There are important factors to consider if you are purchasing a property which is not yet built. It requires a specialist lawyer who understands the procedures and processes to offer a seamless transaction. We believe that our residential property solicitors are some of the finest in Essex and London to assist in this somewhat complex area of conveyancing.
Most developers will require buyers to enter into an agreement with them (whilst paying an initial non-refundable deposit). A deadline will then be imposed within which contracts ought to be exchanged. This is commonly 28 days from the period that your lawyer receives the paperwork from the developers. It is therefore essential for you to instruct a specialist solicitor who understands the requirement to deal with this paperwork quickly and efficiently.
When you are in the position of selling your current home and buying a new build property, our conveyancers will liaise with the agents to manage the chain below your sale to ensure every party involved is working to the same deadline, keeping disruption and delays to a minimum.
Over and above the usual considerations when buying a property, new build purchases involve additional details such as:
The developer will usually provide a new home warranty for the property; we will check that the warranty is acceptable to your lender if you are obtaining mortgage finance. Most warranties will protect against the developer going into liquidation and against certain defects arising from structural problems. They will usually also cover the property for a specified period – usually two years from the date of completion, and then a further 8 years for structural defects. We will report to you on the warranty being offered.
Most estate roads on a development are constructed by the developer but are not always adopted by the local authority at the start of a development. We will ascertain the position and ensure there are adequate provisions for access and maintenance over the estate roads.
We will ensure all planning permission and building regulation consents are issued, together with any certificates of completion of work before you move into your new property. If this cannot be done as development is ongoing, we will ensure that the appropriate warranties are provided by the developer. Many new build homes are built as part of a larger development and there are multiple planning agreements to review to ensure any obligations under these agreements which may be passed to you as the new property owner are not onerous or unreasonable.
If the property is not structurally complete when you exchange contracts, you will not be able to agree a fixed completion date. Once the property is wholly built, a notice to complete the purchase is served by the developer’s solicitors to confirm the date for completion. You do not usually have the ability to amend this date once the notice is issued and consideration needs to be given prior to exchange of contracts as to whether your mortgage offer will still be valid at the time the notice is served. We will discuss these points with you before exchange of contracts.
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