Getting Your Documents Signed during the Home Buying Process

 

It is very important to make sure that all relevant documents are signed in good time before exchange of contracts. Some can wait until after exchange of contracts but it is bet to get as many signed as quickly as possible. It is all too often the case that this is left until the last minute and that matters are delayed as a result.

The documents that you will need to sign when buying a home are as follows:

Contract


The contract is signed by the parties before exchange of contracts and is passed to their solicitor to undertake a telephone exchange of contracts. This is usual practice. The contract does not come into effect until contracts are formally exchanged by the solicitors so just by signing the contract, it does not mean that you have automatically become committed to the purchase. Every buyer must sign the Contract.   The contract can be signed by a solicitor if you give them written authority to do so. If you believe you will be unable to sign the contract for some reason, you should check with your solicitor to see if they would be willing to sign on your behalf.

 

Mortgage Deed


The Mortgage Deed is a legal document giving the lender a legal interest in the property.   By signing the mortgage deed the Borrower consents to the loan being secured against the Property for the duration of the Mortgage term and agrees to the Mortgage Conditions. The Mortgage Deed is registered with Land Registry after completion of the purchase along with the Buyer’s application to amend the ownership records held at Land Registry.

 

Stamp Duty Land Tax Form


This form is usually completed by the Buyer’s Conveyancer. It is sent to Inland Revenue after the purchase completes along with payment of the buyer’s stamp duty land tax.   This form is not actually needed until after completion has taken place but it is good practice to have it completed and signed along with the other documents to save it being overlooked.

 

Transfer Deed

 

The Transfer Deed is a very important document. It is usually drafted by the Buyer’s Solicitor and sent to the Seller’s conveyancer for approval on exchange of contracts.   This document transfers legal ownership of the property from the Seller to the Buyer and it must be sent to Land Registry for them to change ownership details in the Land Registry Register. It should be noted that when signing the Transfer you will need to have your signature witnessed by an independent adult. This does not need to be a solicitor. Buyers do not always have to sign the Transfer (along with the Seller) for example, where there are no additional provisions stated in the Transfer, however, it is good practice for both parties to sign. In all cases, the Seller must sign.