Buying through VIKINGS

Whether you are a first-time buyer or experienced homeowner, our buyers guide is designed to offer you helpful advice and information regarding what to expect throughout the buying process. We hope you find this useful.

If you require finance to fund your purchase, it is essential before commencing your search to establish how much you can borrow. Speak to an independent mortgage advisor to get a clear understanding of your finances. You need to be 100% sure what lenders are prepared to offer you and what you are able repay.

VIKINGS works in partnership with Wolsey Mortgage Company, a local independent firm providing the latest mortgage advice and packages.

When making an offer on a property, you will need to obtain a Mortgage Agreement in Principle (AIP), which will confirm the amount you are able to borrow for your purchase and enable you to proceed with a sale.

Consider other costs associated with buying a property and ensure you have enough funds to cover the following: mortgage arrangement fees, survey costs, legal fees, stamp duty, insurance and moving expenses. 

Decide on your property requirements (e.g. number of bedrooms, parking, garden, location etc.) and the price bracket which is comfortable for you. Think about your priorities for the property and on what you might be willing to compromise.

At VIKINGS we listen to what our buyers are looking for in a property and our negotiators hand-pick properties that only meet our buyers’ criteria, giving us a better chance in matching the right buyer to the right property. We are happy to take registrations by phone, email, in person, or at our office.

Be ready and available to view.  We understand everyone has busy schedules but we would never want you to miss out on your ideal property.

Do not judge a property purely on its online listing; arrange a viewing, as the property may be more appealing once inside.  If you are still interested following your viewing it may be beneficial to revisit the area and research local amenities.

If you are showing a serious interest in a property, let us know as soon as possible, as properties can sell very quickly and we wouldn’t want you to miss out!

Once you have decided on the property you wish to buy, you will need to make a formal offer. This can be done via a member of our sales team either verbally (over the phone or in person) or in writing.  We will then relay your offer to the seller for their consideration.  We may need to negotiate with you to reach an acceptable sale price for both parties.

Once VIKINGS has agreed the sale, this will be confirmed in writing and you will be asked to provide us with your AIP (if applicable) along with proof of your identity. 

At this point it is also advisable to contact your mortgage adviser to commence your full mortgage application.

You will need to appoint a solicitor or conveyancer to handle the legal aspect of your purchase.  Ask family and friends for recommendations and don’t make your choice based on price alone. Typical legal costs for purchasing a property can range from £800 – £1500 plus VAT.  You will need to pay a deposit or search fees up front relating to the property, which can average £250-£300.

We would strongly advise using a firm that has local knowledge.  With that said, our role is to ensure we take as much of the stress out of the buying process and will work with whomever you chose to appoint – after all, it’s your purchase.

VIKINGS works closely with a number of local Solicitors.  We would, therefore, be only too pleased to recommend a trusted solicitor to assist you with your purchase.

Once you and the seller have confirmed your legal representatives we will issue a written ‘Memorandum of Sale’ to both parties’ solicitors.

Your mortgage lender, if you have one, will arrange a survey of the property to ensure that the price you are offering is realistic for their loan to you. This will usually be a valuation report, but you can often upgrade to a Homebuyer’s Report, which gives more detail on the condition of the property – usually at an added cost.

Alternatively, you may wish to obtain your own private building/structural survey, which can typically cost £400-£1500 depending on the level of survey, size and value of the property. VIKINGS works with a local trusted surveyor and would be happy to obtain a quote on your behalf.

Please bear in mind that the survey is a document that will point out the property’s tiniest defects and flaws. These are often not of any significance but can come as quite a shock!

If you would like VIKINGS to go through the survey with you in our office we would be happy to offer our knowledge and experience relating to any potential observations that have been raised in the report.

Our dedicated staff work hard to provide a service that makes the entire process as simple and efficient as possible for all parties concerned, ensuring we liaise with all estate agencies and solicitors involved in your chain. It is important that you maintain open communication with us and your solicitor to ensure the process runs as smoothly as possible so we can quickly overcome any issues that may arise.

Consider how you intend to move your furniture and belongings: do you need to book a removals company?

Start exploring buildings insurance, as it’s often a requirement of the mortgage company that this is in place from exchange of contracts.  Use comparison sites if you can to secure the best insurance cover for your situation and property.

As you get closer to exchange of contracts all parties will start to discuss and agree possible completion dates. This is the date that your purchase transaction will be completed and you will take ownership of the property.

Your solicitor will ensure that the necessary searches, mortgage offer and any other queries have been satisfied and report their findings to you.

You will receive a legally binding contract to sign from your solicitor in order to exchange and complete the sale and will be asked to send over your deposit (usually 10%) to your solicitor in readiness for the completion date.

The act of ‘exchange of contracts’ is literally that; your solicitor will swap signed contracts, deal with the deposit, request mortgage funds and set the completion date, which is usually approximately seven days after exchange – this can vary depending on circumstances and the chain involved.

On the day of completion, it is etiquette to be prepared to vacate the property you are selling around midday in preparation for the solicitor carrying out completion. As a buyer you have to allow time for the chain to work its way through completion one property at a time, so expect to obtain the keys to your new property in the afternoon.

‘Completion’ is the day on which the balance of money is transferred to the seller via the solicitors. Once the funds have cleared, VIKINGS is reliant on the seller’s solicitor to advise us as to when we are able to release the keys. At this stage the sale is complete, and you are the proud owner of your new home!