My partner and I are moving house for the first time and we are finding the whole process very confusing. What are the main things we need to concentrate on?
Moving house is very stressful, no matter how experienced you are. Your solicitor will guide you through the transaction and should explain everything to you on the way; however, it pays to be prepared. Here are the main things to watch out for:
Ensure your searches are complete
Your solicitor will normally examine local council, mining and drainage searches before contracts are exchanged to check that nothing is registered against the property with the council and that there has been no mining activity that you should be aware of.
Check the survey
Has a survey been commissioned? If so, you may want to study the findings and follow up any recommendations made by the surveyor.
If any queries have been raised in relation to your contract or title deeds, or any negotiations or amendments are required, these will need to be resolved before exchange can take place.
Fixtures and fittings
Check your list of fixtures and fittings before committing to a purchase and make sure everything you agreed is in your new property when you move in.
If your sale is part of a chain, both the sale and purchase contracts are exchanged simultaneously. All the solicitors involved in the chain will want to make certain that the related transactions are ready so exchange of properties can take place on the same day.
Weekend moving days
This is important to check as you may need the services of companies that only operate on week days, such as removal firms. When booking your removal firm, don't forget to tell them about any items that may need special care.
Be prepared at least one week in advance
Don’t leave everything to the last minute! You'll be amazed at the amount of unexpected events that take place on moving day so make sure you get as much completed as possible before you go. Pack at least a week in advance, make arrangements for pets and have extra boxes ready for unexpected items.
Don't forget anything
It sounds obvious, but make sure you have all your essentials close to hand, such as a torch, candles, basic toolkit, bedding, a change of clothes, enough food and drink to keep you (and the removal men!) going and, of course, the essential celebratory bottle!