Going into the real estate market as a seller is a tedious process, primarily due to its legalities. You also have to comply with local authorities and be on good terms with your buyer. Luckily, you are not in this alone since you bring your conveyancer or your solicitor with you. But what exactly does the whole process entail, and what are your responsibilities?
This article will discuss all the eight crucial steps you have to take as a house seller to initiate a successful transaction. Take this as an opportunity to get the funding you need to either purchase a better house or reinvest in other ventures. This way, you can be more financially stable and have enough, even during emergencies.
Consider your mortgage options and next living arrangements
Since you may be vacating your current house, you may find a way to sell it while buying a new one. You can also consider porting your mortgage, meaning you can get the same deal from a similar provider over your new property or remortgage by finding better offers.
If you feel comfortable with just relocating to another house you own, it may also be the best option, especially if you want to hang on to your investments. Just ensure you settle all your outstanding payments with your lender. Making these necessary arrangements is crucial since the selling process moves quickly.
Find the ideal conveyancer
You need to find a conveyancer after you consult with your mortgage lender. Your decision here is crucial since your chosen property law professional, whether a conveyancer or solicitor, will represent you during the transaction, ensure you have all the required documents ready, and make the trade. As such, you need someone who is regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC), Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Law Society of Northern Ireland, Law Society of Scotland, and Chartered Institute of Legal Executives.
During the scouting stage, you will compare conveyancing quotes and determine who can handle your situation best. It means you shouldn’t simply go for what is cheaper, so you should look at their reputation, years of experience, and communication skills. This way, you can also have a stress-free selling process and get proper advice when needed.
Ideally, you should agree on fixed-fee conveyancing, meaning the legal fee set by your conveyancer will be adjusted, depending on your property being either a freehold or leasehold. Just be clear with your payments and avoid complications as much as possible since it can strain your professional relationship if unresolved.
Look through the Mortgage Agreement in Principle (AIP) and accept an offer
You can expect your process to start once you receive different offers from multiple buyers. It means you will need your conveyancer’s assistance as they get ready to set your case, especially when you have an offer or AIP you want to accept. So you should keep in close contact with your conveyancer by providing the following information:
Your full legal name
The property’s address
The agreed-upon price
The mortgage details
Answer questionnaires from your conveyancer
As the house seller, you have some questions to answer through paperwork and supply legal documents before processing any further. This step is when you will discuss the property with its included assets.
You also have to disclose some more sensitive information, like neighbours’ complaints, proposed developments near your property, and anything you intend on leaving onsite for your buyer. For instance, if you have some furniture that you don’t intend on bringing to the new house, you can also leave it.
The point of these questionnaires is to orient your conveyancer and the buyer’s party about what they are getting out of your property, both the pros and cons. Remember to fill out these forms truthfully and to the best of your abilities, or else risk getting into legal trouble.
This step is one of the most important steps of the whole process, especially since you are the seller. Your conveyancer’s professional knowledge and experience will be put to work here, so ensure you comply and request further assistance when needed.
Contract drafting and preparations for surveying
Once the questionnaires are completed, your conveyancer will refer to them while drafting the contract, including the Land Registry documents, property information, plus the fitting and fixture forms. All these documents are put together as a contract pack from the buyer’s conveyancer and all enquiries from both parties will commerce.
Property surveying will also begin, so you need to tidy up and ensure all entrances are open to prevent suspicion from your buyer. Take note that there may be some concern raised after the survey’s completion, like hidden damage and necessary repairs. You may even have to renegotiate again through your conveyancer, so just be ready to answer any enquiries, especially about the contract.
Make necessary adjustments to the contract and agree on a completion date
Once both parties are happy with the contract, you will agree on a completion date, which is when you and your buyer agree to do the exchange for your real estate and accept their money. Don’t forget to run through the contract more than once and only sign it upon the advice of your conveyancer.
You also need to be practical at this point since you will have to contact a removal company and relocate to another home. You may even need to settle some obligations, like local taxes and utility bills, before moving. As such, you should give yourself weeks ahead to prepare.
Exchanging contracts through the phone and completion day
The conveyancers from both concerned parties will agree, sign, and send over the contracts, making the transaction legally binding. It means you shouldn’t accept other offers or withdraw, or else you can expect to get sued by the buyer. You should also move out by completion day and hand over the keys, deeds, and other necessary documents. Don’t forget to also settle any outstanding conveyancing fees.
Do other tasks on or after completion day
Many house sellers are often convinced that once the exchange of contracts is done, and the completion date is a success, they can move out happily. However, they often fail to make crucial adjustments to their new living arrangements. It can even be a nuisance to the buyer, which can affect your reputation in the real estate market. So you should remember to do the following and determine whether you should do them on or after the completion day:
Settle any consumer-related matters with your utility company.
Have your new home ready for moving in by hiring a cleaning company.
Pack all your belongings, and don’t forget any hidden assets before relocating.
Contact your place of work and let them know you are moving house.
Redirect all mail and subscriptions to your new address.
Selling a house is a huge undertaking that should be handled with care and attention. Fortunately, you now have a better understanding of the settlement process. All you have to do is find the right professionals, be detail-oriented, and keep your focus on your welfare as you make a big transition in your life. Sell your house and start comparing listings at the real estate market today!
Are you interested in fixed fee conveyancing options for your house selling transaction? We at Conveyancing Calculator can provide you with that. We can connect you instantly with different licensed conveyancers and solicitors for your convenience. Invest in our services to get the best out of your real estate venture!