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Stupid question about completion and moving out....durrrrr!

(49 Posts)
ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:28:12

Ok this is a dumb question but I can't figure it out.

Say you've bid on a house and paid your 10% deposit. Meanwhile someone buys yours and gives you a 10% deposit too. Happy days.

You ask for 6 weeks to move out. So...you don't get the remaining 90% until the last day of that 6 week period, right? Till you're walking out the door leaving the keys behind?

Cos if that's the case does that mean you have to wait till that day to pass YOUR 90% onto the vendors of the house your buying? Like, you can't get those keys till you're literally homeless?

How do people do it? There has to be a less stressful last minute way!

I have visions of us waiting in a car with a removal van behind us, waiting for the cheque to clear, not knowing where we're spending the night!

LooksLikeImStuckHere Sat 01-Jul-17 12:30:42

The deposit doesn't really go. Because it's usually tied up in a house, it all gets transferred on the moving day. So you won't get the 10% deposit from your buyer on the day you exchange (well, that very rarely happens) and you won't give your 10% either. It all goes on completion day and the solicitors handle it all.

AlbusPercival Sat 01-Jul-17 12:31:01

Umm yes that is exactly how it works

OdinsLoveChild Sat 01-Jul-17 12:31:09

Payments are usually electronically not by cheque. They generally all go through at the same time together on the same day.

You may be charged a fee for electronic transfer of funds. I have no idea why though as it takes me seconds to fill in the box online and press 'send'. Certainly not worth the £25+VAT I was charged last year.

Lovegaultier Sat 01-Jul-17 12:34:26

I have done exactly what you describe. Sitting in a removal van with a child and a dog waiting for all the funds to clear and the vendors sitting in the garden waiting for the ok to pass the keys over.

RelaxMax Sat 01-Jul-17 12:34:44

You don't actually get the ten percent until you've completed: it will be held by solicitors until then.

And yes on the day of completion each house in the chain has to complete in the right order, the money moves up the chain and you get the keys to your new house when your money has been paid over.

It can be very stressful.

Also it's very unusual to have 6 weeks between exchange and completion, one week is normal.

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:35:36

Fuck me, that's a very stressful way of doing things.

You hear stories of turning up at the new house and the vendors haven't moved out yet....I was hoping there would be some way of staggering it so you're not relying on the vendors being moved out when you've nowhere else organised to stay!

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:36:57

And yes, understand the 10% is in the solicitors account.

Lovegaultier Sat 01-Jul-17 12:38:39

I am seriously considering buying a new property to avoid being in a chain as I can't bear the stress of it.

Tiredstressed Sat 01-Jul-17 12:39:22

It all has to happen on the same day so no one is left inadvertently with two houses or no house. But yes, it is very stressful.

CrazyHairSister Sat 01-Jul-17 12:41:07

The whole chain has to agree to the same exchange date and the same completion date, so yes the deposit usually passes it's way up the chain. Usually there is a mortgage or two involved so the solicitor draws down the mortgage funds on exchange and then on the day of completion the money passes up from the bottom of the chain with mortgages being added in.

I am a PA for the director of an Estate Agent and before now have had to do a mad dash to deliver keys to people sitting outside houses with all their worldly goods in a removal lorry at 5pm at night worried that they wouldn't complete that day.

eurochick Sat 01-Jul-17 12:42:37

The money moves up the chain, so if you are near the bottom (first time buyer is buying your house) the money should clear early in the day. If you're nearer the top of the chain it can get a bit fraught! I've had one move where they money went "missing" in the system for a few hours. We were sitting outside our new house waiting for the money to clear. We had just made arrangements for overnight storage of our stuff when the money was released at 5pm so we then had a mad panic to get in.

CrazyHairSister Sat 01-Jul-17 12:43:25

In 4 years I have only known one sale not to complete on the expected day because the solicitor went home sick and no-one else could access the file.

There are penalties written in to the contract if you don't complete on the planned day.

busyboysmum Sat 01-Jul-17 12:45:43

The longer the chain the more complicated things get.

How else could things be done though?

SingaSong12 Sat 01-Jul-17 12:45:45

Yes - that's why sellers like cash buyers and first time buyers - there isn't a chain - the seller knows the money will be there directly or because buyer will have mortgage arranged.

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:47:17

So how on earth do you coordinate completion days to be on the same day? The mind boggles at the logistics of it all.

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:50:35

eurochick that is my nightmare. With no family to take the kids we would literally have the kids in the car with us the whole time doing their nut. shock

busyboysmum Sat 01-Jul-17 12:51:02

It's the hardest part of my job. Trying to get everyone to agree a date and getting the contracts exchanged with enough time inbetween exchange and completion for everyone to book their removal vans.

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 12:53:37

It's enough to put you off, it really is!

We're selling at auction very soon so we will have no idea/control over our buyer. Though they'll surely be a cash buyer if they're buying at auction. You have to put 10% down literally within the hour.

So hopefully that could mean we're at the bottom of the chain.

shortgreengiraffe Sat 01-Jul-17 12:56:37

Elspeth everyone in the chain has to agree on a completion day.

shortgreengiraffe Sat 01-Jul-17 13:00:01

Elspeth, no if you are selling your house at auction then the person who buys it shouldn't be in a chain at all because they would normally be committed to 10% on the day and then exchange/completion within a set timeframe. If they were in a chain they couldn't commit to that and so would risk losing their 10% deposit.

It also means that you can't stay in your house until you've found somewhere else to buy - on the day your house is officially sold and you have the money for it (completion) you will need to be out and living somewhere else.

ElspethFlashman Sat 01-Jul-17 13:02:44

Ok. God, a lot of back and forth I imagine.

My EA told me to ask for as long as possible from my buyer. I guess this is why. To pass on that time to the vendor of the house I'm buying so they in turn have enough time to make other arrangements.

I've seen stories here of people in a 7 house chain. I think I'd go on the drink, trying to get 7 families to agree on the same day!

ExcuseMyEyebrows Sat 01-Jul-17 13:05:09

How else could things be done though?

This is how the English system works. It's different in other countries, eg Scotland, where there aren't 'chains' of buyers and sellers - each transaction is a separate one.

SummerKelly Sat 01-Jul-17 13:08:44

The solicitors and estate agents (depending on how involved they are) help to facilitate it all though so it's not as bad as it sounds. I find the exchange more fraught, then once that's happened you know everything has been lined up and I've never been worried that things will go wrong (I've done 5 house moves and they've all been fine).

MillieMoodle Sat 01-Jul-17 13:15:17

Elspeth if you're selling at auction then as soon as the gavel falls you will have exchanged contracts on your sale. The usual completion date is 28 days later but you will need to check the special conditions in the contract. As the seller you can ask your solicitor to make provision in the contract for a longer gap between exchange and completion, but they will need to draft the contract this way so make sure you discuss it with them well before the auction.

You will also have to move out on the completion date, whether you have somewhere else to move to or not. Bear in mind that even if you find somewhere to buy, there is no guarantee AT ALL that the seller of that property will agree to the same completion date that you have on your sale.

Once contracts are exchanged, this is the point that the transaction becomes legally binding and a completion date is usually fixed. Either party can walk away before that with no repercussions.

To a PP who was thinking of buying a new build to avoid conveyancing stress - bear in mind that builders usually insist on exchange within 21 or (at a push) 28 days, with completion usually on 10 days notice, sometimes months later. So whilst it avoids the stress of a chain, it can still be extremely stressful with the builders putting pressure on you and a very short timescale.

There is no part of conveyancing which isn't stressful!

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