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Stages of a House Sale

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1. Preparation

 

Good preparation can go a long way to ensuring a smooth transaction. We strongly recommend using us for both the Estate Agency and Conveyancing of your property as our preparation starts before the marketing commences.

 

Our Estate Agency department will send you a detailed questionnaire as part of the marketing process and as a requirement of your obligation to provide a Home Report. Our experienced staff will use this to identify any issues that can be dealt with now, rather than once an offer is received, helping your sale go more smoothly.  If you have any Building Warrants, plans or Completion Certificates for work carried out please also hand these in to our office. Where documentation for alterations or extensions is incomplete it is sometimes necessary to arrange for the Building Control Department of the Local Authority or an architect to inspect the property to issue a Letter of Comfort, and it is far better for you to deal with such issues at an early stage. We have developed good connections with other professionals who can help.

2. Missives

 

Once an acceptable offer is received this will form the basis of the sale contract, and we will explain all of the conditions to you. There are a number of conditions which require detailed instructions. Most of these will have been discussed when obtaining your agreement to the offer in principle, such as the price, date of entry, items included, and any time limit contained in the offer.

 

Once we have your instructions we issue a formal acceptance letter on your behalf which usually contains additional conditions. It can take several letters between the respective solicitors before a sale becomes legally binding. The offer and subsequent letters are referred to as the ‘Missives’. It can take two to three weeks or even longer before the missives are finally legally binding. After the excitement of the sale this can be a bit of an anticlimax for the seller, but please be re-assured that this is standard practice and that we are looking after your interests.

 

3. After conclusion of missives

 

During this period before the settlement date, it is not unusual for the purchaser to request access to the property for the purpose of measuring or obtaining estimates. This is not an unreasonable request but you should consult us first before allowing such access.

 

Behind the scenes at this time, we will be working hard to make the sale go as smoothly as we can for you. We will contact your mortgage lender, if any, to determine settlement figures, arrange the re-assignation of any life policies used for your present mortgage, and arrange a meeting with you to obtain the various signatures needed before the final settlement, discuss when you need to vacate the property and arrange for a handover of keys.

 

You should be arranging for final meter readings for gas/electricity, arranging mail re-direction and also notifying suppliers to stop deliveries of milk, papers etc.

 

If your property is to lie empty when you move out, we recommend that the plumbing and heating systems are turned off and drained down, especially in winter. If possible, you should turn the water on again before settlement but, if not, let us know that you have taken this precaution and also leave a note in a prominent location at the property advising the new occupier that you have taken these steps and where the stopcock is located.

 

4. Settlement of the Sale

 

At last, the day has arrived!  This is the day when we expect to receive payment of the full price and in exchange we will hand over the Title Deeds and keys. Please make sure we receive the keys in time!

 

From the sale price we repay any outstanding mortgage and settle fees and outlays. A cheque for any free proceeds will be paid to you as soon as possible, bearing in mind that we are usually paid by cheque.

 

If we are also acting for you in a property purchase, we will often retain funds to cover your requirements.

 

And finally…

 

This page covers general house sale procedures, however, no two transactions are the same!

 

Unforeseen problems can arise and we endeavour to resolve these as quickly as possible at the same time keeping you fully informed.

 

At Miller Hendry, every effort is made to ensure that the sale of your home goes as smoothly as possible with the minimum of inconvenience for you.

 

Please contact your nearest office for more information or to discuss your requirements.

 
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