Whether you are buying your first home, or you are a seasoned mover, getting the right advice and support during the moving process can be priceless. The process can be different dependent on your circumstance as a buyer; below we have listed key stages of the buying process for those requiring a mortgage, although most of the steps are relevant to cash buyers also.

Below is guidance of what to expect, once you have found a property and had your offer accepted by the owners: Throughout this process if you are using Snapes, we will be guiding you through each step.

1. APPLY FOR MORTGAGE - You will need to formally apply for the mortgage now you have a purchase price and property in mind. Make sure you have had independent advice though as not doing so could cost you thousands over the duration of the mortgage. Would you like to make sure you have the best deal? We can help!

2. CHOOSE A SOLICITOR - You will need to instruct a solicitor, however at this point, it is worth asking your mortgage broker/bank or building society if there are any free solicitor deals included in your mortgage product, as free legal services are often a feature of some mortgage deals. Need a hand choosing a solicitor? We can help!

3. GET A SURVEY DONE - You will be required to get a survey done on the property, as a condition of the mortgage. Ask your mortgage adviser/bank or building society if you have to do one using their surveyors and ask what type of survey they will require. There are 3 types of survey, a basic valuation, home buyers report with valuation and structural survey. Most free surveys are basic valuations, so be sure you are getting the one you need.

4. INSTRUCT YOUR SOLICITOR - Now you have chosen your solicitor and the mortgage application is underway, you will need to instruct your solicitor to start work on your file, this may require you paying some money to the solicitor for things they have to do for you to ensure your purchase is legally sound with no unexpected nasty surprises.

5. CHASE THE SURVEY - The surveyor you or your bank chooses will have contacted the estate agent and arranged an appointment to inspect the property. Once the appointment has taken place, dependent on survey type you should receive a copy of the survey results within 7 to 10 working days. On receipt of this, you should talk to your solicitor and or mortgage broker for advice on what to do next, if there are any concerns with the findings.

6. FORMAL MORTGAGE OFFER - Once the bank or building society have had confirmation the survey is ok, they will issue a formal mortgage offer, saying the money is now available subject to final checks and your solicitor will get a copy of this so they are aware the money you are borrowing is available. It is possible reports are required on the property as a result of the survey results before a mortgage offer will be issued.

7. CHASE THE SOLICITOR - The solicitor will now proceed with local searches (if they have not already) and be checking the paperwork sent to them from the seller's solicitor to ensure all the legal requirements are in order and there are no local issues which may affect your ownership of the property. These checks can take between 3 to 4 weeks to be completed and may have been started prior to the mortgage offer being received, however many solicitors will want to ensure the mortgage offer is in, before they spend your money on legal matters, as these are usually non-refundable. The communication between solicitors can now take some time dependent on the complexity of the property and situation of buyers and sellers. Your estate agent should be guiding you through this process.

8. DEPOSIT TO SOLICITOR - Your solicitor will soon be asking for your deposit monies to be transferred to them, the deposit money and the amount on your mortgage offer, should equal the money being paid for the property. 5% to 10% is usually required to exchange contracts. They may also at this point, ask for funds to pay any stamp duty applicable and/or any other fees required to complete the transaction. It may be this money is not readily available as it is coming from the proceeds of the sale of your home, if this is the case, then your solicitor will advise you how this will happen.

9. EXCHANGE CONTRACTS - Once the solicitor is happy with all the information they have from the seller's solicitor, they will invite you in to go through the contracts and at this point request you sign your side of the contract in readiness for exchange. Assuming everything is ok and all other parts of any chain (if applicable) are also ready, contracts will be exchanged with a date agreed for completion.

10. BETWEEN EXCHANGE & COMPLETION - Your solicitor during this time will have various legal checks to carry out and you should now be able to order phone lines, broadband and book removal vans etc. as on legal exchange of contracts it is highly unlikely and rare the contract does not complete.

11. COMPLETION - On completion (Moving Day) you will not be able to collect the key for your new home until the seller’s solicitor confirms they have received the money from your solicitor. This usually happens between 11am and 3pm. Note it is not when your solicitor sends the money, but when the sellers solicitor receives the money that completion takes place, so call the estate agent before turning up for keys.

12. COLLECTING THE KEYS - The estate agent will contact you once point 11 (above) has happened to say you can come and collect the keys to your new home!

13. NOW YOU ARE IN - When you first get to your new home, as exciting as it is, we advise you read the meters for gas, electricity and water if applicable and notify your chosen energy suppliers what the readings are and perhaps take a picture to ensure you have proof until your first bill arrives, remembering to do this when you first go in, will make dealing with any future issues so much easier.

