So what are the key stages to buying a home?
The process of buying a home can take anything from six weeks onwards. Throughout this period there are lots of different milestones in the when buying a home and if you are part of a chain, or have a mortgage, this will increase the timeline significantly.
Stage 1 (Week 1)
Once you have found a property that suits your requirements, try and stay calm. When making an offer you should always consider the fixtures and fittings that you wish to purchase along with the property. Conditions of your purchase must be outlined at this stage prior to having your offer accepted. Once your offer has been accepted by the seller, the process then begins.
If you are getting a mortgage, you need to speak to your broker or lender and ask them to sort out your mortgage application. You will then need to give them paperwork that clearly shows your income and any other outgoings you have. If you are a cash buyer, you will need to provide evidence of the money required in your accounts.
Stage 2 (Week 2)
At this stage you will need to instruct a conveyancing solicitor to complete all the legal work on the property for you. This is an important decision as choosing a proactive solicitor who communicates well with all parties during the purchase process is essential. VitalSpace can recommend respected local solicitors to help with your purchase if required. The solicitor will submit a number of searches to the local council in order to find out whether there are any planning problems or local issues that could affect the value of the property.
Meanwhile your lender should arrange for a survey to be carried out on the property just to value the property. If you are a cash purchaser it is always recommended that you instruct an independent survey or inspection yourself. The outcome of the survey determines the next step. VitalSpace can recommend surveyors who can provide full reports.
Stage 3 (Weeks 4 – 6)
If there are no problems with the searches or the survey, then the next step would be to sign and exchange the contracts with the seller. At this point you will need to pay a 10% deposit on the house to show you are committed to the sale, if you pull out after this you won’t get the deposit back.
With some government schemes such as Help to Buy, you may only need to pay a 5% deposit rather than the typical 10%.
Stage 4 (Week 6 +)
The final stages of the purchase are called exchange and completion. At this stage both you and your solicitor must be happy with the outcome of the survey and be satisfied with all replies to enquires raised. The formal mortgage must be granted so that funds can be drawn to your solicitors bank account when requested. Your solicitor will agree a completion date with all parties and then exchange contracts based on the above. The timing of this stage can depend on a number of things, such as whether you have notice to give on a rental property, are waiting for the person buying your current home to be ready, or waiting for the occupiers to move out of your new home.
Once you are in, there are a number of things you need to do, including sorting out your home insurance, unpacking boxes, changing the locks and most importantly, settling in to your lovely new home.
Buying a home can often be a long and complicated process, so make sure you complete each stage of the timeline one step at a time and have all your finances in place. Remember, the VitalSpace team are always happy to help along the way.
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