A Guide to Moving

We have prepared this guide to give you some idea on how the transaction should proceed and is part of our commitment to making your move as painless as possible. 


  1. Contact us as soon as a buyer has been found, or you are optimistic that an offer will shortly be made, so that:-

    1. We can give you a breakdown of the costs involved  
    2. You can complete a Sale Questionnaire and Fixtures and Fittings List to enable us to issue the contract promptly
    3.  If your Property is Leasehold we will also need you to complete a Leasehold information Form and supply details of the company(s) you pay the ground rent and service charge.

  2. A draft contract will be issued to the buyers lawyers, together with all the necessary supporting documents.  When the contract has been approved, we will ask you to sign this in readiness for exchange of contracts.

  3. When the buyers have received their local search and mortgage offer and their lawyer is satisfied as to the title, we will negotiate a completion date and the deposit.  Contracts can then be exchanged.

  4. On the day of completion, you must clear and vacate the property by 12 noon, leaving the keys with the Estate Agents. We will redeem any existing mortgage(s) and settle the Estate Agents account (if applicable).



  1. When you let us know you have found a property to purchase, we will ask you to complete a Purchase Questionnaire, the answers to which will assist us in our enquiries. We will also ask you for money on account, so that we can carry out the preliminary searches.

  2.  As soon as we receive your instruction form and money on account, we will put in hand searches to avoid any delay.

  3.  When we receive the contract from the seller’s lawyer, we will:-

    1. Approve the contract and title.  We may feel it necessary to raise additional enquiries of the seller’s lawyer. When we are satisfied that all is in order, we will return one copy of the contract to the sellers lawyers, for signature in readiness for exchange of contracts

  4. If you require a mortgage, the offer has to be received from the Lender before exchange of contracts. 

  5. When we have received the local search and offer of mortgage and have satisfied ourselves as to the title, we will report to you and ask you to sign the contract and mortgage deed.  We will also ask you for the deposit to be used on exchange of contracts.  If you have a related sale, we will usually be able to arrange that the deposit received from your buyers is used for your purchase and passed up the chain.



  1. An exchange of contracts can take place once a completion date has been agreed. The majority of people buying and selling are involved in A CHAIN!  This means that there is a linked series of transactions and EVERYBODY wants to sell and buy on the same day so that they do not have to pay for bridging finance or rented accommodation.  We therefore have to wait until all parties in the chain have:-

    1. A mortgage (if required)
    2. Search results
    3. Title approved
    4. Agreed a completion date

      We will liaise with the Estate Agents, and other lawyers until the exchange has been achieved.

  2. If you are just buying a property we will need a 10% deposit from you as cleared funds.

  3.  When exchange has taken place, the completion date is legally binding and you can now organise your move.  

  4. You should keep in place any buildings insurance you currently have in place on a property being sold until Completion but also put on risk buildings Insurance for the property you are purchasing



  1. We will let you have a statement showing all the costs and disbursements due and will draw this up as soon as possible so that you can arrange to let us have the balance as cleared funds no later than the working day before completion  We will also request any mortgage finance the working day before completion.

  2. On completion day, if you have a sale, we must wait for the buyer’s lawyer to send us the sale money by telegraphic transfer before we can send out the money by the same method on your purchase.  This means that it is unlikely that you will get the keys to your new house before lunch time on the day of completion.  We would suggest that you do not leave your old house, before you have checked with us that it is in order for you to do so.  If you just have a purchase, we can usually send the money quite early on the morning of completion, but you are unlikely to get the keys before mid-day as you must allow the seller time to vacate the property.



There are a number of factors that can influence how long a transaction takes, from the number of people in the chain, their individual motives as to timescale, any potential issues that need to be overcome and so on.  We will always work to your instructions but of course the chains pace will be that of the slowest in the chain. On average transaction time is 6-8 weeks from receipt of contracts but this is only a guide; leasehold/shared-ownership transactions tend to take longer due to third party involvement; Newbuilds or where a newbuild is involved tend to move quicker to exchange due to most developers imposing an exchange deadline (usually28 days) but then completion is often delayed pending the property being built.