Your solicitor confirms completion date with you.
  • You are advised at this stage to arrange your removals, inform your utility providers, arrange mail re-direction/send out change of address cards – get organised it makes moving less stressful!
  • Your solicitor requests a statement from your mortgage lender showing the amount required to repay your mortgage.
  • Your solicitor approves the Transfer Deed and sends it to you to sign and return.
  • You make arrangements to vacate the property.

Stage 4: Completion

  • You move out of the property and hand the keys over the Estate Agent or the Seller direct
  • Your solicitor settles your mortgage account, pays the Estate Agents their commission (if you so instruct) and sends you any surplus

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