There's no better feeling than selling your home. It's the perfect opportunity to gain more money while turning a new chapter in your life. Selling your property also lets you downsize your living situation, especially if you want to save more on your expenses or find a better home that suits your needs.
However, like other law-abiding citizens, you must find legal ways to sell your property to avoid legal trouble, such as considering conveyancing.
This expert process helps you close deals quicker while ensuring you comply with the correct legal procedure.
If you want to sell your property immediately, this article is your comprehensive guide to understanding conveyancing.
What Is Conveyancing?
Conveyancing is the area of law that transfers property ownership from the seller to the buyer.
Who Can Do the Conveyancing?
While you can do the conveyancing yourself, it's time-consuming and complex, and you would want to avoid stumbling into expensive mistakes. For this reason, whether you're buying or selling a property, it's always best to reach out to a solicitor or conveyancer to help conduct the conveyancing process.
These licensed professionals can help you carry out the conveyancing work quickly and efficiently. We recommend choosing a 'no move, no fee' conveyancer over someone who charges by the hour. It's also best to avoid online, hybrid, or corporate estate agencies who recommend conveyancing factories and services.
What Is the Average Cost for Conveyancing?
The average conveyancing fee for a standard sale should cost around £600-£1,000.
How Long Does the Conveyancing Process Last for Sellers?
The conveyancing process typically lasts for 12 to 16 weeks.
When Should I Call a Conveyancing Solicitor?
If you're a seller, the first thing you should do is to instruct your conveyancing solicitor after accepting an offer. You must provide them with your details and information about the property for sale so they can effectively begin the conveyancing process. That way, you can reduce all delays down the line.
If you've already reached out to a solicitor or conveyancer, you must contact your property agent, so they can keep them posted.
What to Do Before Answering Questionnaires?
Before your conveyancer provides the questionnaires, it's always best to prepare the essential documents for selling your house.
What Questionnaires Should Sellers Answer?
Before you can exchange contracts with your buyers, your next step is to complete several detailed questionnaires about the property and what you'll include in the sale. Your solicitor or conveyancer will provide you with these essential documents.
Your solicitor may ask you to complete the following forms:
The TA6 form is a general questionnaire. It includes crucial information, such as contact details, building works, council tax, utilities, sewerage, and significant proposed developments (motorways or railways). This form also includes details on boundaries, disputes, and complaints (noisy neighbour complaints or boundary disputes).
However, if you don't own the freehold, you must provide details on the leasehold (TA7) or the commonhold (TA9). The TA10 form should include details on what fittings and fixtures you want to add to the property.
The TA13 is a more technical document that includes finalisation details and ensures that the house has no mortgage and liability claims.
Important Tip to Remember When Answering the Questionnaires
As the seller, you must accomplish these forms honestly. Otherwise, the buyer could sue you for compensation. If they discover you're not being honest before exchanging the contracts, they may feel nervous about purchasing the property, which can jeopardise your sale.
How to Complete the Standard Property Information Forms
Once your conveyancer sends you the questionnaires, complete the forms, including the Property Information (TA6) and Fitting and Contents form (TA10). That way, you can avoid unnecessary hold-ups during the selling process.
On the other hand, if you'll be selling a leasehold property, you must accomplish the Leasehold Information Form (TA7) and provide a copy of the lease.
Consult your conveyancer if you need help deciding what you want to leave on the property. They'll generally ask you to leave the section blank or write 'for negotiation' or 'TBC.'
Next, you or your conveyancer must obtain the Management Information Pack from the managing agent or freeholder. Since it takes several weeks to arrive, we highly encourage you to request it immediately.
How to Draft the Contract and Negotiations
After accomplishing the questionnaires, your conveyancer will use the gathered information to draft a contact. They'll later send the contract to the buyer for approval.
Your legal representative will negotiate with the buyer over the draft contract, including agreeing on the completion date, which usually takes seven to 28 days after exchanging contracts. They'll also discuss what fixtures and fittings to include in the sale prices and how much the buyer will pay for other features.
What to Do Before Exchanging Contracts?
Before exchanging contracts with the buyer, you must always pay off your mortgage by asking for a redemption figure from your mortgage agency.
However, if your property has a mortgage, you must tell your broker or lender that you'll be selling your property. It's also crucial to determine how much outstanding loan you have and if you need to pay an early redemption penalty.
You'll pay off your outstanding mortgage balance once you complete the sale unless you can and want to bring your current mortgage to your next property.
What Happens When You Exchange Contracts with the Buyer?
Exchanging contracts means setting a date and time for the seller and buyer. Both parties will ensure the agreements are identical before sending them to one another in the post.
However, if you or the buyers are in a chain, the legal representatives will still follow the same procedure but will only release it if everyone agrees to go ahead. Otherwise, it could delay the selling process.
After exchanging contracts, you can now legally sell the property. If the buyer doesn't buy your property, you may keep their deposit and take legal action. On the other hand, you can face legal issues if you back out. It's also worth remembering that exchanging contracts means rejecting other offers on your property.
What Happens between Exchange and Completion?
After exchanging contracts, you should receive the buyer's deposit, which comprises 10% of the property price. While you don't need to move out until completion, relocating a few days prior is best to reduce stress.
This opportunity is also the best time to get removals quotes and organise a removals company. Moreover, you must inspect the property to ensure everything on the fixtures and fittings inventory is still inside.
What to Do on and after Completion Day?
You'll provide the buyer with the keys to the property on completion day. You or your legal representative will also receive the sale price's outstanding balance, give the legal documents, and pay the mortgage with the sale's proceeds. After completion day, you must pay your solicitor and the property agent.
While selling your property is an excellent way to gain extra profit, you must be an ethical seller to avoid legal trouble. Consulting a conveyancing solicitor can help you follow the legal process while helping you sell your property faster.
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