Barbara’s stress busting tips for buying and selling

Buying and selling a home is an exciting but stressful time for everyone.  From the moment an offer is accepted the deal is on and everyone’s expectations are raised…

The situation is full of uncertainly for sellers: has the buyer got sufficient funds to proceed?  Is the sale dependant on a chain and if so how long is it?  If you’re buying you wonder is the property in good physical condition? Are there issues with the legal title and could the seller back out, even sell to someone else?

These fears can be allayed by getting good advice and help from trusted local property professionals.

The Estate Agentshould provide you with full details of the status of all parties in the chain and, liaising with other agents, be able to identify and assist in resolving any problems.

A local surveyorcan be instructed by a buyer to carry out a survey (not to be confused with the Mortgage Valuation carried out by a surveyor appointed by the bank or building society). The buyer’s survey will highlight any problems and advise on any further investigations required.   

Focus on the ‘exchange of contracts’, fixing the moving date should help put an end to the nerves.  No party in the chain can withdraw without serious legal penalties once contracts are exchanged.

But, how can stress be further reduced between negotiating the sale and exchange of contracts?

With 30 years’ experience as a local property solicitor, in my view efficient and effective communication is the key.  Choose an experienced solicitor who you can easily talk and relate to, be that in person, by telephone, letter, e mail or fax.  Discuss with them what you’re looking for to ensure your expectations in terms of cost and timescales are realistic.

With the demise of Home Information Packs or HIPs, make sure you fully understand the legal nature of what you are buying, if you don’t ASK.  If issues arise, discuss these with your solicitor and check if you, the estate agent or the solicitor can help sort it out, possibly through alternative strategies.   In this way, with a good team on your side and a bit of good luck the inevitable stress surrounding a move can be greatly reduced for you and your loved ones.                                                      

If you would to speak to Barbara about one of her articles, or are looking for advice on the sale or purchase of a property, please feel free to call us.