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Your Guide to
Buying a Property

Your Guide to
Buying a Property

Your Guide to
Buying a Property

Who is
Involved?

AT A GLANCE

You

Lyons Bowe

Estate Agent

Your Mortgage Broker

Mortgage Lender

Property Search Provider

HM Land Registry

Your
Role

Throughout the process of buying a property, you will need to:

  • Complete, sign, and return all of the legal documents required. Your solicitor will send these documents to you when you instruct them
  • Make the initial payment on account that covers the initial disbursements
  • Submit your ID documents for verification
  • Provide 6 months worth of bank statements in order to verify your funds
  • Read the reports that are provided to you by your solicitor
  • Pay the deposit, Stamp Duty Land Tax, and solicitor fees

Lyons
Bowe

You will need to instruct a solicitor when your offer on a property is accepted. Your solicitor will be responsible for:

  • Providing you with the legal documents and forms that you are required to complete, sign, and return to us
  • Assess the Draft Contract Pack submitted by the seller’s solicitor and raise any relevant enquiries
  • Order the formal searches on the property and providing you with a report on the results
  • Providing you with a report regarding the information we receive within the Draft Contract Pack
  • Providing you with a report on your mortgage offer, explaining any covenants
  • Dealing with the formalities of exchanging contracts on your behalf
  • Submitting the Stamp Duty Land Tax form on time
  • Submitting an AP1 form to the Land Registry to confirm change of ownership

Estate
Agent

Your estate agent will:

  • Help you to find a property that meets your requirements and budget
  • Manage the negotiations of property offers
  • Manage any issues or hiccups up and down the chain
  • Agree a completion date with you and other parties in the chain
  • Communicate with all parties in the chain to ensure a smooth transaction
  • Help to agree to a completion date

Your Mortgage
Broker

You may not be using a mortgage broker, but if you are, they will:

  • Act as an intermediary between you and mortgage lenders to find a mortgage that best suits your needs
  • Work with you to obtain approval for a mortgage
  • Collect all of the necessary documentation from you that the lender will need to approve your loan
  • Ensure any special conditions in your mortgage offer are met

Mortgage
Lender

If you are buying a property with a mortgage, your mortgage lender will:

  • Assess the affordability of the mortgage loan in order to grant or deny approval of the mortgage
  • Release the monies to your solicitor in preparation for Completion
  • Conducts their own research on the property to ensure that the property is worth the value of the mortgage

Property Search
Provider

The property search provider will:

  • Provide information about a property including water, sewerage, planning permission, property defects, chancel repair insurance, mining checks, and other searches

HM Land
Registry

HM Land Registry:

  • Registers the ownership of land and property in England and Wales
  • Records any changes of ownership, mortgages, or leases on the property

New
Instructions

AT A GLANCE

Your Welcome Pack

Draft Contract Pack Requested

Order Property Searches

Your Welcome
Pack

Your New Instructions Team are the first team you will work with when you instruct us. First, they will provide you with a Welcome Pack which includes all of the documentation you need to complete, as well as information you need to know. This Welcome Pack will usually include:

New Client Form

The New Client Form gives us all the information we need to set up your file with us. This form needs to be completed by all buyers and will be used to complete your Anti Money Laundering checks and Source of Funds checks.

Terms of Business

The Terms of Business is an agreement between you and Lyons Bowe that explains the service you will receive from us, and what we will need from you throughout your purchase. This also needs to be signed by all buyers.

ID Verification Instructions

ID Verification is a legal requirement, however please don’t hesitate to get in touch with your New Instructions Team should you have any questions. Make sure all buyers have two forms of ID ready to go such as a driving license or passport. Your Welcome Pack will include a list of approved forms of ID.

Source of Funds Instructions

We are legally required to undertake a source of funds check on all of our clients. This helps us to combat property fraud and money laundering. We will request at least 6 months worth of bank statements. If you have transferred your deposit funds over from a savings account, make sure you also provide us with 6 months worth of statements from the savings account, too.

Giftor’s Verification

If you are being gifted a deposit, or any money toward your purchase, your giftor will need to undergo source of funds checks, too.

Payment on Account Instructions

Your payment on account covers the third party costs or ‘disbursements’ that we will incur on your behalf at the new instructions stage of your purchase, such as ordering your property searches and processing your anti money laundering and ID checks. We can’t proceed to the next steps of your purchase without having received this payment first. Luckily, it couldn’t be easier! You can make your payment on account in our app, or by calling your local office.

The Lyons Bowe Abortive Pledge

Your payment on account will also cover our Abortive Pledge, which covers you should your purchase fall through due to no fault of your own. Should the seller pull out, you will not be charged for any of our legal fees, only the disbursements incurred up to that point.

