How long are the searches taking?

(16 Posts)
StormyLovesOdd Mon 14-Sep-20 18:59:37

We're buying a house, gave our solicitor the money for the local council searches 6 weeks ago but they've still not come back. Our solicitor is blaming Covid, is anyone else having the same problem or is my solicitor crap?

The sellers are so fed up waiting they're threatening to pull out confused

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Jujuball Mon 14-Sep-20 19:09:30

Search timescales differ by area, depending on your local council. In my area at the moment they're taking 4-5 weeks or so due to covid (usually would be about a fortnight).

Your solicitor may not have been able to order them immediately when you paid for them, they'll have needed a plan (provided by the seller's solicitor) which might've arrived after you'd paid. Ask your solicitor if they can obtain an ETA for them.

(I'm a conveyancing solicitor smile)

StormyLovesOdd Mon 14-Sep-20 19:16:41

That's really helpful, thank you. We do live in an area where Covid has been especially bad.

My solicitor just keeps telling me : weeks and the date comes and goes than he tells me another : weeks. I'm so frustrated with it all. He was expecting them back today and again it's not happend

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user1592512579 Mon 14-Sep-20 20:10:19

What Local Authority area are you buying in? I can check some average turnaround times in the morning for you.

There has been delays with both official and personal local searches. A couple of the drainage companies were also struggling because they couldn't compile some reports remotely.

Treacletoots Mon 14-Sep-20 20:22:34

I think your sellers need to chill the f* out. The searches are often the easy part.

We spent weeks nay, months going back and forth with enquiries from the conveyancers who were just taking the piss asking the same questions over and over again, pretending they hadn't received forms that we had their signature for and all sorts of similar nonsense.

It took me writing them a scalding review on Google & Trustpilot for them to sit up and take notice.

Shelley54 Mon 14-Sep-20 20:41:52

Worthwhile saying when the market first re opened in May/June searches were only taking 2-3 weeks. Now there's lots of activity we're all in big queues. It just took 5 weeks for us.

StormyLovesOdd Mon 14-Sep-20 21:24:13

The local authority is Sandwell West Midlands, if you could look for me to see the average wait that would be amazing, thank you.

The people we are buying the house off had their searches done in June and they told me it was all done in a few weeks. I made the mistake of giving the seller my mobile number and I'm getting pressured daily, I get that they want to move, I do too but I don't think there's anything else I can do

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sopopollo Mon 14-Sep-20 21:57:42

Took around two weeks for us. Our solicitor got personal searches, though.

LooseMooseHoose Mon 14-Sep-20 22:04:03

We're in another West Midlands LA and our useless council's current average is 10 fucking weeks.

In 2018 they were "considering" implementing an electronic system for local authority searches. I assume they are still thinking about it.

CatAndHisKit Tue 15-Sep-20 01:42:35

I'm curoius whether these searches are obligatory or can a buyer choose not to do some of the slower ones, especially if the house was bought less than 10yrs by previous owners?

6 wks is a bit slower than average.

YellowNotRed Tue 15-Sep-20 07:29:34


I'm curoius whether these searches are obligatory or can a buyer choose not to do some of the slower ones, especially if the house was bought less than 10yrs by previous owners?

6 wks is a bit slower than average.

Yes you can opt not to have searches and take out indemnity insurance instead which is cheaper and quicker to sort out.

StormyLovesOdd Tue 15-Sep-20 08:46:31

Loose - OMG 10 weeks!!!! That's hideous, how can they take that long. Ours have been 6 weeks so far, I'm waiting for 9:30am so I can ring our solicitor.

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DareDevil223 Tue 15-Sep-20 09:53:22

We had ours back in a couple of weeks, we're in Gloucestershire. I was surprised at how quickly they came back.

StormyLovesOdd Tue 15-Sep-20 16:25:07

Finally some good news - solicitor has confirmed that the searches have come back today. Just the enquiries now and the house is only a few years old so hopefully this part will be easy.

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CatAndHisKit Tue 15-Sep-20 19:48:35

thanks, Yellow. How would the insurance work? Which searches, would you say, aer really worth doing and which can go on insurance, or is it all insured or nothing?

MrsHogwallop Mon 28-Sep-20 20:48:59

Same position here and glad to find this thread - our solicitor is encouraging us to take out the insurance you mention @yellownotred in order to keep to the planned moving date despite delayed local searches. But isn’t this risky? Feels odd to be making such a huge purchase without full knowledge. We are not in a rush but our buyer is in a big hurry.

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