Are you buying or selling a property? Catie Spink, GCILEx, of the Residential Property team at Thompson Smith and Puxon (TSP) Solicitors in Clacton and Colchester, discusses the preparations you can make that may help to speed up your move.
An average conveyancing transaction takes 8 to 12 weeks from start to finish, once a complete chain of transactions is achieved, but many clients ask me how they can speed the process up. What most people don’t realise is that, although a chain of transactions can only move as fast as the slowest link in that chain, you do not need to wait until you find a buyer for your property to start the conveyancing process and to make sure you are not the link slowing progress down. If you are selling your property, it will help speed up the process if you start filling out the standard forms and collating all relevant supporting documents in respect of your property as soon as it is placed on the market. Having these documents completed in advance means that when you accept an offer on your property, your solicitor is able to send out the contract pack to the purchaser’s solicitor more or less immediately. It also means that you can take your time to complete the documents whilst the property is on the market and get all the necessary documentation together at your leisure.
One of the forms you will need to complete is the Property Information Form – a standard form published by the Law Society (www.lawsociety.org.uk) which all sellers are required to fill out when selling their property. As soon as you put your property on the market, ask your solicitor for a copy of the Property Information Form which will assist you in identifying the relevant supporting documents you need to locate.
As well as the Property Information Form, you will need to complete a Fittings & Contents Form. Again, this is a standard form published by the Law Society on which you confirm which of the fittings and contents are included in the sale. In the case of leasehold property, a further form, the Leasehold Information Form will also need to be completed.
As the seller of the property, you have a duty to disclose all relevant documents to a potential buyer. These would usually include any notices or correspondence that affect your property, Planning Permissions, Building Regulations approvals and Completion Certificates, FENSA Certificates and guarantees, Electrical Safety Certificates, Corgi or Gas Safe Certificates, Tree Preservation Orders, Guarantees etc. If you are unsure about any documents you might have and whether they may be required by your buyer, you should discuss them with your solicitor.
Your conveyancing transaction can take time but you can speed it up by starting the process early, completing the forms mentioned above and collating all documentation relevant to the property as soon as you put it on the market.