To buy the new property, you’ll need to provide proof of funds and/or the mortgage offer, together with two forms of identification to show proof of identity and your current address.
To sell your current property, you’ll need the identification documents again, together with property title deeds (though these tend to be digital), TA10 fittings and contents form, TA6 property information form, any additional documents referenced in the property information form (such as building regulations, boiler service records and guarantees for new appliances), warranties (if the house is less than 10 years old) and an energy performance certificate (EPC). If the property is leasehold you’ll also need the Management Information Pack and a copy of the lease.
Many of these forms will be provided for you to fill in, and remember to keep track of insurance and survey documents too.
The length of the process varies between each case. The average time can be around six to eight weeks to completion, however this depends on multiple factors including the complexity of the case and the number of transactions in the property chain. The shorter the chain, the quicker the transaction can be, but there’s no guarantee.
Searches are a key part of the conveyancing process, and typically take two to three weeks to complete (though local authority searches can take longer depending on the area). However, bear in mind that the results of a search may prompt your conveyancer to make additional enquiries, which could add to the overall time taken.
To avoid the risk and cost of owning two houses at once, people usually elect to buy and sell simultaneously. A number of linked transactions therefore arise, each dependent on the other, and exchange of contracts must take place simultaneously in all transactions; this is known as the chain, and means that the speed of progress is dictated by the slowest link in that chain.
Once contracts are exchanged a legally binding agreement arises and neither party can back out. At this point, the new property is yours. Until that point either party may withdraw from the transaction.
This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.