Top Conveyancing Tips for Buying a Repossessed Property

by Tony Lilleystone, Legal Manager
Monday 16th of January 2012 09:19:56 PM

Buying a repossessed house can be a great way to get on the property ladder, or grab an otherwise unaffordable bargain. Although the legal requirements when buying a repossessed property are basically the same as when buying any other, there are some issues that can arise.

The following tips will assist you in avoiding the common pitfalls:

1. Make additional investigations

Since lender will obviously never have occupied the property and consequently will not be able to answer the usual enquiries that would be raised of an owner-occupier, you must rely on further investigations of your own and/or by your Conveyancing Solicitor.

There will be certain things, such as planning permissions, NHBC certificates, building control completion certificates that you will need that will most likely not be held by the lender.

2. Carefully review the contract provisions

Your Conveyancing Solicitor will ensure that the contract is accurate and not too weighted in favour of the lender in possession as some lenders’ Conveyancing Solicitors will attempt to slip in provisions that state that the buyer will be responsible for various costs including the preparation of legal documentation.

3. Verify that the home is vacant

It is advisable that you visit the property prior to completion to check that the property is vacant. This is particularly critical as many properties are boarded up and therefore are susceptible to squatters.

4. Do not rush to exchange contracts

Dont be forced into exchange of contracts before you, your lender and your Conveyancing Solicitors are satisfied with the provisions.  Given the time constraints involved, it is likely that the agents for the lender are going to apply considerable pressure to exchange contracts. 

The above list is by no means comprehensive and it is best to instruct an experienced Conveyancing Solicitor to handle the legal aspects of the transaction on your behalf.

For more information, contact us on 0330 660 0286.