|The moment we moved into our 1st house|
Because it was a long term commitment, we were prepared to wait and work through the long process of moving house... and for us, it was a fairly long time! This is the second house that we have owned as a family, therefore when we moved house, there was always going to be a chain - here is how our home moving timeline panned out.
#1 Sell the house
This was the easy bit. Ten days on the market and we had an offer we were happy to accept.
#2 Find the home of your dreams
Also easy. We had been driving the local streets for months looking for the perfect place and we were ready and waiting to make an offer on our intended home within 24 hours of finding a buyer for our own place. All going to plan. The very first thing that the sellers asked was for proof that we could get a mortgage for the house (an indicator to them that the sale would go through).
#3 Get a mortgage quote
Still easy. We had made a couple of appointments with mortgage advisors earlier in the year (one independent, one linked to a local bank branch. We did plenty of research and knew where we wanted to apply. Within a few hours of having made an offer on a house, we had submitted an application for a mortgage and had a piece of paper to prove that we were going to have a mortgage approved to the value of our house.
#4 Find a solicitor
For us, still very easy. We have a family solicitor who we had used for issuing a will in advance. After having bought two houses, I would strongly recommend finding a solicitor local to you that you can go in to visit, and take your documents to them rather than having to rely on the phone and postal service (in my experience, this is what makes for a looooooong house purchase)
#5 Arrange a surveyor
Theoretically, simple. Most mortgage providers will recommend (or require use of a specific) conveyancing surveyor. After having had some issues come out of the woodwork (literally) in our last house purchase, we paid for a thorough house survey during our most recent house move. The survey will detail the state of the building and any threats that may impact the decision made by your mortgage provider.
#6 Agree on the details
Fixtures and fittings... that kind of thing. Why don't people ever list the random pile of junk they plan to leave in the loft?
#7 Transfer the deposit
Your solicitor should be able to manage this for you
#8 Exchange contracts and agree a completion date
The tricky bit. This, dear readers, is where you are entirely in the hands of other people's solicitors. Contracts can't be exchanged until after all of the 'searches' on land registry and council lists are complete. Chasing these can be stressful. At this point you will be very glad to have spent money on a solicitor who is worth their fee! Your mortgage company will communicate with your solicitor to handle all of the funds for the big day.
#9 Book a removals expert
This time around, we had too much STUFF to be able to move house unaided. We got lots of recommendations from friends for a local removals company who were awesome from the very moment they entered our house to start packing, to the minute they tucked us into our new house.
#10 Completion Day
For many people, the entire process of moving house from offer, through mortgage application to completion can take as little as a month. For us, it took 6 months... most of which was spent at stage 8. Sigh.
But it was worth it. We love our house and each year we make it just a little bit more "us".
Disclosure: This post has been created in partnership with TSB