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The house buying process in England and Wales typically takes around 8 to 12 weeks to complete. However, this timeline can vary depending on various factors such as the complexity of the transaction, the responsiveness of all parties involved, and any unforeseen issues that may arise during the process.

Buying a house is a significant financial and emotional decision, and the process can be quite involved. It is essential to understand the various stages involved to navigate through the process smoothly.

In this blog we’ve outlined the typical steps involved in the house buying process, including the important role of the conveyancer.

Steps to Buy a House

Conveyancing is the legal process of transferring ownership of a property from the seller to the buyer. It involves several essential steps:

a. Instruction: The buyer engages a conveyancer, such as Clarity, to handle the legal aspects of the purchase. We will conduct identity checks and request initial information from the buyer, such as proof of funds.

b. Property Information and Title Checks: The seller completes a property information form, and the sellers’ solicitors/conveyancers will provide Clarity with official copies of the title register and plan from the Land Registry, along with any other important information from the sellers. These documents provide crucial information about the property.

c. Local Searches: We will carry out various searches with local authorities and other relevant bodies. These searches may include checking for planning permissions, building regulations, environmental issues, drainage, and any other relevant information about the property and its surroundings.

d. Review and Enquiries: We will review all the documents received, raise any necessary enquiries with the seller’s solicitor, and seek clarification on any potential issues or discrepancies found during the process.

e. Mortgage and Survey: If you require a mortgage, you will need to finalise your mortgage application. The lender will likely require a valuation survey to assess the property’s value. You may also opt for a more detailed survey (e.g., a HomeBuyer’s Report or Building Survey) to identify any structural issues. The lender will then issue a mortgage offer to yourself and also to Clarity.

f. Contract and Mortgage Offer: Once all necessary checks are completed, and we’re satisfied with the results, we ask you to sign the contract. At this stage, the mortgage offer should also be in place, and any additional conditions satisfied.

g. Exchange of Contracts: Both parties (buyer and seller) sign identical contracts, and the contracts are exchanged over the telephone between both sides. At this point, the transaction becomes legally binding, and a deposit is paid by the buyer.

h. Completion: On the agreed-upon completion date, the balance of the purchase price is transferred to the seller’s solicitor. You can now collect the keys and move into the property.

i. Post-Completion: We will tie up any loose ends, including paying stamp duty, registering the property in the buyer’s name at the Land Registry, and ensuring any outstanding charges against the property are settled.

Conclusion:

Buying a house is a multifaceted process that involves various legal and financial considerations. The house buying conveyancing steps play a crucial role in ensuring a smooth and legally sound transfer of ownership. While the process typically takes 8 to 12 weeks, it is essential to be patient and seek professional advice to navigate any potential complexities successfully.

Remember that the house buying process can be subject to delays, so being well-prepared and proactive in providing the necessary information to us can help speed up the process.

Looking for some legal advice?

Clarity is rated Excellent on Trustpilot and regulated by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC). Our clients appreciate that we take the time to keep them updated throughout the process and make their journey as stress-free as possible. Please get in touch with our friendly team if we can help you too. We have offices in Northampton and Milton Keynes and serve the surrounding areas.