Buying your Property

Your Ultimate Guide to Buying a Property

Are you considering purchasing a property but feeling overwhelmed by the process? Don’t worry – Brockenhurst Estate Agents is here to help. Our comprehensive guide will walk you through every step of buying a property, from determining your budget to closing the deal. Whether you’re a first-time buyer or an experienced investor, our expert advice and insider tips will ensure a smooth and successful transaction.

Step 1: Define Your Goals

Before you start house hunting, take some time to clarify your goals and priorities. What type of property are you looking for? What features are non-negotiable, and what are nice-to-have? Consider factors such as location, size, amenities, and budget to narrow down your search criteria.

Step 2: Get Your Finances in Order

Knowing how much you can afford is crucial when buying a property. Evaluate your financial situation, including savings, income, and expenses, to determine your budget. Consider getting pre-approved for a mortgage to strengthen your buying power and streamline the process.

Step 3: Start Your Search

Once you have a clear idea of what you’re looking for and how much you can afford, it’s time to start your property search. Browse listings online, and work with a reputable estate agents to find properties that meet your criteria. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and seek guidance throughout the search process.

Step 4: Conduct Due Diligence

Before making an offer on a property, it’s essential to conduct thorough due diligence. This includes inspecting the property, reviewing relevant documents (such as the title deed and survey report), and researching the neighbourhood.

Step 5: Make an Offer

Once you’ve found the perfect property, it’s time to make an offer. Work with your estate agent to determine a competitive offer price based on market trends and property condition. Negotiate terms and conditions, including the purchase price, closing date, and contingencies, to ensure a favourable outcome.

Step 6: Close the Deal

Once your offer is accepted, it’s time to close the deal. Work with your solicitor and mortgage lender to finalise the paperwork and arrange for the transfer of funds. Conduct a final walkthrough of the property to ensure everything is in order before signing the closing documents.

Step 7: Move In and Enjoy

Congratulations – you’re now a homeowner! Take some time to celebrate your achievement and settle into your new home. Don’t forget to update your address, set up utilities, and explore your new neighbourhood. And remember, Brockenhurst Estate Agents is always here to help with any questions or concerns you may have along the way. Happy house hunting!

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I’ve found a property I love. What do I do now?

It is advisable to apply for a Decision in Principle from a mortgage lender and find a solicitor before you make an offer.  Your Move have carefully selected specialist partners, that can assist with these services. Or, take a look at our guides on the full buying process in England and Wales, or Scotland.

How long will it take to complete my purchase?

Every purchase is different, and your position and the seller’s position need to be taken into consideration before this question can be answered accurately. If the seller has already vacated the property and you have already secured a mortgage, exchange of contracts and completion can happen relatively quickly.

However, if you need a mortgage and the seller is still in the property, the exchange of contracts normally takes between 4 and 6 weeks, the completion takes between 2 and 4 weeks. So, in total you should expect up to 10 weeks to complete the purchase. Please note that in Scotland conclusion of missives normally takes between 6 and 8 weeks.

How much will conveyancing cost?

‘Conveyancing’ sounds like boring legal stuff, but it’s everything that needs to happen to make the property officially yours. It can be a confusing process and you need a solicitor to make it happen. Your Move can introduce you to a solicitor and offer a no sale no fee conveyancing service with a guaranteed fixed price to keep everything easy (this excludes disbursements). Contact your local branch to receive an accurate quote for how much this will cost.

How much will stamp duty cost?

If you are buying in England and your property costs more than £125,000 then you will have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT), unless you are a first-time buyer which means you don’t have to pay any SDLT on a property up to £300,000. The amount you pay does depend on the value of your property as it is worked out on a percentage of your purchase price.

See our stamp duty guide for more details and for the costs use our stamp duty calculator.

In Scotland it is slightly different, the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax Rate applies. See our Land and Buildings Transaction Tax Rate guide for details and for costs of rates use our LBTT calculator.

Do I need a survey?

Your mortgage lender will arrange a mortgage valuation that you will have to pay for in order to secure a mortgage. A mortgage valuation merely confirms with the lender that the property is worth what you are being loaned and will not give details on the condition of the property.

We recommend that you arrange your own survey whenever you purchase a property. It allows you to see the current condition of the property, reducing the chance of nasty surprises further down the line. There are three main types of surveys with varying costs and your local Your Move branch can introduce you to a local surveyor from our sister company e.surv Chartered Surveyors. Find out more about getting a house survey.

In Scotland there will already be a survey as part of the Home Report which is available to you.

When do I need to pay the deposit?

The deposit is paid to the seller’s solicitor, usually upon exchange of contracts. This is not applicable in Scotland.

When will my mortgage lender release the funds?

The mortgage will be requested from the lender by your solicitor. It usually takes around 4-5 working days for the lender to release the money being loaned. Your solicitor will take this time into account when advising you of the earliest possible completion date.

What are searches?

Your solicitor will perform searches of the Land Registry and Local Authority information. They will be checking for planning history, and any potential developments around roads, drainage and mining near the property.

When do I sign the contract?

After the sale is agreed, the seller’s solicitor will draft a contract. Your solicitor will confirm the details of the property and perform searches. At the same time, your mortgage lender will need to conduct a mortgage valuation and send you a mortgage offer. Once all of this is complete, you will be ready to sign. Please note this is different in Scotland, refer to the Scottish buying process.

Your new home awaits.

Let’s Connect Over Coffee, or a Friendly Chat!

At Brockenhurst Estate Agents, we’re all about building relationships and having meaningful conversations. Whether you’re not quite ready to make a move, have questions about your local area, or simply want to learn more about the Brockenhurst experience, we’re here to listen and offer insights. Reach out to us anytime – we’re eager to chat!”

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