Getting Your Paperwork in Order For Your Sale

In a conveyancing transaction, a seller’s solicitors will send contract papers to the buyer’s solicitors who will then review the paperwork and raise any necessary enquiries.  The seller and their solicitors will then need to answer the enquiries before the buyer’s solicitors can proceed to exchange.  Many enquiries are asking for documents which are referred to paperwork provided by the seller’s solicitors or in the buyer’s solicitors’ searches such as Land Registry documents, planning documents, building regulation certificates and guarantees.

A seller can assist in getting contract papers issued earlier and reducing the need for a buyer’s solicitors to raise enquiries by making sure they have their paperwork in order.  This may also save the seller money as parties such as the local authority, the Land Registry and other organisations charge fees to provide duplicate copies of documents such as leases, deeds and building regulation certificates.

When a seller buys a property, their conveyancer will send them a lot of paperwork during and after the transaction.  The seller should keep all the paperwork in a safe place so that they can give the paperwork to their conveyancer when they come to sell.  It’s fine to err on the side of caution and give your conveyancer lots of paperwork.  Your conveyancer will be able to work out what paperwork is relevant to send to the buyer’s solicitors.

If, during your ownership, you’re obtaining quotes for works such as window replacement works, gas boiler replacement and electrical works, it is a good idea to check that the company is registered with a reputable organisation such as FENSA, Gas Safe or NICEIC and to check that they will deal with the building regulations for the works.

If you carry out any works to the property, it is a good idea to keep the paperwork and add it to your file of paperwork for the property.  Buyer’s solicitors will usually ask for copies of planning permissions, building regulation certificates and guarantees and warranties in respect of works carried out at the property.  Providing this documentation at the start will mean the buyer’s solicitors won’t have to ask for these documents later on.

If when you bought the property, there were particular enquiries that were complicated and time-consuming to resolve, it is advisable to keep the paperwork in respect of those matters in case the same questions are raised when you come to sell.  For example, if you own a flat and your seller carried out building works without landlord’s consent and the seller had to obtain retrospective landlord’s consent in connection with your purchase, then when you come to sell, it is likely that your buyer’s solicitors will raise the same enquiry if you have not kept a copy.  If an issue was dealt with by the seller providing a legal indemnity insurance policy, then you can provide this policy to your buyer when you come to sell as most indemnity policies automatically pass to future buyers.  If, however, you have lost the policy by the time you come to sell, you may end up having to buy a new one.

If you are considering buying or selling a property, please contact Brian Craig on 020 7703 5034 or for timely advice.