Selling a Home

Selling a home can be daunting, especially becasue it usually means coordinating buying a new home at the same time. Our Plymouth based solicitors and lawyers can help you through the process, making sure you sell as swiftly and painlessly as possible.

Image of Family Packing Up after Selling a Home for Plymouth Conveyancing Solicitors

Below we will go through the stages of selling a home so that you can feel comfortable with the process but first we would like to highlight the main reasons for choosing Gard & Co. to guide you and complete the legal complexities:

  • Free initial discussion with no obligation
  • Fix fee quotation in person, by phone or online now
  • Friendly and approachable people
  • Your own dedicated conveyancer with direct line access
  • Law Society CQS accredited standards
  • No Move No Fee guarantee

Stages of Selling a Home


When you have accepted an offer on your home you will need to instruct a solicitor.  By choosing a Conveyancing Quality Scheme accredited solicitor you can be assured that your conveyancing will be conducted by a law firm that has passed very strict standards set by the Law Society.  When instructing your conveyancer they will need from you:

  • your details
  • your property address
  • details of mortgages (if any)
  • estate agents details (if any)
  • an energy performance certificate

When you have agreed a sale your conveyancer will need from you the:

  • agreed sale price
  • buyer’s name & address
  • buyer’s conveyancer’s details

Preliminary Enquiries

Detailed questionnaires will be sent to you to fill in, which will then be sent to your buyer’s conveyancer, as part of the contract package. If there is something that you feel you ought to disclose, mention it on the form to avoid delays later, e.g. an extension constructed without consent or dispute with neighbours.

Contract Preparation

The contract is prepared and sent to the buyer’s conveyancer with the questionnaires. The buyer’s conveyancer will study the papers and raise enquiries, which will be referred to you, if necessary.

Signing the Contract

When approved by the buyer’s conveyancer, the copy of the contract will be forwarded to you for your signature. Often at the same time, you will be sent the land registry transfer document for signature.

Negotiation of Completion Date

There is no point trying to finalise a completion date too early, particularly where there is a chain of transactions. You should not involve yourself in any irrecoverable costs until the date is fixed and this will only be on exchange. When all parties are ready to move to exchange, this is the time to begin to finalise the completion date and it is often the last term of the contract to be agreed. Having said this it is sensible to start a transaction with an estimated timescale.

Exchange of Contracts

It is customary for a 10% deposit to be paid on exchange, although very often a smaller sum is negotiated, particularly where a buyer is raising a mortgage of more than 90% of the purchase price. If you are in the middle of a chain you may not have to find a deposit for your purchase as the deposit presented by the buyer at the bottom is normally passed to the top of the chain, without addition by the parties in the middle.

Your conveyancer will exchange contracts over the telephone. The contract signed by you is exchanged with an identical contract signed by the other party. At this point all the terms of the contract crystallise e.g: the purchase price and the completion date are then fixed. This is the point of no return and you cannot withdraw without being in breach of contract. The seller’s conveyancer usually holds the deposit until the completion date, unless it is being used in connection with a simultaneous purchase.

There is nothing for you to do on the date of exchange other than to arrange building insurance, where necessary. As soon as exchange has taken place you will be notified by telephone, where possible.

Removal Arrangements

It is only after exchange of contracts that you can be certain of your moving date and can, therefore, finalise removal arrangements and begin to pack.

Preparation for Completion

After exchange your conveyancer will receive the contract signed by the buyer and any deposit. If you have a mortgage, a redemption figure will be obtained, calculated to the completion date. If you have an estate agent, the commission account will be obtained. Your conveyancer will then prepare an invoice and completion statement.


In most cases you will only have to worry about the smooth running of your removal arrangements, having signed all documents prior to completion.

The conveyancer will keep you informed of progress on the day of completion.

On the day of completion the buyer’s conveyancer will send the money by electronic money transfer to the seller’s conveyancer. In return the transfer document and all other relevant documents will be forwarded to the buyer’s conveyancer.

After Completion

On completion your conveyancer will pay off any mortgages, settle the agents commission account and any of the expenses for which you have given special instructions from the proceeds of sale. The net balance of the sale proceeds (if any) will be sent to you.

Help Us To Help You

The period before exchange of contracts can be frustrating and stressful and chains of transactions collapse all too frequently. Be prepared for the worst and you may find it easier to cope with, if it happens to you.

Transactions are less likely to fall down where there is good and careful communication between the various parties and representatives. Please help us to help you by keeping others fully informed of progress e.g. estate agents and your buyer or seller. If you have any special requirements then you should discuss them with your conveyancer at the outset and it would be helpful if you would put such requirements in writing, or email. This could also save delays and help ensure that nothing is overlooked.

So, if you would like further advice about selling a home please contact Anthony, Natalie, Catherine, KarenAmy or Michelle on 01752 668246 or send an email by clicking here. Alternatively you can obtain an online conveyancing quote by clicking on the button at the top of the page.

Anthony Longville
Natalie Barham
Karen McCormick
Amy Paterson
Michelle Pepper