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First stages of buying/selling a property – What should I expect?

• Both buying and selling a home can be a complex process.
• The first stage of the process establishes timescales and gathering documents.
• Your solicitor will help to walk you through each step.

Confirming identity and timescales for buyers and sellers

Buying or selling a home is an exciting but often complex process at times. There’s a lot of legal work to be done that must be completed by a professional. This week we’re guiding you through the five main stages of the conveyancing process for both buying and selling a property. The first stage focuses on establishing timescales and gathering the relevant documentation.

What will I need?

Your solicitor will need a copy of your identification to confirm identity, such as a driving licence or passport. If you’re buying a home, you’ll need proof that you have the funds to purchase a property, such as bank statements and where these funds have come from.

If you’re selling a property, you’ll need to provide a range of documents to your solicitor, such as the property title, utility details, history of boundary disputes, whether any tenants are living there, and any fixtures and fittings included in the sale of the house. Together these will be referred to as the ‘sale pack’.

How fast will the process be?

This depends as all transactions are different. If you’re in a chain this is likely to take longer than if you’re a first-time buyer.

What date should I be working towards?

If you have a preferred date in mind, tell your solicitor so that they can keep you updated and work towards this target. Remember though, the completion date is only fixed once the contracts have been exchanged.

How do I raise any queries or concerns?

If buying a house, your solicitor will help to resolve any issues spotted within the ‘sale pack’.

You will be sent copies of the replies to enquiries provided by the seller, and the fixtures and fittings forms, so you can ensure they reflect what you know about the property. You’ll also be sent the property plan so you can check and confirm the boundaries are as you expected.


Our expert property lawyers can answer any queries you may have regarding the conveyancing process. If you’re looking to buy or sell a property, contact our team today or get a free conveyancing quote.

If you’re buying or selling a house, find out what you need to know during each stage of the process in the links below:

Stage Two: Surveys and searches

Stage Three: Buying a new-build home

Stage Four: Exchanging contracts and deposit

Stage Five: Completion

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