Conveyancing: A Guide to Buying a Freehold Property

Here is a summary of the Conveyancing process for buying a Freehold Property:

  • Instruction: The buyer instructs a solicitor or conveyancer to handle the legal aspects of the transaction. The seller’s solicitor is also involved.

Pre-Contract Stage:

  • Draft Contract: The seller’s solicitor prepares a draft contract and gathers necessary property information.
  • Property Information Form: The seller completes a property information form detailing information about the property, including boundaries, alterations, guarantees, amongst other things. The seller will also complete a fixtures and fittings form, confirming what items will be included in the sale of property e.g. appliances, curtains, light fittings and furniture.
  • Title Deeds and Documents: The seller’s solicitor gathers the property’s title deeds and other relevant documents.

Pre-Contract Enquiries and Searches:

  • Local Authority Search: Various searches are conducted, including local authority, environmental, and drainage searches, to uncover any potential issues affecting the property.
  • Review and Negotiation: The buyer’s solicitor reviews the property information, search results, and responses to enquiries.
  • Enquiries: The buyer’s solicitor sends enquiries to the seller’s solicitor to clarify any outstanding issues. Any issues are addressed and negotiated between the parties.
  • Mortgage and Financing: If the buyer requires a mortgage, they arrange it with a lender and provide the necessary documentation.

Exchange of Contracts:

  • Once both parties are satisfied with the terms and conditions, contracts are formally exchanged.
  • The buyer pays a deposit, usually 10% of the property price, however it may be sometimes possible to negotiate a 5% deposit.
  • At this stage, the transaction becomes legally binding, and both parties are committed to the sale/purchase.

Pre-Completion Stage:

  • The buyer’s solicitor prepares a transfer deed and requests the mortgage funds from the lender.
  • The seller’s solicitor obtains a redemption statement from the seller’s lender (if applicable) and prepares for completion.


  • On the agreed completion date, the buyer’s solicitor transfers the remaining purchase price to the seller’s solicitor.
  • The seller’s solicitor confirms receipt of funds and authorizes the release of keys to the buyer.

Post-Completion Stage:

  • The buyer’s solicitor pays any Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) due on the property.
  • The buyer’s solicitor registers the property’s change of ownership with the Land Registry.
  • The buyer receives the registered title deeds and a copy of the title information document.

Final Steps:

  • The conveyancing process concludes, and the property officially belongs to the buyer.

It’s important to note that while this overview covers the main steps, the conveyancing process can vary depending on individual circumstances and the complexity of the transaction. If you are interested in buying or selling your property, please contact our team at or on 0203 301 6600.