Step by Step Guide to Buying or Selling a House


Once your offer to purchase a property has been accepted there are a number of steps to follow to ensure a smooth process.

First of all hopefully you will have been in touch with a mortgage lender and ascertained that you will be able to borrow the amount of money that is required, this is referred to as a mortgage agreed in principle. Once you have agreed to purchase a property you will need to inform the lender and fill out the necessary paperwork to enable them to proceed to process your application.

At the same time it will be necessary to instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf. They will ask you to sign paperwork to confirm to act for you and may also request money to be held on account to apply for searches and cover initial costs. The solicitor will normally act for you and your lender, they will communicate directly with the other solicitors involved in your transaction and will apply for searches, check titles, guarantees or planning permissions , raise any queries and prepare contracts for exchanging of contracts.

Once your mortgage application has been processed and the necessary fees paid, the mortgage lender will instruct a surveyor to carry out a mortgage valuation. You could choose to have a more detailed survey either by the mortgage lender or an independent source, but the mortgage valuation must be carried out by the lender. Once this has been done your lender will issue a mortgage offer to you in writing and a copy will be sent to your solicitor.

Once all parties are ready and contracts are all signed your solicitor will liaise with you regarding deposit money. This is paid to your solicitor before exchange and is normally 5% or 10% of the purchase price, this has to be cleared funds for exchange so it is often a good idea to ask the solicitor in advance so that there will be no delay . They will also confirm a completion date at this time that is suitable to all parties. At the point of exchange you will also need to obtain building insurance and inform your solicitor. Once contracts are exchanged a completion date is set and this cannot be changed.

Once you have exchanged contracts you should contact the utility suppliers and arrange for the services to be transferred to your name on the completion date. On the day of completion , read the meters and give the suppliers the meter readings.

Your solicitor will arrange with your lender to obtain your mortgage funds for completion, pay stamp duty and will give you a completion statement. Once completed they will finalise the registration of the title in your name.

Please contact us on 01923 242255 or email info@friendsestateagents.co.uk if you have any queries.