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The Residential Conveyancing Process

Step 1: Instructing us

The first stage of the conveyancing process is to instruct a solicitor and obtain a detailed quote. With Smith & George Solicitors we give you an instant conveyancing quote, which includes all the legal fees and disbursements (third party costs).

We will send you your client care/welcome pack, which contains some documents you need to complete and send back to us. You can send documents either by post or by emailing them to the fee earner dealing with your file. Once we have received your signed instruction forms we will then proceed to opening your file and confirming our instructions to all parties.

Step 2: Contracts, Searches & Enquiries

The next step varies depending on whether you are purchasing or selling.

On a Sale:

On a sale we draft the contract, obtain title deeds and send all relevant documents to the buyer’s solicitors.

We will also provide replies to enquiries once received from the buyer’s solicitors.

On a Purchase:

On a purchase, once we have received the contract package from the seller’s solicitors we will submit searches and raise enquiries with the seller’s solicitors regarding the title and search results.

If you are buying with a mortgage, we will also check your mortgage offer and ensure we can comply with all your lender’s requirements.

Once we have received all the search results, replies to enquiries and the lender’s requirements are satisfied (if buying with a mortgage) we will then prepare a property report to you providing you with all the legal documents related to the property.

Step 3: Reporting to you

This next stage is only relevant if you are a buying a property. It involves you reading and going through our property report to see if you are satisfied with the legal position of the property. We often sit down with clients in a face to face meeting to go through all matters affecting the property with them to ensure they have a clear understanding of the property and any risks, if any.

As a buyer you will then need to decide if you wish to continue with your purchase, sign the contracts in readiness for an exchange, and forward to us the 10%deposit.

Step 4: Exchange of Contracts

This stage is a big step in the conveyancing process and one many sellers and buyers look forward too.

The exchange of contracts means there’s a legally binding commitment between seller to sell the property and buyer to buy the property at the agreed purchase price. The completion date is also set and once contracts are exchanged there are serious legal consequences if completion does not take place on the set completion date.

Your solicitor will let you know when the contracts are agreed between all parties and everything is ready to go ahead.

Step 5: Arranging completion

The completion date depends on what was agreed before exchange. This can vary from weeks, months or the same day.

As a buyer, you will pay the balance of money that is required to complete the purchase of the house to your solicitors before the completion date.

As a seller you need to sign the transfer deed and send the original to your solicitors before the completion date.

Step 6: Completion

For completion to take place on the completion date the buyer’s solicitors must have the balance of the purchase price and the seller’s solicitors must have the signed transfer.

The buyer’s solicitors will then transfer the balance of the purchase price to the seller’s solicitors. Your solicitors will confirm when the money has changed hands and the property has legally passed from the seller to the buyer and the keys can then be release to the buyer.

Step 7: Post completion

The next step varies depending on whether you are purchasing or selling.

On a purchase, we will pay stamp duty if required and register your ownership with the Land Registry.

On a sale we will ensure that any mortgages have been repaid and discharged and that the balance of any funds is paid to you immediately.