The average timescale for a conveyancing transaction is between 8 – 12 weeks. Conveyancing for a straightforward sale or purchase can take just 4-6 weeks.   A more complicated transaction can take much longer to complete, particularly where there is a chain involved.

Leasehold conveyancing invariably takes much longer as we are dependent on receipt of information from third parties such as management companies and the Freeholder who are currently under no specific time limits to provide the information requested of them.

These timescales are for guidance only as each transaction is different and there are many factors to consider that could delay the process.

We are able to act for both sides of a transaction as long as both parties are in agreement, the parties are not related and provided there is no conflict of interest.  Acting for both sides can considerably reduce the timescales in the process as we are not dependent on awaiting replies from other lawyers nor dependent on the postal system. It can be hugely beneficial to the speed of the transaction where the parties are happy for us to act on both sides.

However no conveyancer can accurately give you a timescale for a conveyancing transaction and the above is simply a guide to help you.  Each transaction is different and there are many factors to consider that could delay the process.

What can delay the conveyancing process?

Delays in receiving a mortgage offer

Anyone buying with a mortgage will need to receive an official mortgage offer to continue with the purchase. A full mortgage application can only be made once buyers have found a property to buy. Lenders will need to undertake a property valuation before confirming the Mortgage Offer.   The Solicitor/Conveyancer also needs to receive their copy of the offer before they are able to report to you on it.  They are unable to report on the offer sent to you as the offer for a lawyer may contain other information and documents the lawyer needs to consider when

Survey Delays

A  survey will need to be obtained on the property. This can delay the process for any number of different reasons, perhaps because the surveyor is busy or the seller delays the surveyors visit. It can sometimes take weeks before a survey is completed.

Survey results reveal issues

If the survey reveals some potential issues that might affect the property value (e.g. structural problems, subsidence, woodworm) then further investigation will be required. This will obviously delay the transaction and major issues might even cause the transaction to fall through.

Delay in obtaining search results

There are various searches that are needed in relation to a purchase.  These searches check for any factors in relation to the Property that you should be aware of.   Sometimes these search results come back quickly, within a few days, and sometimes they are delayed for weeks. It all depends on how quickly the local authority responds.

Seller looking for another home

Sometimes the seller might need to find a new home before selling their current one. The buyer might be ready to proceed to exchange and hand over the money, but everything gets put on hold until the seller finds a new home.

Waiting for a Chain to complete

A chain is when a buyer has found the property they want to purchase, but needs to sell their current property first to get the money required. This creates a chain of sales, with each sale requiring another sale to complete before proceeding.

General delays by other side

Even if you have a good conveyancer and you have promptly completed all the required forms, you will still have to wait for the other side to complete their checks. This can take time and result in delays.