Selling or buying a house requires going through the legal process of transferring its ownership from one party to another. This is called conveyancing. Whilst it’s supposed to be a really straightforward process, there are times that it can take so long that you feel the stress already building up. The best things to eliminate the stress is to actually get a professional – a licensed conveyancer or a property solicitor – to get things done for you.
To even set your expectations properly, you should know that there is no exact timeline to follow when going through conveyancing.
But how long does conveyancing take?
It depends on the factors that surround the sale/purchase. Removing all complicated instances though, you can expect conveyancing to be completed in 6 to 12 weeks on the average. It can even be quicker in some situations, especially if you’ve got all the paperwork sorted out ahead of time.
However, there are times that your own personal situations can drag the process on for a few more weeks. If you’re buying a property, getting your official mortgage approval can be one of the reasons your conveyancer cannot move forward to the next stage.
Transaction chains can also make the process move a bit slower. This is because the purchase or sale on the side that you or your seller might be doing would also have to go through the conveyancing process. If this is the case, you can look at several more weeks before you can actually see the entire process completed.
The property’s location is also one of the factors that could affect your conveyancing timeline. With the searches that the conveyancer have to conduct, their results could take from a day to a couple of weeks. These searches are important as they determine situations, development plans, and liabilities that could affect your property or living condition.
What factors can affect your conveyancing timeline?
When you’re buying, and particularly a previously owned property, you will need the seller to grant your conveyancer or your surveyor an access to the property to conduct pre-purchase inspections. And if it takes them long to respond to this request, or are being uncooperative, then conveyancing can take a little longer than you expect.
Your queries before finalising the purchase and exchanging contracts must also be addressed by the seller through their conveyancer. If this takes a while, so does completion of the conveyancing process for you.
Your own situations as a buyer can also drag the conveyancing process on. We’ve mentioned that getting your mortgage approval significantly affects the conveyancing timeline. If the delay in getting your mortgage is caught in the process of exchanging contracts, then you’re in for a while longer for conveyancing to complete. Of course, your seller needs to receive the monies first before everything is wrapped up.
There are times that even if you and the seller are ready to move along, the property itself shows some problems. Besides the time it takes to get the search and survey results before you move forward with the transaction, the property’s title needs to be verified. And if there are errors in the Land Registry documents, or the property was not registered in the seller’s name, then it will take long to rectify that.
In conclusion, it’s worth noting that every conveyancing process in every transaction is different. A definite timeline has not been set by the governing bodies as they’re all dependent on certain factors which can make the process quicker or slower. What’s important here is that you have a diligent conveyancer who works on everything for you and sets your expectations properly, so you won’t have to hold your hands in your face to keep from screaming in frustration.