Farrell Heyworth Estate Agents help you find your next home, sell your current home or rent out your property. We are a one stop shop because we specialise in Residential Sales, Lettings, Auctions, EPCs, Mortgage Services, Conveyancing and Surveys and Valuations. FH are one of the largest independent estate agency groups, with over 600 Home Sale Network offices and 20 Farrell Heyworth offices in the North West.
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Preparing yourself for a Conveyancing transaction can often seem like a daunting task when you are looking to sell a property. So we asked Hayley Carter-Steele from Birchall Blackburn Law, one of our recommended panel solicitors, for her top tips.

Q. What are the things home movers should do before they speak to a solicitor or conveyancer?

"It's a really good idea to get organised. Being prepared beforehand can save a lot of stress - it's about being able to find everything you need so that you can get it to your solicitor quickly and easily. Having your documents ready to give to your solicitor at the start of the Conveyancing process can often make for a quicker transaction."

Q. So, what documents will you need?

"Although all of the following documents are as important as each other, it might be worth making sure that you have some of them before others, as they can take more time to get hold of if you don’t have them to hand:

Identification Documents

Your solicitor wont be able to undertake any work until your ID has been checked, so have your identification documents ready. You will need either a Passport or Driving Licence, along with a recent Utility Bill or Bank Statement (which is no more than 3 months old).

Documents, Certificates & Guarantees of Work

If there has been any work carried out to your property, you should keep all documents, certificates and/ or guarantees of the work. Some examples of these are:
  • Planning permissions/ building regulations approvals/ completion certificates/ consents for extensions and alteration works;
  • FENSA certificates for replacement windows/ doors;
  • Building regulation compliance certificates for installations of new boilers/ fires;
  • Electrical safety certificates for electrical works;
  • Cavity wall insulation guarantees;
  • Any indemnity insurance policies which may have been obtained by a previous solicitor when you purchased the property, as well as any re-mortgages;
  • Boiler service reports
If any of these have not been kept or have been lost, you will need to start looking for duplicates from your local authority – or FENSA should you need certificates for replacement doors or windows. This can take time and there is a chance that it could impose a cost implication for you as the seller.

Title Deeds

Title deeds are paper documents showing the chain of ownership for land and property. They can include conveyances, mortgages and leases. Title deeds relate to unregistered land – for registered land, there may be pre-registration deeds that could be required before sale.
Title deeds may be held by a previous solicitor, so it may require time to arrange for collection or delivery of them.

Mortgage Account Details

You should have your mortgage account details to hand ready to pass to your chosen solicitor to enable them to request the release of any title deeds for the property, and to obtain a redemption statement, for your approval or otherwise.

Account Numbers

You should prepare all of your account numbers to have at hand to be able to notify any of your utility service providers on the day of completion."

Q. And how long should the Conveyancing process take?

"Even if you are super organised and get off to a flying start, there are many other things that can influence the length of the Conveyancing process. We usually estimate that it can take between 6 – 8 weeks for a typical freehold property from the start of the transaction process, when both a retainer and your identification has been accepted by your chosen solicitor. 
Even if you are ready to move out as soon as possible, the length of time will depend on and could be increased by a number of factors, such as:
  • If there are any issues revealed by searches or title investigations that are unexpected and require further investigation;
  • Whether you are in a chain and if so, how many parties are part of the chain;
  • Whether there is somebody in the chain who does not want (or is unable) to complete as quickly;
  • Whether there are any issues with the transactions further down the chain
Depending on any of the above, the transaction could take a shorter or longer time than our estimate."
Hayley Carter-Steele is a Licensed Conveyancer at Birchall Blackburn Law. Birchall Blackburn Law are one of our conveyancing panel members, with many years experience of helping people buy and sell property. The company was named as a Company to Inspire Britain by the London Stock Exchange in 2015, and won the 2015 North West Law Firm of the Year Award, and were recently Highly Commended at The Modern Law Awards. 

Find more expert legal advice here in our guide to buying and selling probate property.


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