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Legal Guide: Six simple steps for avoiding stress when buying or selling a property

Six simple steps for avoiding stress when buying or selling a property

POSTED 27/10/17

  1. Get your paperwork in order as early as possible
  2. Any documentation relating to safety checks, or work, such as an extension, will be needed by your conveyancer. Having this to hand will speed things up.

  3. Keep an eye on local developments
  4. If you’ve received notices about planned works in your area, such as a motorway development or a neighbour’s extension, let your conveyancer know. Unexpected surprises slow things down and the sooner your conveyancer has this information, the better.

  5. Set aside some time
  6. Allow at least an hour to fill out the initial paperwork for your conveyancer, and half a day gathering paperwork. The sooner your lawyer gets what they need the sooner they can progress.

  7. Put your team together
  8. The sooner you give contact details of your team to the relevant parties, the sooner your lawyer, mortgage broker and estate agent can start communicating and get your transaction completed.

  9. Keep your lawyer informed about everything
  10. Make sure your lawyer knows everything your estate agent knows, even if it seems minor. For example, if you’ve agreed that curtains are part of the sale price your lawyer should be informed. Unnecessary delays can be caused by seemingly minor details not being communicated.

  11. Make sure your lawyer sees your survey
  12. If you have had a survey done make sure a copy gets to your lawyer as soon as possible to avoid delays.

The legal process in five simple steps
  1. Choose a solicitor
  2. Choose an experienced solicitor, and if you’re buying and selling we would advise using the same one for both transactions – having someone with a detailed knowledge of your sale and purchase should save you time.

  3. The draft contract
  4. Your solicitor will negotiate a draft contract which outlines all the terms of the sale. At this point neither party are legally committed to the sale.

  5. Questionnaires
  6. The buyer’s lawyer will make enquires so the buyer is fully aware of what they’re purchasing. These enquiries could cover everything from property boundaries to proposed local developments to council tax rates.

  7. Exchange contracts
  8. Once all enquiries have been complete and the terms have agreed, final contracts will be written up and then “exchanged”. Buyer and seller are now legally committed to the sale.

  9. Completion
  10. This is when the property officially changes ownership. Seller will accept payment and hand over the keys, deeds transferred, and transfer of ownership lodged with the land registry.

Please note that these guides are for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice. You can contact one of our expert consultant lawyers using the form below.

Rebecca Lloyd
Rebecca Lloyd


“There are number of steps that can be taken to reduce stress when buying or selling a property, but the most important one of all is appointing a lawyer who understands the importance of communication. Knowing you can easily contact and be updated by the person handling your transaction, a lawyer who insists on being kept informed by all those directly involved in the sale or purchase, can make all the difference.”

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