How the conveyancing process works for buyers

We believe that buying a property should be a positive experience. If you’re a first time buyer, it should be something to look back on with pleasure as a great life experience. So why is it that people regard moving house as one of the most stressful things that someone can do?

Well, there’s a lot of paperwork and unfamiliar processes to go through, and solicitors don’t always do their bit to alleviate the stress by explaining things properly in advance. With that in mind we have produced a basic guide to the process for people who want to know how the conveyancing process works for buyers.

Stage 1- Getting started

Having clicked to confirm that you wish to instruct us, you will receive an email confirmation acknowledging that your instructions have been received.

Your instructions will reach our conveyancing department. Within 24 hours of receiving your instructions we will contact you to introduce ourselves and answer any questions that you may have.

conveyancing process

Your conveyancing file will then be opened and our introductory letter and questionnaire will be sent to you. These must be sent back to us. At this stage you may be asked to pay some money on account to cover our initial costs for searches. This starts our role in the conveyancing process.

If you are purchasing through estate agents, we contact the agents to obtain the contact details for the other parties to the conveyance and their solicitors.  We shall write to all other parties introducing ourselves and request the contract from the seller’s solicitors.

If you need to organise a mortgage, at this point you should be finalising your mortgage finance and advising your lender/financial advisor that we are acting for you.

Stage 2- Pre-exchange of contracts

We receive contract documents from the seller’s solicitors. We approve the contract and check the seller’s legal right to the property. We may at this stage raise enquiries of the seller. Any specific enquiries you have should be raised with us at this stage so that they can be clarified with the seller to make sure any small questions are ironed out as early as possible and that the conveyancing process goes as smoothly as possible, avoiding delays later down the line.

We will carry out the necessary property searches.  If applicable, we receive and check your mortgage offer.

conveyancing process

Our report on the contract to buy your property will be sent to you together with the contract for your signature. This is an important stage in the conveyancing process, because this is approaching the point when you are legally bound to complete the contract for purchase.

In readiness for exchange of contracts, we shall request from you the deposit to secure your property (usually 10% of the purchase price) and request your instructions to proceed to legal exchange.

Our final invoice will be sent to you. Our legal fees must be paid on or before completion.

Stage 3- The Exchange

At this stage, if you are obtaining mortgage finance, the funds will be requested from your lender.

Stage 4- Completion

Stage 5- Post completion

Unless the property you have purchased is exempt (for further information about stamp duty exemptions click here) , Stamp Duty is paid to the Inland Revenue.

Any deeds to the property (which if the property is mortgaged are not required by your lender) will be sent to you for safekeeping. This marks the end of the conveyancing process, although completion is the point which most purchasers and sellers are most concerned about, because that is when the property becomes occupied. Our prices start from £550 plus VAT.

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