The above is for guidance and does not cover all the complex matters involved in purchasing a property. Your solicitor and estate agent should be working together to ensure a smooth transaction at what should be an exciting time. If you have any questions, even if you are not buying or selling through Snapes, please feel free to contact us and we would be delighted to assist if we can.

34 testimonials found.

I wanted to let you know how great the staff at the Hazel Grove branch have been. From viewings to the final days of our sale they have been amazing. Hilary in particular has been extremely helpful chasing solicitors, lenders etc. Her communication was fab, always keeping us updated with where our buyers were at.

Laura Hulse

Posted on Monday, July 24, 2017

My fiancee and I recently purchased our first home together and just wanted to say how much of a help Hilary Clode was with the whole process.

She was always on hand to answer our questions, despite how tedious they may have appeared. Hilary managed to help us keep very calm about the whole process and was very helpful when it came to agreeing dates.

Just wanted to pass on our regards for a great service and want to thank Hilary for a superb service.

We're not planning on moving again any time soon, but I would highly recommend you to anyone that is.

Thanks again

Jonny Brown

Posted on Thursday, July 20, 2017

I would like to thank Jane & the team for all their help. From start to finish, I was very impressed with Snapes' handling of my house marketing, on-going communication throughout the process & the ultimate sale of the property last week. Nothing was too much trouble and all the staff were extremely professional, friendly & helpful. Selling a property is highly stressful, but the Snapes staff helped to alleviate this as much as humanly possible. THANK YOU

Anne Masters

Posted on Monday, April 03, 2017

As the purchaser of a property from Snapes I would like to say what an absolute delight it has been from start to finish. Very professional and personable. I have had many dealings with estate agents and have to say Snapes have impressed me with there holistic approach to what can often be a very stressful time. I would like to say a special thank you to Nikki for her professionalism and excellent communication and negotiating skills, I will be using Snapes again in the very near future as a result of this experience.. Merry Christmas to you all

Susie S

Posted on Monday, December 19, 2016

Dear Richard, My wife and I have just completed our first house purchase through your Hazel Grove Office, dealing primarily with Hilary Clode. We have both been extremely pleased with the service we've had from Snapes. Everyone we have spoken to has been polite, professional, and friendly. Hilary has gone above and beyond to make everything run smoothly with the purchase, and has made the whole process far less stressful than I'm sure it could have been. We'd be very happy to use Snapes in the future, and would have no reservations in recommending you to others. Thank you, and have a great Christmas and New Year!

Mr & Mrs B

Posted on Saturday, December 17, 2016

Richard Just a brief note of thanks to Snapes, and especially to Nicky, for the helpful support and advice given during the sale of my uncle's house. Because of our remote location it was most reassuring to have a caring, reliable, local presence. Many thanks, John

Mr H

Posted on Saturday, December 10, 2016

To James & all the team, Thankyou for all your efforts and help through the stressful sale of my house, Well done Khalda


Posted on Monday, November 14, 2016

To Amanda, Liz, Gaby, James & Pete Thanks for all your hard work and for sticking with us during this process, All the very best, James J

Mr J

Posted on Monday, November 14, 2016

I really wanted to just send you an email regarding Nicky. She has been absolutely outstanding in the sale and completion of 26 Copperfield Road and she has gone up and above the call of duty with all her time patience and care of everyone in the chain. She was also so kind and nothing was too much trouble. I will certainly be recommending all friends and work colleagues to sell with Andrew Snapes. Many thanks Paula Halliwell and Caroline Cross.

Mrs H and Mrs C

Posted on Monday, November 7, 2016

To Jane, Thank you for chasing around after us and our buyers and making it all happen. All the very best and with fond regards Ivor and Melanie

Mr and Mrs F

Posted on Thursday, November 3, 2016

Hi Angela, I just wanted to say a big thank you to you and the team at Snapes for all your help with the sale of my mother's house. Being so far away, I really appreciated the regular email updates and all your help in dealing with queries and keeping things moving along. I would happily recommend Snapes to anyone considering selling. With thanks and best wishes, Ann

Mrs W

Posted on Thursday, November 3, 2016

Richard Just a short note to say that I got great service from Nicky in your Bramhall office. Although I was buying (not selling through Snapes) she was extremely helpful when the vendors hit issues disrupting my move in. All in all a great service. Tks Mark W.

Mark W

Posted on Wednesday, October 19, 2016