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The Homeowners guide to Covid-19 Self-isolation

The coronavirus – Covid-19 – pandemic has seemingly sent the world into a spin. With people fighting over groceries and toilet roll, organisations and countries deciding to go into lock down, it can be difficult to comprehend what advice to follow. The UK is currently in the ‘delay’ phase of the governmental plan to tackle the virus.

But what does this all mean for homeowners? How does being in self-isolation impact your financial health? Below we take a look at the steps you can take to ensure you stay in the best financial shape during these uncertain times.

What about your mortgage?

Many homeowners wonder how they’d pay the mortgage if they were to lose their job. The Coronavirus has made this issue a reality for many, who have faced time off work in a bid to curtail the virus.

Employers are required to pay Statutory Sick Pay from the day self-isolation starts, but this reduction in pay can have a detrimental effect on your ability to pay your mortgage, household bills and other day to day living expenses.

Many highstreet lenders have announced that they’ll be giving their customers mortgage and loan repayment holidays, if they’ve been affected by the Coronavirus.

Lenders including RBS, NatWest, TSB, Virgin Money and Santander are looking at each customer’s case on a individual basis, and coming up with solutions to ease the financial burden during this tricky time.

What should you do?

If you are affected by Coronavirus, contact your mortgage provider at the earliest opportunity and explain what has been going on. Calling and seeking advice from them is a far more proactive approach than not paying the mortgage and awaiting the consequences.

Being open and honest with your provider, can hold you in good stead and allow you to set your finances accordingly.

Buying and/or selling your home

Unfortunately, the law allows for little or no leeway with regards to allowing provisions for Coronavirus.

If the conveyancing process is near completion and it’s a matter of exchanging contracts, the party that delays this due to issues surrounding Covid-19 (i.e. unable to get removal vans, self-isolation) can inccur additional costs from the other side, if the process isn’t completed within 10 days of one side issuing notice on the other.

The Law Society has issued guidance which advises conveyancers and solicitors that if Coronavirus affects any part of the process, the transaction reverts back to pre-exchange mode which prevents, either party incurring additional costs.

If you haven’t got to the exchange part of the process yet, you can ask your conveyancer or solicitor to add a clause into the contract surrounding Coronavirus. This clause would need to be approved by all parties in a chain.

What should you do?

Speak to your conveyancer/solicitor regarding the steps you can take to protect yourself during the conveyancing process from the Coronavirus.

If you are thinking of buying or selling a property, ring us on 0345 2413100 or email us at mail@cplaw.co.uk.