June Market Comment 'Time is Money'
If you want your property transaction to go as smoothly as possible then call in the professionals. Steve Cook, Partner of Clarke Gammon Wellers offers some words of advice.
The true cost of moving home should always be counted in more than monetary terms. There is the cost of time and the emotional toll as well.
Time is one of the key components to a successful sale. But nowadays transactions seem to be taking longer than ever. There is no political will to speed things up: in fact new legislation and financial guidelines are acting to slow things down.
So if the authorities and service sectors aren’t going to help it is up to the buying and selling public to help themselves. Fortunately there are some good ways of doing this.
Buyers are now hampered further by fresh rules from the lenders who are being far more inquisitive about our earnings and spending habits. All this occupies yet more time, and many bank and building society branches are taking two, three and even four weeks to interview applicants in the first place. So buyers should think ahead and get their funds in place early. They should also remember that if they have an ‘in principle’ mortgage arrangement which is more than a couple of months old the new lending criteria rules may mean that they can’t borrow as much now as they were previously told.
Choose a Solicitor Carefully
It’s not all down to the buyers. There is an onus too on the seller. Despite the fact that they may be in a hurry, can their own solicitors act quickly enough – especially when faced with a cash purchaser who wants a swift deal? Many solicitors shed conveyancing staff during the downturn and have not replaced them. This means law firms can struggle to keep up with the dramatic uplift in property transactions. So sellers should question any solicitors before they hire them and gain some strong assurances.
Thinking ahead and not cutting corners will help buyers and sellers enormously to save time and worry. Cheap estate agents and conveyancers may sound attractive at the start of a sale or purchase. But their true cost in money, time and anguish can only be really counted at the end of a transaction. As Red Adair, the legendary oil well fire fighter, said, “If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur”.