Our Abortive Pledge is included in your payment on account. Should you wish to opt out of the Abortive Pledge, please do let your New Instructions Team know and they will make sure you are not charged. Please note however, that if you opt out of the Abortive Pledge and your purchase falls through for any reason, you will be charged for the legal fees as well as the disbursements incurred up to that point.

Draft Contract
Pack Requested

The Draft Contract Pack provides information such as the contract terms that have been agreed with your seller, evidence that the seller owns the property that you are buying, information about the property’s legal title and the seller’s Property Information forms. The pack will be reviewed by your Legal Team when your file is allocated to them.

In the Draft Contract Pack you will find:

  • Official copies of the Land Registry Title
  • Title plan (plans of the property)
  • TA6 and TA10 forms that have been completed by the seller
  • TA7 (applies to leasehold properties only)
  • Any additional documents provided by the seller such as any warranties or guarantee certificates

Good to Know

  • We cannot order your property searches until we have received the Draft Contract Pack
  • The seller will need to complete the TA6 and TA10, so it may take a few weeks before we receive the Draft Contract Pack
  • Our system will automatically notify your team to chase the seller’s side regularly for the Draft Contract Pack

Order Property
Searches

Property searches are searches that we order on your behalf from third parties to obtain information about the area surrounding property you are purchasing. In some circumstances, we may carry out further searches such as mining searches, land charges, and chancel repair searches. If these are necessary for your property, we will let you know.

What is included in the searches?

 

Local Authority Checks

Local Authority searches tell us if the property is:

  • Listed
  • In a conservation or tree preservation area of if a Renovation Grant is required
  • In a smoke control area
  • Subject to any existing proposals for new roads or traffic schemes
  • Near any contaminated land
  • Impacted by any local planning permissions
  • Impacted by any building regulations
  • Affected by Radon

 

Environmental Searches

Environmental searches highlight any impacts that may affect the property such as:

  • Landslides
  • Subsidence
  • Flood risks
  • Any old landfill contaminating the local land

 

Water and Drainage

Water and Drainage searches tell us:

  • Which local water company is responsible for water and drainage to/from the property
  • Any nearby public sewerage networks and whether any of these run close to the property
  • If any of your neighbour’s drainage and sewerage runs through the property

 

Mining Searches

Mining searches give us a report on:

  • Mine entries within 20 metres of the property’s boundary
  • Gas emissions from coal mines
  • Plans for future coal mining in the area
  • Other coal mining hazards reported in the area

 

Hints and Tips

In some circumstances, we may be required to carry out further searches on the property. If these are necessary, we will let you know. The time frame for receiving the results of the searches differs depending on the Local Authority providing the search we therefore cannot guarantee a fixed time frame for property searches, but on average we would expect to receive the searches back within 14-21 days.

Exchange &
Completion

AT A GLANCE

Exchange & Completion

Signing Contracts

Exchange

Completion

Property Registration

Exchange &
Completion

All the leg work is done, and we’re now ready to begin the process of Exchange & Completion! Your file has been allocated to your Exchange & Completion Team who will support you through the final stages of purchasing your property. This is the most exciting part of buying a property, but it’s also one of the most important so we’ve laid out what everyone needs to do below.

 

The documents that need to be signed are called the Contract and Transfer. Unlike the rest of the process, you will need to sign these documents in wet, black ink.

EXCHANGE

Exchange is the point at which all parties become legally bound to the completion of the property.

COMPLETION

Completion is the point at which legal ownership of the property is transferred. There will typically be a 1-2 week period between exchange and completion to allow the current owner time to move.

SIGNING
CONTRACTS

We will send the Contract and Transfer to you via post, or you can arrange to sign the documents in one of our offices. These are the final Contracts for the purchase of your property. Signing these Contracts alone does not make the transaction legally binding, the point at which the Contracts are exchanged makes the transaction legally binding.

We cannot exchange Contracts without all parties of the purchase signing them first.

EXCHANGE

This is the exciting bit! This is the point at which all parties become legally bound to the transaction of the property. It is safe to start packing boxes – moving day is just around the corner!

We’d highly recommend using the time between Exchange and Completion to take our property insurance, and start moving bills over.

Completion

Congratulations! You have completed on your purchase! You officially own your new property. The keys to your property will be released by the seller’s solicitor and you will be able to collect them from the Estate Agent.

Property
Registration

Now that completion has taken place, we’ll get started on registering the new ownership status of the property with HM Land Registry. This can take anywhere between 6-12 months. We’ll let you know as soon as the Land Registry has been updated.