To help you understand the legal process that occurs in a property transaction we have provided you with a step by step guide, as seen below:
Step by step guide
1. Chose and instruct your Solicitor - Once an offer has been agreed on a property, we recommend the first thing that you do is instruct a Solicitor to act on your behalf. The Solicitor will then send their initial forms for you to complete, together with their identification requirements.
2. Contracts, deeds & mortgages - Once you have returned the completed initial forms to your Solicitor, draft Contracts will be prepared and sent to the Buyer's Solicitors together with the Land Registry Title Deeds. If applicable, the mortgage offer should be sent to the Buyer's Solicitor at this stage.
3. Searches & enquiries - Once the Buyer's Solicitor is in receipt of the draft Contracts they will instigate the searches if they are required. The typical searches they will instruct are Water and Drainage, Environmental and Local Authority. Once these searches have been received by the Buyer's Solicitor, they will be reviewed and reported to the Buyer. The Buyer's Solicitor will then raise any necessary enquiries based upon the draft Contract pack and search results.
4. Exchange of Contracts - Once the Solicitors have dealt with the enquiries, a date for completion must be agreed. Once this date has been agreed throughout the chain, you must sign the Contract and Transfer documents. At this stage, the Buyer's Solicitor will also request the deposit monies and mortgage funds, if applicable. The Solicitors will then arrange to complete what is called 'exchange of Contracts'. From this point, both Seller and Buyer are legally obligated to sell/buy the property.
5. Completion - On completion day, the Buyer's Solicitor will transfer all outstanding monies to your Solicitor. Once these have been received, the Buyer can arrange to collect the keys from the Estate Agent.
On The Day of Completion
On the day of legal completion, your solicitor will:
• Arrange legal paperwork
• Discharge your mortgage and/or draw-down funds for your new mortgage
• Pay your fees as per the Terms of Agency Agreement you have signed
• Arrange the legal documentation to be signed for the transfer of the property at H M Land Registry and register your ownership
• Arrange your Stamp Duty payment, payable to the Inland Revenue
Payment of fees
Prior to legal completion, your solicitor will require any monies due to them to be cleared funds in time for legal completion. They will deduct their fees and disbursement costs and stamp duty from the balance at legal completion. Finally, you will liaise with your agent for the release of the keys to the property.