Property FAQs

How long will it take?

This is a very difficult question to answer, as every transaction is different. It will depend on whether you are just buying or selling, doing both at the same time. The average sale will take approximately 10-12 weeks, however many proceed quicker, and occasionally some take longer. There are a number of circumstances that may affect a transaction, however we can assure you that we aim to deal with matters as quickly and as smoothly as possible, to make the transaction as stress-free for you as possible.

SELLING

How can solicitors help me to sell my house?

We will ensure that the majority of the stress is taken away from you. We have the experience, knowledge and tools that enables us to deal with each part of the transaction, ensuring that any unforeseen problems or difficulties are dealt with in a time-efficient manner. We maintain regular contact with you and the agents which ensures the positive progression of your transaction.

If I have a mortgage, will I need to contact my lender before selling?

No, but we do require you to provide us with your mortgage account details. We will then contact your lender for you and will request that they forward to us any documents which they might hold to your property. We will also ask them to let us have a redemption statement, and upon completion we will redeem your mortgage for you from the proceeds of sale.

What does exchange mean?

Exchange of Contracts is when the agreement between you and your buyer becomes legally binding. On or before the day of exchange, a completion date will be agreed between the parties, this will be inserted into the contract and both parties are bound to complete on this date. Failure to complete on the agreed date means that you could face financial penalties.

What does completion mean?

Completion is the day the ownership of the property changes hands. The buyer pays the balance of the purchase monies, and you must move out of the property and pass your keys to the buyer or the estate agents. You will usually need to vacate the property by midday on the day of completion. We advise you not to hand over any keys, until we have confirmed safe receipt of completion monies.

What do I need to do between exchange and completion?

Exchange and completion can happen at the same time, usually, however, there is a week or so between exchange and completion. In this time there are a number of things that you will need to do:

  • Book your removals
  • Inform your utility suppliers and insurance providers of the completion date
  • If you want the net proceeds of sale by bank transfer, make sure you give us your bank account details
  • If you have not already done so, make sure we have a mobile telephone number for you so that we can call you to let you know completion has taken place

I have lost my guarantees and warranties, what do I do?

Do not panic, but let us know as soon as possible what documents have been lost. In most cases duplicates can be obtained, but where this is not possible, alternative insurance can be arranged.

BUYING

How can a solicitor help me buy a house?

Click here for our Top Tips for Home Buyers.

How long is it likely to take?

This is a very difficult question to answer, as every transaction is different. On average, a purchase will take around 10-12 weeks, however many proceed quicker, and occasionally some take longer. The only assurance we can give you is that we will do everything within our power to ensure your purchase proceeds as quickly and as smoothly as possible.

What is a Land Registry fee, and how much is it?

Once you have completed your purchase, we will send an application for registration to the Land Registry. The Land Registry will then update the register and you will become the registered proprietor of the property. Once the Land Registry has completed our application, they will provide us with up to date office copies showing you as the owner of the property and detailing any charges secured against the property. If the property that you are registering is unregistered land then the fee payable to the Land Registry will be different, as this involves providing them with all deeds and documents, which prove your ownership.

Do I need a survey to be conducted?

It is not mandatory to have a survey, but we would strongly recommend that you do. When you are buying a property, the seller has no legal responsibility to point out any defects to you, and it is therefore down to you to ensure that you are confident as to the condition of the property.

If you are getting a mortgage, you will pay your lender to arrange a mortgage valuation survey, however this is a very basic survey solely for the benefit of the lender to ensure that the property is worth what you are paying for it. The mortgage valuation does not tell you anything about the physical condition of the property or any potential problems that might exist.

What are searches and why do I need them?

Although searches are not mandatory (for cash purchases), we strongly recommend that you instruct us to undertake them on your behalf. The usual cost of searches; if you are purchasing a property in King’s Lynn is around £200.00. The usual searches include; local, environmental, drainage and flood search.

What are disbursements?

These are payments which we pay out to third parties on your behalf and will include: stamp duty, land registry fee and search fees. There are also a number of pre-completion and post-completion searches that we will need to carry out at the Land Registry on your behalf, this is all necessary to protect you as the purchaser, and a requirement of your lender.

What does ‘no completion, no fee’ mean?

We are pleased to offer this agreement which involves you providing a premium should your transaction not proceed to completion. Please contact us and we would be happy to provide you with more information in this respect.

What does exchange mean?

Exchange of Contracts is when the agreement between you and the seller becomes legally binding. On or before the day of exchange, a completion date will be agreed between the parties, this will be inserted into the contract and both parties are bound to complete on this date. Failure to complete on the agreed date means that the party could face financial penalties. On the day of exchange we will inform your lender, and request mortgage monies in readiness for the agreed completion date. We will also advise you to put your insurance ‘on risk’ pending the agreed completion date. It will also be necessary to ensure that you send us the balance of completion monies, allowing sufficient time to ensure that we are in cleared funds.

What do I need to do between exchange and completion?

Exchange and completion can happen at the same time, usually, however, there is a week or so between exchange and completion. In this time there are a number of things that you will need to do:

  • Book your removals
  • Inform your utility suppliers and insurance providers of the completion date
  • Make sure any moneys required to complete the purchase are paid to us by cleared funds in good time for the completion date
  • If you have not already done so, make sure we have a mobile telephone number for you so that we can call you to let you know completion has taken place

What is completion?

Completion is the day the legal ownership of the property becomes yours and once all the monies have changed hands, and the seller’s solicitors have confirmed safe receipt, they will release the keys with the agents, and they will be available for you to collect.