Step 2 – Legal documents

Preparing the legal documents

The Seller’s solicitor/conveyancer makes ready all the legal documents he/she believes the Buyer’s solicitor will need.

Since 2003 the “Deeds” have been dematerialised and the Land Registry holds only a computer file. There is no longer a Title Deed. If you bought before 2003 then you or your Lender will hold the original Deeds. There are however many other documents which may delay the sale if they are not available. Chief is Building Regulation consent for any alterations in the last ten years – this now also applies to Double Glazing (which requires a FENSA Certificate since April 2002) and some other alterations. Any new electrical installation installed after 1st January 2005 needs a qualified electricians certificate. Any new heating appliance (including central heating boilers) installed after 1st April 2005 needs a Gas Safe Certificate or the equivalent. If any of these documents are missing it can mean a lengthy delay whilst duplicates or retrospective Building Regulation consent are sought. If appropriate we will need to contact your Lender for your Deeds and also to check the amount needed to repay the mortgage and any penalties for early redemption.

The Seller will be asked to complete a “Property Information Form” and a List of Furnishings Fixtures and Fittings included or excluded from the sale

The Seller’s solicitor/conveyancer then prepares the contract and submits this with the other deeds and documents to the Buyer’s solicitor. Once the Buyer’s solicitor/conveyancer is happy with the documents they will “approve” the contract and return it, so that it can be signed by the seller.

Conveyancing guide