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What happens on completion day?

Wednesday 15 Jun 2022

This month is a busy one for ‘completions’ at David Phillip Estate Agents, but what exactly is completion?

Completion is the day when as a buyer you collect the keys for the property and you can start moving into your new home. This is always a week day so that the banks can transfer money and is always agreed in advance. So what can you do to ensure the day runs smoothly.

Plan ahead for your removal day – clean the property, plan the removals and start packing up your belongings. Always communicate regularly with your conveyancing solicitor, they will be working as quickly as they can, but a helpful nudge in the right direction will never go a miss. Ensure your paperwork and funds are in order.

Prior to completion, the buyer’s conveyancing solicitor, will request the money from the lender and check all the mortgage conditions have been met.

Your conveyancing solicitor deals with the paperwork and deeds, confirms the transaction and signs off the mortgage completion statements if you are the seller – this all takes place on completion day.

A Redemption certificate will be requested by the seller’s solicitors if there is a mortgage on the sellers property.

Completion statements of all payment made and received will be set out by both sets of solicitors – any invoices to be paid, including the Estate Agents fees will be set out, the final checks will then be made and then the buyer’s solicitor will transfer the purchase money to the seller via the banking system. If the seller fails to transfer the funds on completion day then a fine will be issued, however, if you were unable to pay because your buyer did not come up with the money then they will pay a penalty.

Once the seller’s solicitor has received the funds then they will instruct the Estate Agent to release the keys which can then be collected from the Agent’s office. If the funds are not received from the buyer’s solicitor generally by 4pm, then completion will not take place until the following day.

If there is more than one party in the chain then this has the potential to also cause issues – if any of the chain falls through then this can halt the process or even bring the sale to a grinding halt.

It is standard for completion to happen between 7 to 28 days after exchange of contract – our ‘normal’ is 7 days, however we have exchanged and completed on the same day, which is becoming increasingly common – it also speeds up the conveyancing process and means you don’t have to pay a deposit on Exchange of contracts. There are though downsides, other than the high stress levels – because it can happen at very short notice it may make it difficult to arrange the removal company and if anything does go wrong there is very little time to put it right! – same day exchange and completion is much easier if the sale is chain free and a cash purchase.

Once you have completed the sale, the buyer’s solicitors will call the Estate Agent selling the property to confirm key release – keys can then be collected from the Estate Agents.

So, if you are considering selling your home and would like further details and information regarding the house selling process, call David Phillip FRICS on 01134 676 400

A: 86, Leeds Road, Bramhope, Leeds, LS16 9AN w: e:

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