Your questions answered
If you’re hoping to complete your property transaction in the next few weeks, you may now be feeling worried and uncertain. During this difficult time, government advice is changing daily, but please be assured that here at Advancing Property we are staying up to date and monitoring the situation regularly.
At the time of writing, government advice for those who are about to or have already exchanged contracts and are due to complete is to delay moving where possible.
Current government advice developed with Public Health England on house moves states:
“Given the situation in the UK with regard to the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19), we urge parties involved in home moving to adapt and be flexible to alter their usual processes.
“There is no need to pull out of transactions, but we all need to ensure we are following guidance to stay at home and away from others at all times, including the specific measures for those who are presenting symptoms, self-isolating or shielding. Prioritising the health of individuals and the public must be the priority.
“Where the property being moved into is vacant, then you can continue with this transaction although you should follow the guidance on home removals.
“Where the property is currently occupied, we encourage all parties to do all they can to amicably agree alternative dates to move, for a time when it is likely that stay-at-home measures against coronavirus (COVID-19) will no longer be in place.”
Understandably this leaves many vendors in an uncertain state of limbo and Advancing Property want to reassure you that we will do our utmost to update you whenever we can. In the meantime, you should keep in regular contact with your conveyancer.
Our current advice is as follows:
1.The government has advised that only keyworkers should attend their places of work, and travel should be restricted to essential trips. Currently, moving home is not an essential trip and removal firms have been advised not to open.
2.If you have exchanged contracts, are due to complete imminently and are moving your belongings without the aid of family/friends/removal firms, proceed with caution, relocate in as few trips as possible and follow all social distancing and hand-washing rules. It is advisable to deep clean the property when you move in.
3.If possible, all transactions that have not already exchanged should be delayed until restrictions are lifted.
4.If exchange has taken place but completion does not happen due to COVID-19, then your conveyancer should speak with all parties who should then work together to reach a reasonable agreement regarding any delay. You are in a legally binding contract and are committed to complete the transaction but the delay can be written into the contract.
Your conveyancer is likely to advise you to find a compromise in order to move forward. This may involve delaying completion for several weeks. In this case, we suggest you speak with your removal company as soon as possible to secure availability.
Given these uncertain times and unprecedented conditions, it is important that lines of communication remain open between all parties at all times.
If you have a particular concern please speak with us on 01234 268064 email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us on social media. We are available through all these channels throughout lockdown and will do our utmost to assist you. Please stay safe.