How To Avoid Common Conveyancing Hold-Ups
If you are buying or selling property then hopefully your transaction will go without a hitch and you will be in your new home before you know it. That is certainly the plan anyway! However, conveyancing is a sometimes unpredictable process and there are a few things you can prepare for, just in case.
Here is our list of the most common hold-ups that homebuyers and sellers encounter during the conveyancing process and how to avoid them where possible.
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What Can Hold-Up Conveyancing?
- Failing To Instruct A Solicitor ASAP
Conveyancing solicitors carry out the legal process involved in the property transfer. When you buy or sell a property you should instruct a conveyancing solicitor as soon as an offer has been accepted. By doing this, you can get the ball rolling as soon as possible.
Conveyancing often takes time as there is complicated paperwork to be completed and reliance on outside parties to respond quickly. We will be sending out for searches, dealing with the paperwork between all parties, liaising with your buyer/seller’s solicitor and your mortgage lender, as well as many other important tasks. So make sure you compare solicitors fees and conveyance quotes ASAP
Gazumping is where a seller accepts a higher offer after accepting yours and is a nightmare for the people who miss out. However, whilst it is frustrating, until contracts are exchanged, the property transaction is not legally binding which means the seller is allowed to do this. What can you do? You can match the new buyer’s offer, attempt to negotiate a price somewhere in between, or drop out of the sale altogether. Depending on how far down the conveyancing process you are, the seller may be willing to accept your slightly lower offer as you may be able to complete faster as the conveyancing process is already under way.
- Conflict Between Parties
When offers have been accepted, both parties’ conveyancing solicitors start the legal process by exchanging a series of letters (missives) to agree terms. These terms include the price, date of entry, and fixtures and fittings amongst many other things. Occasionally, one or more of the conditions will not be agreed on. If this happens, we will negotiate on your behalf and discuss what you are prepared to compromise on .
- Paperwork Issues
Incomplete paperwork is a common obstacle in the conveyancing process. When completing a property transaction, especially one in which a mortgage is involved, there are many documents to be signed by both buyers and sellers, some of which need to be witnessed. Organising this can sometimes cause delays. Try to ensure that you don’t hold up the processby being available to sign contracts, and return documents as quickly as possible.
- Mortgage Valuations And Surveys
Mortgage valuations don’t take long to complete (usually around 15-20 mins) and are a necessity. Unfortunately, it can take a while for your lender to arrange one. Other, more in-depth surveys that you might need or choose to have can also hold up the process. When a valuation and survey have been carried out, there is also the time it takes to write up their findings to take into consideration. To avoid delays, start looking into surveys as soon as an offer is accepted.
- Problems Arising With The Property
If your survey exposes a problem with the property, this is likely to cause delays to the conveyancing process. The extent of the problem must be fully examined, and decisions will have to be made about any work that needs to be carried out, specifically who is going to organise it and pay. Your solicitor will advise you on the results and its implications. It might be necessary to renegotiate the price with the other party.
- Broken Chains
Many delays in the conveyancing process result from the actions of other people. The longer the chain is, the more complex everything becomes. Whilst this is something you cannot control, you should remain aware. We will monitor the chain closely and inform you straight away if a problem occurs as breakdown in chains can be costly and upsetting.
- Mortgage Offer Expiring
Mortgage offers will normally last between three and six months. If the Conveyancing Process goes smoothly, this should be plenty of time, but if there are significant delays, you may have to apply for a new mortgage offer.
There may be circumstances when this is unavoidable, due to delays caused elsewhere in the system. Instructing a Conveyancing Expert with plenty of experience and a sound track record will make this less likely to happen.