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Residential Property

Buying or selling a property is always an important decision – but it needn’t be a stressful one.

Napthens’ property specialists make things easier for you by giving you the support and plain-English advice you need – in the way you want it. You can talk to us face-to-face, by phone or online, whichever you prefer.

Our industry-leading, user friendly online system gives you instant access to your case so you can easily log in and keep an eye on progress. And that’s backed by our rapid response policy ensuring that when you have a question, it’s answered fast.

 

It doesn’t replace our face-to-face service though, it supports it – we still love to talk to our clients. Just pop in or call us and find out for yourself. From our experienced and friendly team you’ll be assigned a dedicated conveyancer who will deal with all your needs from start to finish.

As winners of the LFS Regional Conveyancing Firm of the Year Awards 2014, and shortlisted once again this year, you can be assured that the Napthens’ team is “totally committed to client care.” 

Contact us today for advice including:

Ask us a question by making an enquiry to our Residential Property New Business Team or get a fixed price quote for buying, selling or re-mortgaging.


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I am a first time buyer looking to purchase a house. The particulars say there is a ‘chain’. What does this mean?
As a first time buyer, you are essentially at the bottom of the chain as you do not have a property to sell. A chain means that your seller is also buying a property, and it would be sensible to check with the estate agents whether the owner of that property is in turn buying onwards. This way, you get an idea of how many ‘links’ there are in the chain and how many parties need to co-ordinate the various sale and purchase transactions to work towards a mutually achievable exchange and completion date.

I am building an extension to add value to my property before I eventually sell. Is there anything I need to consider?
When undertaking any work of this kind, it is important to keep copies of all relevant certificates, as these will be required when you come to sell your property. These include copies of any planning permission and building regulations approval and completion certificates, guarantees and service agreements for your gas and electrical installations, and a copy of the landlord’s consent if the property is leasehold. Of course, before commencing any work, it is important to really consider how much value will be added to your house, and it may be worth having a survey conducted.

I am buying a house. Should I consider having a survey done?
Yes. There are three main options available. The most basic type of survey is a mortgage valuation, which your lender will require if you are planning on obtaining a mortgage. If you are buying a relatively new property, it may be satisfactory but it will not give a particularly in depth report. This report is done on behalf of the lender and the buyer may not be able to rely upon it if it is incorrect. The next option is to have a Homebuyer’s Report and Valuation conducted. This will give you a greater degree of insight into the state and condition of the property, but will also say what has not been checked (eg the carpets have not been taken up to inspect the floorboards). Finally, you could have a full structural survey. This is the most expensive option but is sensible to consider, especially for high value or older properties, listed buildings or properties in need of serious renovation. Additionally, make sure you have thoroughly inspected the property yourself and don’t solely rely on the estate agents particulars.

I am keen to sell my house as quickly as possible. Is there anything I can do to speed up the process whilst I am trying to find a buyer?
There are several things which can be done up front that could speed the process along once you have a buyer. Arrange the Energy Performance Certificate, which must be done before you market the property. Next, find the deeds to the property, and further documentation such as building regulations and planning documents, guarantees, ground rent receipts and utility bills – having these to hand can save a lot of time in the future. List the contents of your home which could be left at the property (curtains, wardrobes etc) and consider which you would like additional money for and which can be used as a bargaining tool. This is not an exhaustive list, but should go some way towards preparing for a quick sale once a buyer has been found.

I have been told I will need to do ‘searches’ before buying a property. What does this mean and what do they include?
There are various searches you can undertake before buying a property which your mortgage lender may require. Searches include: Local Search – gives information about the local area, including any planning entries, tree preservation orders, adopted roads etc. Water & Drainage Search – shows the location of sewers, drains and pipes and whether or not they are adopted. Mining Search – if the area has a previous or current mining history then this search highlights any likelihood of mine shafts in the area. Envirosearch – shows if the property may stand on an area of seriously contaminated land, flooding, landslip or subsidence as well as showing any land fill sites nearby. Chancel Repair Liability Search – shows if you may be liable to fund repairs to your local church, and if there is a potential responsibility, an insurance policy can be taken out to protect against this. Subject to the location of the property, additional searches such as Mining, Tin and Brine Searches may also be recommended.

My partner and I are buying our first house but have been told there are two different ways of owning a property. What are our options?
When you buy a property jointly with someone else, it can be held as ‘Joint Tenants’ or ‘Tenants in Common’. In a joint tenancy you will each own the property together and, if one owner dies, their share of the property automatically transfers to the other owner, even if a Will has not been made or says something different. It is common for married couples to buy as joint tenants. With Tenants in Common, each party owns a ‘share’ of the property, usually as a 50/50 spilt (although it is possible to have more than two owners or an uneven split). This means that should one owner die, their share of the property is passed on to whoever is specified in their Will, which is not necessarily the other owner. Co-owners who are not married or who have contributed unequally to the price of the property may buy as tenants in common. In this case, it is very important that co-owners make Wills.

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