Buying your home

The following conveyancing guide has been produced to help you understand the conveyancing process from a buyer’s point of view and ensure your purchase is as successful and stress-free as possible.

I have had my offer accepted and instructed Wayman & Long – now what happens?

The estate agent will need to post a memorandum of sale to us and the seller or their solicitor. This document contains everyone’s contact details and is needed before anything can truly happen.

At this time we will send you our client care letter confirming your instructions, the agreed purchase price and details of costs involved. Within the client care letter will be a request for search fees and for you to provide your ID (photo driving licence, passport and a utility bill (no more than three months old).

Contract of sale, searches and enquiries

We will then await for the seller to send us a copy of their draft sale contract.  If the contract is acceptable we will then carry out a variety of standard searches on the property on your behalf (for example drainage, charges). We will also send out standard enquiries to the seller or their solicitor, together with any questions you may have or which arise out of the search results.

The seller or their solicitor on their behalf will answer the enquiries we make, which you / we may agree or which may prompt further answers from us.  It is important to note that, in order to protect your interests these enquiries are as rigorous as possible and therefore this stage of the process may take some time.

Formalising your mortgage (as applicable)

Once all the enquiries are answered to your / our satisfaction you will need to formalise any mortgage offer and sign a mortgage deed which we will prepare for you with your mortgage lender. It is important to note that we cannot provide any financial advice as to which mortgage lenders or deals may be suited to your needs and would encourage you to seek independent financial advice. This may also be a good time for you to consider writing a will as your property is likely to be your biggest lifetime asset.  If this is something that you are interested in then please do let us know as we are able to provide competitive rates for will writing as part of your property transaction.

Once funding of your purchase is fully in place we will ask you to sign the draft sales contract and provide us with the deposit funds before we can exchange contracts on your behalf. It is standard for you to pay 10% of the agreed purchase price.

Exchange of contracts

At this point contracts will be exchanged which formally binds you to purchase the property and the seller to sell it to you on the terms agreed in the sales contract and there is therefore no backing out. A formal completion date for the purchase will be set and insurance must be purchased for the property.

After the exchange of contracts

During the time between exchange of contracts and completion you / your mortgage lender will be asked to provide us with the outstanding funds for your purchase once they have been provided with a completion statement which includes money already paid out, stamp duty figures, and the balance still to be paid to complete the purchase.

Also at this stage, as you have a date set for completion you will need to arrange removals, register for council tax, arrange utility suppliers etc.    

On the morning of completion we will then send the outstanding purchase funds to your seller or their solicitor. Once these have been received the seller’s solicitor will then confirm that the keys can be released. Usually, this happens around lunchtime or early afternoon.

Following completion, and whilst you are settling into your new home, we will submit the stamp duty land tax return form and pay any stamp duty from the monies remaining on your account. We will also register you as the owners of the property with the Land Registry and send you confirmation once this is completed. However, please note this can take several weeks to complete.