Uzma Saleem is a trainee solicitor at Deo Volente Solicitors.
Whilst completing my final training seat within the property department, I have on many occasions been asked about the Conveyancing process. I have found that whilst there is a general understanding about Conveyancing, there is a lack of knowledge regarding the completion stage.
The most common questions asked are:
What is Completion?
How long does the process take?
When can I move into my property?
The date of completion is one of the most significant dates in any property transaction. It arises when parties to a conveyancing transaction are able to move into their properties once funds have been sent and received between their solicitors.
Irrespective of whether you are acting for the seller or buyer, in a conveyancing transaction there are several matters to determine after Completion. These are commonly referred to as ‘post completion formalities’.
In its simplest form, below is a list of some of the key ‘post completion’ formalities to be completed by solicitors acting for either party in a Conveyancing transaction:
- Estate agent commission is to be paid (if applicable.)
- Mortgage is to be redeemed.
- The transfer (TR1) is sent to the buyer’s solicitor to enable the property to be registered into the respective Buyer’s name.
- Activation of any indemnity policies (i.e. Lack of planning and Building Regulation Indemnity).
- All original title deeds and documents sent to the Buyers solicitors to be forwarded on to the Buyer for safekeeping.
- Discharging the mortgage on the property by submission of form DS1 (If applicable.)
- SDLT (Stamp Duty Land Tax Form) this is to be completed and returned to HMRC within a period of 30 days. HMRC will acknowledge receipt and issue a certificate which is submitted alongside an application for registration.
- Activation of any indemnity policies (i.e. Lack of Planning and Building Regulation Indemnity, Chancel Repair liability.)
- Submission of an application for Registration of Title (Form AP1) – In order for the buyer’s details to be registered on the title deeds it is imperative that an application to HM Land Registry is made.
Time scale for registration
The registration process can be very lengthy. It can take between 6 -12 weeks before the official title is received confirming the new Buyers/Purchasers as the registered owners.