Buying a new home
Can I get the mortgage I need?
Before you can reserve a new home, we will need to know that you are able to obtain the mortgage you might need – we can put you in touch with an independent company who can assess this in confidence for you so that you know the budget you are working with before you make any decisions. They can provide a ‘Decision in Principle’ letter which confirms the amount you can borrow.
Reserving your new home
You have probably spent quite a bit of time deciding on the new home you want. Once you have decided that you would like to buy one of our new homes, the first step is to reserve the plot of your choice. We will need to know your solicitor’s details and you must be in a position at this point to proceed with the purchase and must be:
- cash buyer and be able to demonstrate that you have the funds available, or
- first time buyer and be able to show a valid mortgage in principle agreed, or
- home owner dependent on the sale of your current property but have agreed a sale which doesn’t have a chain involving someone who still needs to find a buyer and you also have a mortgage in principle agreed
Once you have paid the reservation fee we will check with your estate agent if there is a related sale and your broker/lender if there is a mortgage to ensure that everything looks positive and that your purchase should proceed smoothly. We will then process your reservation and your purchase is underway!
Instructing your solicitor
You must now instruct your solicitor that you wish them to act for you in the purchase of your new home. They will send you out a letter confirming their fees and what they understand you wish them to do. If you are happy with the document, you should sign and return this promptly as they won’t start work until you do. Your solicitor will also want you to pay for ‘Searches’ which provide solicitors with a lot of information about the property you are buying and the surrounding area.
Applying for your mortgage
You will need to contact your broker or lender and get the mortgage application underway as soon as possible after reservation. Your lender will want to have the new home you are buying valued to make sure that the money they are lending will be adequately secured on the property. You may have to pay a valuation fee and sometimes product fees but your lender or broker will advise you fully on this. You will also need to advise your lender/broker of what other money you are investing in the property and provide evidence of your income etc.
The conveyancing process
Early in the process, your solicitor will receive a draft Contract from the developer’s solicitor and a lot of other documents to provide information about the new home you are buying. All this information will be scrutinised by your solicitor, along with your mortgage offer and searches when they are received and answers to any queries that may have been raised. Your solicitor will report to you when satisfied about the property you are buying and will ask you to sign the Contract and provide them with a deposit (usually 10%) so you can exchange Contracts. We will liaise closely with your solicitor up to this point and will be able to make sure everything is proceeding smoothly
Exchange of contracts
One of the conditions of accepting your reservation is that you are able to exchange contracts within four weeks of your solicitor receiving the draft contract from the developer’s solicitor. This is usually achieved without difficulty provided you instruct you solicitor straight away and make it clear at the outset that this is a requirement of your purchase. Paying for your searches straight away and getting your mortgage application in quickly will also help. When you exchange contracts you will be legally bound to go through with the purchase when your new home is ready.
Colour choices and extras
Once you have exchanged contracts and provided construction is not too advanced, you should be able to choose your preferred finishes for the kitchen units, wall tiles and flooring as well as any standard extras. All extras have to be paid for in advance on a non-refundable basis.
We will liaise with you throughout the build process and as the property starts to near build completion we will be able to give you firmer dates. When your new home is ready, it will be inspected by NHBC who will issue a cover note to confirm the property is ready for occupation. We will then give you 10 working days to complete the purchase, during which the mortgage funds are obtained and/or you must provide your solicitor with the balance of the money required to complete your purchase. You will generally move in 10 working days after we tell you the house is ready and if you are selling your current property you will probably need to complete the sale of that property on the same day unless you have already done so and moved into temporary accommodation.
We will go through a rigorous snagging process to make sure your new home is as perfect as possible for when you move in. You will inspect your new home at the handover meeting to make sure there is nothing damaged and read the meters. The developer will pay for any gas, electricity and water consumed up to that point and will advise the suppliers of the new owner details so that the supplies can be put straight into your name and billed to you in future. You will be told who to contact in the event that there are any problems which require urgent attention after you have moved in.
Six months’ defects inspection
All new homes have an inspection after six months to determine whether there are any defects which need to be rectified – you will be invited to meet at the property to point out anything you feel may need attention. All defects are judged by reference to the requirements of the NHBC Standards. If you purchase a showhome, this will undergo a defects inspection and any necessary maintenance before handover and will not receive a further six months’ defects maintenance inspection.
Consumer Code for Home Builders
All our new homes are sold under this Code. The benefits and protections for purchasers of new homes are detailed in the Code