Delays in the purchase process


We like to wrap up the conveyancing side of a purchase as quickly as possible, but things sometimes crop up which can cause delays.

It can be frustrating when you are excited, all set to move, and you are hoping for a speedy process, but some things are out of your conveyancers’ control.

Residential Conveyancing Solicitor, Emma Newby, gives us the Top 10 causes for delays and some handy tips on how you can speed things along!

In at number 1…… Chain Delays

The most frustrating part of buying a property is being part of a chain. There’s nothing you can do to influence how quickly other people organise their conveyancing or surveys. We recommend that you speak to your conveyancer regularly and reply as soon as you can to any enquiries or requests for documentation.

2. Source of funds

Due to recent regulations, all solicitors need to see evidence of where the deposit monies have come from before proceeding with the conveyancing. The money could be coming from a previous sale, from your own savings, a gifted deposit from a parent or other family member, or you may have inherited the money. We need a detailed explanation as to where the funds are coming from and evidence of how this has been obtained. We encourage you to have the information available as early as possible to prevent delays before exchange.

3. Leasehold/Freehold management company

When you are purchasing a leasehold or freehold property, which is subject to an estate charge or management company, there are additional documents that we need to review and process. The seller’s solicitor also needs to obtain the relevant information from the freeholder or management company which can take some time.

4. Mortgage valuations and surveys

Mortgage valuations don’t take long to complete, but it can take time for your mortgage provider to arrange to have one carried out. Further in-depth surveys can also cause delays. When valuations or surveys have been carried out, the time it takes for the surveyor to write up their findings can take some time. We recommend if you are instructing a surveyor you should start this process as soon as you have had an offer accepted.

Half way there at number 5…… Mortgage offer

The mortgage lender needs to approve you for the mortgage amount you are borrowing and issue the offer. To assess a borrower’s ability to pay their mortgage, tougher mortgage tests have been put in place by mortgage lenders. It can take some time to provide the lender with all the documentation they need before they can confirm if you are able to borrow the amount that you need. The lender will also have timescales within which they have to deal with matters and these could be quite lengthy.

6. Search result delays

Most searches usually come back within a few days. The main local authority search can sometimes take longer, depending on where the property is located, and even the time of year. Sometimes this takes a few weeks but can take as long as 8 weeks for them to issue the results.

7. Title and property issues

Many property transactions go through without a hitch! But often there can be issues with the legal title, or with the property itself. These must be rectified before we can proceed to exchange of contracts. These issues could be relating to the property you are purchasing or one further down the chain. Depending on the complexity, it could take several weeks to resolve the issues before all parties can proceed to exchange and completion.

8. Signing & returning documents

There are numerous documents that need to be signed by both buyers and sellers, some of which need to be witnessed. Arranging to have this done can sometimes cause delays. To ensure that you don’t hold up the process, make yourself available to sign contracts, and always return documents as quickly as possible.

9. Transferring your deposit

Your conveyancer is responsible for collecting and transferring the money for your purchase. If you are putting a deposit in, you will need to transfer the deposit to us before exchange can take place. It is important that you have funds ready to transfer, check with your bank to make sure that the money will be available, and you are able to transfer this when requested to do so.

And at number 10…… Parties being on holiday

At certain times of the year, such as Easter, summer and Christmas, it is likely that one or more parties in the chain will be on holiday. Solicitors may also be closed over certain holiday periods. If you want your buying process to be speedy, it is important to consider this when deciding to move.

Our conveyancing team can help you to get the ball rolling on your purchase. Speak to us now on 0345 1228100




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