What Documents do you need to sell a house?
Selling your property can be a stressful endeavor. Finding an experienced real estate agent, refreshing up your home to add value to your property, and scheduling open houses are among the many considerations that must be made. There are documents you need to sell your home which need to be submitted. Some of these are fairly straightforward, while others are a bit more complicated.
Evidence of your identity
If you want to sell a house, you must be able to supply your solicitor with a piece of identification to prove your identity. This is typically evidence of your present residence, such as a most recent utility receipt, in addition to a photo ID (such as a passport or driver’s licence). Additional paperwork may be accepted; verify beforehand with your attorney or conveyancer.
This identification document is required to comply with anti-money laundering laws. The rules stipulate that solicitors, conveyancers and real estate agents are required to retain evidence for five years. The records are destroyed following this period, so your information will not be kept eternally.
Deeds of conveyance
You need to provide evidence that you own the property in order to sell a property. You might or might not have the title deeds for your property; if you cannot find them, don’t worry; you can likely obtain a copy from the solicitor you used when you first applied for a mortgage or purchased your home. In addition, your present solicitor will have to obtain official deeds from the Land Registry, so this shouldn’t pose a problem.
If your property has not been sold since 1990, when property registration in England and Wales became mandatory, the Land Registry is unlikely to have a copy of the deeds (unless you proactively registered it). This implies that you are going to find those actions from your side. In some instances, they may be with the lender of your mortgage or your attorney; therefore, contact both parties as quickly as possible to determine where they are.
If you are unable to find the deeds at all required to sell, you must submit to the Land Registry for a “Title Absolute.” It includes establishing that you are the legal proprietor of your home and have the right to the freehold and structures on the property in question. You will also need to demonstrate possession for a continuous period of 15 years; if you’re unable to do so, you might want to reach out to the Land Registry as soon as possible for assistance with the next steps.
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Documents do I need for shared tenure
If the property you own retains a portion of the freehold, documentation pertaining to the property structure will also be required. Similarly, if your property is leasehold, you will need to obtain a copy of the lease and complete a seller’s leasehold information form.
The retrieval of leasehold information may take several days or weeks, as it is largely out of your control and depends on the management company or landlord’s efficiency. Therefore, it is always advisable to inform the individual responsible for tenure details well in preparation to avoid potential delays at this stage.
What certificate do I need to sell a house?
When reselling a home, the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) needs to be included. This document is a review of your home’s energy consumption and CO2 impact, replete with a rating from G (least efficient) to A (most efficient). If your EPC is older than 10 years, you will need to acquire a new one from an authorised assessor. This can typically be arranged by your real estate agent (see our introduction to EPC costs for more information).
If you’re in Scotland, you’ll need a Home Report, that must have been generated within the past 10 weeks in order to be accepted. The sole exceptions to this rule are:
a) if your home has been continually marketed since the last legitimate one was issued
b) if it’s an entirely fresh construction or conversion that hasn’t been occupied since it was constructed or converted.
What management documents do you need?
If you pay service charges or own a leasehold property, you may also be obliged to request a Management Information Pack (which is also referred to as a Leasehold Information Pack) if you want to sell your house. You or your solicitor may arrange for this through the freeholder or managing agent; however, as with most aspects of this procedure, speed is of the essence, and it’s best to do this as soon as possible, as it can take some time for the list of documents to be processed and sent out.
If you have been living in a tenancy for a period of time exceeding two years, it may be worthwhile to extend it, as doing so could substantially increase the property sale. For instance, leaseholds with fewer than 80 years remaining may be worth significantly less than those with fewer than 85 years remaining, as landowners can charge extra for the increase in property value that an extension confers (a marriage fee). Additionally, many mortgages do not cover shorter leaseholds, so be sure to verify this.
Comprise fixtures and contents
The TA10 fittings and contents form specifies precisely what will be included in the purchase of your property, including outbuildings, furniture, and ornaments. This additional documents list you need to show might include your garage, shed, plants, and trees, as well as any indoor items you include to sweeten the bargain. Both you and a prospective buyer should need to ensure exactly what is included in the cost of the home as this will prevent delays down the line while decreasing the risk of the buyer bailing out.
Property information form you need to sell your house
The real estate information form, or TA6 as it also goes by, is a comprehensive examination of the current condition and form of your residence. Ensure that you have duplicates of every item on the list, as all essential documents listed on this form must be submitted. For replacement windows, this could involve a Buildings Regulations approval or a Fensa Certificate. The following are covered by the TA6 form:
Boundaries – who is accountable for maintaining any hedges and fencing, and where the property lines are. Complaints are any ongoing conflicts with residents.
Proposals are notices regarding additional development in the region. There may be letters from the local government or from neighbours.
Planning – this encompasses any completed or ongoing renovations and construction projects. For example, the installation of new windows on an extension.
Warranty coverage includes any existing guarantees or warranties on the building, such as solar panels.
Insurance – Include an estimate of the amount it would cost for insurance on your property as well as any discrepancies. Environmental concerns include any flooding dangers and your Energy Performance Certificate.
Do you have a driveway or a garage for storing at your residence? The following section covers all matters pertaining to parking.
Services – Take note of the condition of your home’s services, including the boiler, heating, and electrical infrastructure included in the sale.
Occupants – Indicate whether there are current tenants residing in the property and whether they will stay after you sell a home.
Connections to utilities – this section describes the location of water, electricity and gas metres on your property.
This pertains to lease costs if your property is leasehold as well as other expenses, such as maintenance fees for flats or a gated property.
This area is for information regarding relocation dates, special moving requirements, and whether or not you intend to buy another property.
The majority of this data is provided by local authorities, but as you may have guessed by now, the time it takes to obtain the information varies considerably from 24 hours to one month, so be as diligent and prompt as possible on your end to avoid delays if you want to sell your home quickly. As more and more local governments adopt automated searches, this period of time should decrease significantly.
You will provide a present mortgage need to be provided if you are thinking of selling, including account information and the amount you still owe. You also need a copy and information about any additional loans or charges associated with your home.
Typically, these fees will be mentioned on the title deeds. If you have outstanding charges from your previous mortgage lender, you must contact them to have them removed.
You will be required to execute an undertaking if there are any outstanding payments. This is basically a pledge that you’ll use the proceeds from the sale to pay off the mortgage and that the buyer will have no mortgage-related liability. Without the agreement, the vendor may become responsible for the remaining balance on the property.
After agreeing to the transaction with a buyer, your attorney or conveyancer will draft an agreement stating your acceptance of the offer.
You will also be asked to execute a Transfer of Deeds which is required when you sell. This will also be supervised by your legal counsel, and contracts must be swapped with the purchaser. The contract will specify the sale price, the date and time the transaction will close, and any legal constraints.
After the exchange of signed contracts, the transaction becomes legally binding. This indicates that if one party withdraws, monetary compensation is likely to be required. It also means it’s time to celebrate, as you have successfully navigated the potentially tedious documentation and have now formally sold your property.
In conclusion, if the value of your property exceeds a certain threshold, you may also need substantiation of stamp duty from your attorney. Typically, this occurs within thirty days of the completion date.