Kingfishers specialist property lawyers

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The Kingfishers Guide To Moving House

The Start of Your Sale

Contact us as soon as you are
  • proposing to put your property on the market with an estate agent
  • or when a buyer has been found
  • or you are optimistic that an offer will shortly be made

Kingfishers will commence your property sale

  • We will review the proposed agreement with your Estate Agent to ensure that you fully understand its legal implications and to negotiate any changes on your behalf.
  • We will apply for the title deeds from the lender, to ensure that there is no delay in issuing a contract once negotiations have been finalised
  • We will give you a breakdown of the costs involved
  • You can complete a Sale Questionnaire and Fixtures and Fittings List to enable us to issue the contract promptly
The sale process will usually follow these steps
  1. A draft contract will be issued to the buyers lawyers, together with all the necessary supporting documents.
  2. When the contract has been approved, we will ask you to sign this in readiness for exchange of contracts.
  3. When the buyers have received their local search and mortgage offer and their lawyer is satisfied as to the title, we will negotiate a completion date which will not normally be less than 10 working days from exchange, and the deposit. Contracts can then be exchanged.
  4. On the day of completion, you must clear and vacate the property by 12 noon, leaving the keys with the Estate Agents.
  5. We will redeem your existing mortgage and settle the Estate Agents account

The Purchase of Your New Home

Your Deposit
When you have agreed to purchase a property, the Estate Agent will normally require you to pay a deposit.
If this happens, an allowance will be made for this at completion. Please let us know if you have paid such a deposit.
When you let us know you have found the home of your dreams, we will ask you to complete a Purchase Questionnaire, the answers to which will assist us in our enquiries.
We will also ask you for money on account, so that we can carry out the preliminary searches.

When we receive the contract from the seller's lawyer,
we will:-
(a) Approve the contract and title. We may feel it necessary to raise additional enquiries of the sellers’ lawyer. When we are satisfied that all is in order, we will return one copy of the contract to the sellers’ lawyers, for signature in readiness for exchange of contracts
(b) On receipt of your mortgage offer, (if applicable), we will apply for the Local Search, and any other searches we consider appropriate.

If you require a mortgage, the offer has to be received from the Lender before exchange of contracts.
If you are arranging any new endowment or life policies, acceptance of risk must be received from the insurance company before exchange of contracts. You may also need to have available Buildings Insurance. We can arrange a quote if required.
When we have received the local search and offer of mortgage and have satisfied ourselves as to the title, we will report to you and ask you to sign the contract and mortgage deed. We will also ask you for the deposit to be used on exchange of contracts.
If you have a related sale, we will usually be able to arrange that the deposit received from your buyers is used for your purchase and passed up the chain.


At this stage, we are ready to arrange an exchange of contracts once a completion date has been agreed. It is at this stage, that stress levels rise! However, we are here to take the strain.
The majority of people buying and selling are involved in A CHAIN! This means that there is a linked series of transactions and EVERYBODY wants to sell and buy on the same day so that they do not have to pay for bridging finance or rented accommodation.
We therefore have to wait until all parties in the chain have:- (a) A mortgage (b) A local search (c) Title approved (d) Agreed a completion date (which is not normally less than ten working days from exchange) We will liaise with the Estate Agents, and other lawyers until the exchange has been achieved.
When exchange has taken place, the completion date is legally binding and you can now swing into action and organise your move.

Moving Checklist

The following are just a few reminders of the things you must deal with
  • Arrange contents and buildings insurance (we can provide a quote for this)
  • Contact Gas, Electricity, Water and Telephone Services, Arrange for meters to be read and accounts to be transferred
  • Book the removal van
  • Cancel Bankers Order for Mortgage payments, after exchange of contracts
  • Notify Local Authority of move and arrange apportioned account for council tax
  • Notify all insurance companies premium bonds office employer Accountant dentist and doctor schools church clubs banks building societies DVLC and Tax Office relatives and friends
  • Arrange for friends to look after the children and pets on moving day!
  • Arrange for mail to be re-directed


1. We will let you have a statement showing all the costs and disbursements due and will draw this up as soon as possible so that you can arrange to let us have the balance four days before completion.
2. On completion day, if you have a sale, we must wait for the buyers lawyer to send us the sale money by telegraphic transfer before we can send out the money by the same method on your purchase. This means that it is unlikely that you will get the keys to your new house before lunch time on the day of completion.
We suggest that you do not leave your old house, before you have checked with us that it is in order for you to do so. If you just have a purchase, we can usually send the money quite early on the morning of completion, but you are unlikely to get the keys before midday as you must allow the seller time to vacate the property.
FINALLY We hope this guide will be of some assistance and remove some of the uncertainty associated with moving house. © Kingfishers, Licensed Conveyancers, Maidenhead, Berkshire


"The level of service and advice given was extremely high and overall provided excellent value for money" Chris Leach

"Thankyou for the professional way in which you helped move into our new business premises. While many aspects of the move have been stressful and difficult you have calmly ensured that the conveyancing aspect of the move was very smooth. We will definitely be coming to Kingfishers when we move house. Ken Jones, Howards Blinds Ltd

"An excellent decision - the service was prompt, efficient and friendly. I was kept informed at every stage of the proceedings and a potential problem was swiftly dealt with. Thank you Kingfishers for a thoroughly professional but totally individual service."Maureen Winders, Chesham, Bucks.