Buying a property after lockdown…

Date Added 12.05.20

If you are considering buying a property after the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown has been lifted, there are lots of things you can do now to prepare in order that when the time comes you can start the process more quickly.

To help Tollers have outlined below the things that you should do to prepare.

Make sure you have appointed a Solicitor:
  • First and foremost you need to know the costs involved in buying your property, so it is important to obtain a quotation for these. You can contact Tollers Conveyancing teams by email on enquiries@tollers.co.uk and they can prepare a quote for you – you will need to provide your property details, mortgage lender name (if known), number of parties buying and current value in order that the team can put the quote together for you.  If you are a first time buyer or are buying a second home let the team know so the correct stamp duty land tax rate can be applied.
  • If you instruct Tollers now we can send you the Purchase Instruction Form for you to complete in readiness, so that once the lockdown is lifted you are prepared to buy.
Prepare all the documentation you need to buy your property:
  • If you are obtaining a mortgage, ensure your broker/lender has all the information they need. Hunt out those P60s and payslips whilst you can!
  • You may have advised your mortgage lender of a potential gift to purchase the property. As solicitors we have strict Money Laundering Regulations to comply with, so it can take some time to collate the necessary information.  We will send you a source of funds form and can talk you through what evidence we will require, in order to start the process in advance.
  • You may be having a lenders valuation (survey) but many clients have additional surveys carried out. Consult with your surveyor as soon as possible about any investigations you wish them to investigate. Surveyors will be very busy after lockdown as there will be a backlog of 6/10 weeks or longer.
  • If you are utilising a Help to Buy ISA check whether you need to attend your bank to close this nearer exchange or whether this can be carried out online for you. Booking an appointment with the Bank post lockdown will be quite time consuming. Being prepared is key to a swift move.
What else can you do:

As well as putting together all of the necessary documentation in preparation to instruct your solicitor, if you have found a property you wish to buy, check out the area around your chosen property on the internet.  Look at the sold house prices in the area, compare the photographs from previous sales to check for any building work.

You may wish to also check to see how good the local schools are if you have a family or are planning one.  Check out your local amenities, is there a decent local pub?  Are shops easily accessible either by foot, car or public transport?   Are there plans for any new developments that could turn a sleepy village or quieter location into a busy estate? Better to be forewarned of anything that may affect you in the future and could have meant you would have made a different decision or offer if you had still decided to proceed.  One check that people often forget is to look at the local crime rates, there are websites where you can consider the crime statistics, such as https://crime-statistics.co.uk/postcode – do you want to take the risk of moving to a crime hotspot!

It is also important to keep up to date on the latest news regarding how the market will run once lockdown is lifted.  Government officials and property Industry representatives are meeting regularly and the advice can change quickly.

If you have any other questions on how to prepare for buying a property after lockdown Talk to Tollers Conveyancing Solicitors on 01604 258558 or email them at enquiries@tollers.co.uk and they will be happy to assist.

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