The home I’m buying has been empty for two years; what questions should I be asking the solicitor, the estate agent, and the surveyor?
If a home has been empty for a considerable period (such as the two years mentioned here), there’s usually a reason for it. There is estimated to be around a quarter of a million properties in the country that have been empty for more than 6 months.
The primary reason is that the owner hasn’t the funds to renovate the property, or they’ve started gutting the place and run out of money to take it further, or perhaps there’s been a significant problem (e.g. fire or flood are common instances). Most likely, these properties will come up at auction.
Your estate agent will be aware of its history if the property is on their books, so you can find out a lot from them, the council will have an empty property officer, and the Land Registry will have information on the deeds. As far as the solicitor is concerned, they will establish the position on the property as part of the conveyancing, while the surveyor will have experience of checking out such properties, with the advice that you order a Building Survey (the most detailed of the options) to check out its structural integrity. Note that mortgage lenders will be more reluctant to offer a loan on such homes.
Ultimately, the ball is in your court and, if you want to pursue buying such a property, you need to be prepared to do the research, which can take up a lot of time.
The moving process can be bewildering and stressful. Let Homeward Legal look after the legal side of things for you and we'll guide you through the process from start to end. Call 0800 038 6699 to find out more.
Who do I give the appliance warranties to if they are being left at the property I’m selling?
If you are leaving what is generally termed ‘white goods’ at the property you are selling, which are still in warranty, the documentation should be given to your solicitor so that any warranties can be given to the buyer’s solicitor as part of the contract.
Note that, should you be leaving any electrical (or other) items at the property, this should be made clear on the Fixtures and Fittings Form (TA10) and agreed as early as possible between you and the buyers, particularly if you want financial recompense in so doing.
Is antimony (Sb) soil contamination likely in Hightown?
Hightown industrial or agricultural can cause soil contamination. Metal contamination of soil in Hightown is more likely to occur near factories and other industrial sites. Data on other contaminants, like groundwater contamination and organohalides, will also be included in an environmental search.
Our mortgage lender will be Holmesdale Building Society - is there anything we need to check?
Buyers should consider that some lenders have limited the firms who can act for them, which may result in increased legal costs for buyers. Homeward Legal can act for many lenders.
I am planning on buying a period property in a Hightown conservation area. How do we find more data on the standard of upkeep?
English Heritage, a government body, have assembled records in relation to the condition of conservation areas along with the trend. Conservation areas in Hightown are created by the local authority (Sefton) who administer everything from paths to excessive road signs.
Should I list my property with more than one estate agent?
The choice is entirely up to you and your specific circumstances. Going with a sole agent is probably the cheapest option (although the reach to buyers is dependent on how many clients are on their books), while multiple agents will be more expensive (but will reach a broader client base).
If you’re looking for a quick sale or the market is rather sluggish, it makes sense to put your property on with a number of agents. If the market is buoyant, it makes more sense to place the property with a sole agent.
Whichever you choose, you should always check the terms and conditions so that you know what service you’re getting for your money and how much it will cost you once the home is sold. You should also understand if there are penalties should you decide to place the property with more or fewer agents later on during the agreement period.
Do Homeward Legal manage the conveyancing for auction properties in Hightown?
Yes - Homeward Legal commonly handle the legal work for buyers at auction. We invariably encourage buyers at auction to instruct a suitable property lawyer prior to the day of the auction for a review of the legal pack. Subsequently, following the auction your instructed lawyer is thoroughly geared up to finishing the transaction inside a as tight time frame as conventionally required .