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The Conveyancing Process For Buyers: Steps Two & Three

May 13, 2011

Exchange of Contracts And After:

At Gordon &  Rumsby we aim to give buyers as much information as we can about the home buying process, but if you cannot find what you are looking for in our blogs, please feel free to contact us on the Contact Page of our website.  Don’t forget to check our Property List regularly too!

Step Two: Exchange of Contract.

This can only happen when both parties to the transaction are satisfied with the terms of the contract and the buyer is satisfied with the searches, the condition of the property, and has received a formal mortgage offer if applicable.

At this stage the buyer and vendor each sign their own copy of the contract and send it to each other via their solicitors. Hence the term ‘Exchange of Contracts’.

It is usual at this point for the buyer to pay a 10% deposit to the vendor’s solicitor.

The contract is now legally binding and neither party can pull out of the transaction without penalty.

Step Three: Between Exchange of Contracts & Completion.

After the contracts have been signed there is a period of time in which the solicitor must make sure everything is in place before the transaction can be completed. The buyer’s solicitor will:

  • Check the mortgage documents are correct.
  • Make sure the buyer has all the necessary funds ready for the purchase and any costs.
  • Set up the transfer of funds to the vendor.
  • Prepare the legal documents to transfer ownership.
  • Do a final Land Registry check. The Land Registry registers title to land in England and Wales, and records deals made in relation to registered land, such as sales and mortgages. This enables it to guarantee the title. It is also a resource for information such as flood risk; registered ownership; lender; price paid; detailed map of registered land.
  • Check that all contractual terms have been met. For example, that all the fixtures and fittings have been left in the property and that any agreed repairs have been done.

The conveyancing process is now ready for Step Four: Completion.

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