new home start to finish

Moving home, from start to finish

Conveyancing is the process of transferring the ownership of a property between a seller and a buyer.  It is a process usually undertaken by legal professionals, who deal with all the administrative work during the transfer, which ensures that it is done legally.

Here we look at each stage of the conveyancing process so you can anticipate what is due to happen next and what may be asked of you by your conveyancer to aid the process.

  1. Once you have made or accepted an offer on a property, you will be expected to instruct a conveyancing solicitor or licensed conveyancer, who will accept instruction and begin the process of exchanging details with the other party in the process. This is when a buyer’s conveyancer will request what is known as a contract pack, that includes:
    1. Seller’s formal instructions to their solicitor
    2. Completed property information form, a fixture and contents form, and any leasehold information
    3. Estate agent’s memorandum of sale
  2. Following an exchange of details and a mortgage approval, as well as any survey of the property that is required, the buyer’s conveyancer will carry out the necessary searches. These will typically include:
    1. Land registry office copies
    2. Local searches
    3. Water and drainage
    4. Chancel repair liability

There may be other searches that your conveyancer recommends depending on your circumstances.

  1. Your conveyancer will analyse the contract pack sent through from the seller’s conveyancer, along with the searches and mortgage offer, and will inform you of any important information as well as raise any questions with the seller’s conveyancer. It is at this point any potential completion dates will also be discussed.
  2. Your conveyancer, once you are happy with the contract, will inform the seller’s conveyancer that you are happy to exchange contracts. It is at this point you will send your deposit to your conveyancing solicitor to hold on trust until contracts are exchanged.
  3. On exchange of contracts, the conveyancers will swap signed contracts and the deposit is sent to the seller’s solicitor. It is at this point that you have entered into a contract to buy the property, and it is advisable to take out building insurance on the property as you are now liable for it.
  4. You will receive a completion statement from your conveyancer which sets out the amount required for you to complete. This will include any shortfall in the deposit and mortgage funding against the purchase price, as well as the amount owed to your conveyancer and any stamp duty payable.

It is at this point that a priority search is done at Land Registry.  This stops any charges (such as a mortgage or secured loan) being put onto the property for 30 days following the search. It is therefore important that you either complete within 30 days or have your conveyancer place another priority search so that you do not take on the surprise of an unwanted charge against the property.

  1. Your conveyancer will prepare the transfer deed that you will need to read carefully, sign and return.
  2. Your conveyancer will request the funds from the mortgage company as well as the remaining completion amount from yourself, so that all funds are ready for completion day.
  3. Your conveyancer will request the funds from the mortgage company as well as the remaining completion amount from yourself, so that all funds are ready for completion day.
  4. On the day of completion, both your conveyancer and the seller’s conveyancer will agree a time to transfer the funds and for the transfer to be complete. Your conveyancer will receive the signed transfer deeds, title deeds and confirmation that any mortgage on the property in the seller’s name has been redeemed.
  5. It is at this point completion has taken place, you can pick up your keys and move into your new property. However, your conveyancer will have a few more details to complete so that the process is legally registered.

They will send the signed transfer deed and any stamp duty to the Stamping Office.  They will then send the documents to Land Registry to register your ownership of the property.  Once they receive the title deeds back they will be forwarded to your mortgage provider and yourself.

Although it is perfectly legal for a person to do their own conveyancing, it is a very complicated process that if done incorrectly could cost a lot to resolve or even affect the legality of a transfer, therefore it is always advisable to use a reputable licensed conveyancer or conveyancing solicitor.


CP Law’s team of expert solicitors can help you move home at this time. Speak to a member of our team today, contact us on 0345 2413100 or email us at