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A quick guide for first time buyers

Buying a home is stressful, especially for first-time buyers, so it's wise to do some research to ensure you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Conveyancing is the term that refers to the legal process of transferring one person's property (the seller), to another (the buyer).

What does the process involve?

Put simply; this is what conveyancing looks like from start to finish:

  • Get your mortgage sorted out before you start looking, so you know what your budget is.
  • Find the property you want.
  • Put in an offer i.e. tell the seller what you're willing to pay for the property. This is also the time to raise any conditions you have.
  • The offer's accepted. At this point, you'll need a survey to check the property's condition, and your solicitor will review any legal issues.
  • The checks will include a wide range of examinations, including the structural integrity of the property, whether there’s any signs of subsidence, damp or damage, and whether there are any existing plans for the immediate area that may impact the property.
    Your solicitor will also check with the local authority, utilities and environmental department to find out if there are common drains that serve multiple properties, there is any history of land contamination, or if you are responsible for any shared public access points. They’ll also look at the deeds and boundaries to see if there are any disputes with neighbouring properties. If everything comes back okay, you can move onto the next level – buying your home.
  • Exchange. This is when you pay your deposit, which means you can't back out of the deal without losing a lot of money.
  • Completion: Now you hand over the rest of the money for the house in exchange for both the keys and the deeds. At this point, the property is legally yours.

You should note that nobody is legally bound to complete the transaction until contracts are exchanged.

Top Tip: As part of the process, ask for a list of fixtures and fittings the seller is willing to include within the cost of the property. Get this in writing. That way you'll manage your expectations and won't get a nasty surprise upon arrival.

If you would like to get in touch or have an enquiry regarding buying your first property just email or call 01795 436941 .

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