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Purchases are more involved as usually there are three key elements that need to be in place: the searches (more about those later), the financial arrangements (often a mortgage), and the contract pack containing all the information that we need to know about the property.
Remember that we are here to help, not just with the technical legal work to ensure that you don’t acquire a property with a problem, but also to ensure that the transaction is as swift and smooth as possible, and to iron out any issues that arise during the course of it. The safeguarding of your investment is our priority.
We are often asked what searches are for and why you need them.
If you are having a mortgage then searches are essential (we have to take care of the lender’s security as well as yours).
If you are a cash buyer then we cannot recommend highly enough that you still invest in the searches as the cost of NOT having the searches can far outweigh the financial outlay. Would you still want to buy a house knowing that it had a mineshaft under the driveway, or that HS2 would be running through your back garden?
Nor do we recommend that you dispense with the searches in favour of an insurance policy as some conveyancers do. Imagine buying a property that you didn’t know was subject to, say, a compulsory purchase order, making that property your own, only to lose it later and be left with the aggravation of an insurance claim.
Searches are based on data records held by the relevant authorities such as the Coal Authority, Severn Trent Water, the local council, not on a physical inspection.
Some of the searches like the local authority, environmental, water and drainage are uniform wherever you are in England and Wales; some are area specific. For example, in Stoke on Trent a coal mining search is standard, in the south-west of England it is a metalliferous search (their mining activities were historically tin, lead, copper and so on), in Stafford and surrounding areas HS2 can be an issue. You may also want to find out about fracking, wind farms, flooding, proposed nearly developments.
We will advise you if we think any additional searches are required and report to you fully on their results.
If you have any questions or you would like to discuss this in more detail, then please do not hesitate to call our Residential Property team at our Stafford office on 01785 252377 or our Stoke on Trent office on 01782 813315.
Buying and Selling at the same time
The most important thing to have when buying and selling simultaneously is patience. Even the shortest chain has people needing to go through the same processes as you. Sometimes the chain takes a while to build, there can be a snag or two along the way, or a link in the chain breaks down. Relax and rest assured that we will know when to apply pressure where it is needed and when you will need to sit tight and chill.