How Long Does Conveyancing Take?

Sarah Ryan, Head of Private Client
Author:
Sarah Jones
Head of Property, Licensed Conveyancer
Date:
16/09/2020

In England and Wales the Conveyancing process normally takes less than 3 months, but it can be delayed because of a number of different reasons. For example, the process can take longer if you are:

  • Part of a chain
  • Buying a New Build
  • Having issues with your mortgage lender
  • Buying or selling a property with Shared Ownership
  • Waiting on more information about a Leasehold property
  • Using a Help to Buy

Generally, the smaller your chain, the less likely you are to run into delays as the more people there are involved the longer the process could take.

If your move is delayed because of issues that are out of your control then there’s not too much you can do. But it’s important to know what could prolong the process so you know what to avoid before you begin your property transaction.

Our nationwide team of Conveyancers and Conveyancing Solicitors have years of experience so we can spot any red flags that could slow down your Conveyancing process. We always complete the legal work on our side quickly and efficiently, so you can rest assured that any delays won’t be on your part.

How Long Does Conveyancing Take after the Mortgage Offer?

Once the seller accepts the offer, you’ll need to contact your chosen mortgage lender and make a full mortgage application for the property. At this point you’re about halfway through the process, which would normally mean that you might only have around 4-6 weeks until completion (moving day). But it’s important to know that there may be delays on your mortgage offer due to the coronavirus pandemic.

At the moment, our Conveyancers are seeing delays in mortgage offers and some lenders are only lending where you can pay a 15% deposit or more. This means that since the market opened back up, it’s harder to find a mortgage with a 10% deposit unless you’re willing to agree to other terms, such as a longer fixed term mortgage. So make sure you do your research, and expect finding the right mortgage deal to take a little longer than usual.

After your mortgage offer is accepted, you’ll need to instruct a Conveyancer and have surveys carried out on the property. Surveys have also been delayed by the pandemic, which can often delay chains too. So speak to your Surveyor about deadlines before they start work for you.

Our Conveyancers offer a quick and pain-free service. Although your property transaction might be delayed due to factors out of our control, we’ll make sure any work we do for you is done efficiently, so you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

Tips to Speed Up the Conveyancing Process

When you’re buying a new home, you might think about the outside factors that could delay your property purchase or sale, but you might not have considered that you could be the one slowing down your move.

So here’s a few tips on what you can do to make sure you can move into your new home as soon as possible.

  • Speak to Mortgage Lenders First – You should speak to different mortgage lenders to see what they are willing to lend you based on your circumstances before you make an offer on a property. Agreeing to a mortgage first is called getting an ‘offer agreed in principle’, and some sellers won’t accept an offer until they know the buyer has an offer agreed in principle from a mortgage lender. It’s also important to be sure that the transaction can go ahead before you commit to it. A lender will normally keep the offer open for 3-6 months so you should act quickly so you don’t run the risk of losing the property. You might be able to get an extension on your mortgage offer if your property transaction is delayed. See What Do I Do if My Mortgage Offer is Due to Expire Next Month?

  • Get a Survey Done Soon – One thing that can put off your move is if the Surveyor finds any problems with the property. If they do, you could renegotiate the price. So getting a survey done as soon as the seller accepts your offer will give you time to consider if you still want to move into the property and at what price. It’s important to go into negotiations knowing what you’re willing to accept

  • Fill in Any Forms Quickly – If you’re the seller, you’ll need to complete the Property Information Form and Fittings and Content Form and send them back to your Conveyancer, who will pass them onto the buyer. You should always prioritise filling in and reviewing any forms, so that you can make sure all the work on your part is done. If you respond quickly, then the other party is likely to be more responsive too

  • Use a Good Conveyancing Solicitor – As so much of the Conveyancing process is the legal stuff, it’s important to get someone who knows what they’re doing and has the time to take on your transaction. Following the pandemic, there was a backlog of people whose property purchases had been put on hold which meant that some Conveyancers didn’t have the capacity to take on new clients. Do your research and find a Conveyancer that will work to your deadlines, and remember that they don’t need to be local to work for you

If you’re a buyer, you should get a Conveyancing Solicitor as soon as possible as we will instruct property searches for you. Alongside other things, searches have also been delayed because of Covid-19, so get a Conveyancer who will prioritise this first.

Our Conveyancers understand how stressful it can be to move into a new home. We know that the process can feel long and you might feel helpless if you’re waiting on other people.

We will take the time to get to know you so we understand your deadlines. Tell us what you want your move in date to be and one of our Conveyancers will work towards this with you. If we come across any unavoidable delays, we will always communicate this with you so you can plan this into your move.

For free initial advice call our Conveyancing Solicitors

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