Written by Ian Taylor, Associate Solicitor at Spire Solicitors LLP.
If you’re in the process of moving home or are looking to put your property on the market, you may be wondering how the Covid pandemic will affect your property transaction.
Following the announcement of the stamp duty “holiday” back in July, the UK has seen a great boost to the property market. With the deadline of the 31st March 2021, it is expected conveyancing services will continue to be in high demand well into the new year. If you are a First Time Buyer, you will still be exempt from paying any SDLT up to £300,000 after the 31st March 2021, which gives you more time to find the perfect home.
To help keep your property transaction moving, you may want to consider the following:
- Organise paperwork – the paperwork at the outset of any house sale or purchase is significant but getting it right can help prevent hold-ups further down the line.
If you are selling your property, your conveyancer will provide you with a Property Information Form and Fixtures & Fittings List to complete. There is a lot of detail requested here but you will be asked to provide, where relevant:
- Planning permission for any work carried out in, say, the last 10 years
- Building Regulations completion certificates for alterations
- Guarantee (warranty) certificates for roofing work or equipment
- Up to date boiler service checks
- FENSA certificates for new windows
If you do not have these documents, copies are usually obtainable from the relevant authorities for a small fee. If you get your paperwork in order right at the start, even before you’ve found a buyer, this will help in the long run.
- Title Deeds – whilst most properties are now registered electronically at Land Registry, it is advisable to keep any old deeds, if you have them, as they may contain information that does not appear in the Land Registry records, for example any rights, covenants or plans. In some cases, the title may not be registered and, if this is the case, it is vital you know where your deeds are.
- Finances – if you are buying a property, you will need to arrange your mortgage, deposit or other finance in good time. Your conveyancer will request some money on account for search fees with the remaining amounts due at the point of exchange and completion.
Whilst your conveyancer will be trying to keep your property transaction moving as quickly as possible, it is likely there could be delays along the way, especially if anyone involved in the process needs to self-isolate. Things may naturally take a little longer than usual, but all will be trying to do their best for you.
Here at Spire Solicitors LLP, we are managing our new instructions in order to maintain the high level of service to our clients. If you would like any more information or need a quote for buying or selling a property please contact Spire Solicitors LLP on 01603 677077.