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02-09-2020, 22:01   #1
Jay D
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Due to Close on Monday, Solicitor Very Silent, Need Advice

Currently in the middle of selling. We agreed on a closing date of Sept 7th about a month ago. Since then the deeds are gone to my solicitor, mortgage stuff, LPT and NPPR clearance furnished as well. However, I feel I have heard very little from my solicitor.

2 weeks ago I asked has the loan offer come through for the buyer. Other questions were answered but that one not. They were waiting for a reply from the buyer solicitor. The buyer solicitor came back with pre-contract queries then about structure, any extensions etc. The answers from us were given immediately and since then have heard no more from their solicitor. When I emailed mine today I have been told that they still haven't got a reply meaning Monday closing isn't really looking good, is it?

Also no mention of a structural survey, valuation or any confirmation/negotiating on items of inclusion to be left in the house when they buy. Not to mention still no clarification of the loan offer. When I spoke to the solicitor originally he said that he was friends with the buyer solicitor and would put the pressure on if needs be. Kinda feel that 'needs be' is here...

So my query really is, is this normal? With 5 days to go and still some important stuff outstanding, what would you do? maybe I am being OTT...

I have requested a call with the solicitor in the morning and am going to ask the following questions. Would be very grateful to hear other people's advice.
  • Any update with the structural survey?
  • Any update with the valuation?
  • Has the buyer loan offer come through?
  • Are there any issues with the contract? Why is it taking so long for their solicitor to get back with them?
  • Would it be possible to rent to the buyer before closing if going to take longer?

Last edited by Jay D; 02-09-2020 at 22:08.
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02-09-2020, 23:22   #2
Pivot Eoin
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Originally Posted by Jay D View Post
Currently in the middle of selling. We agreed on a closing date of Sept 7th about a month ago. Since then the deeds are gone to my solicitor, mortgage stuff, LPT and NPPR clearance furnished as well. However, I feel I have heard very little from my solicitor.

2 weeks ago I asked has the loan offer come through for the buyer. Other questions were answered but that one not. They were waiting for a reply from the buyer solicitor. The buyer solicitor came back with pre-contract queries then about structure, any extensions etc. The answers from us were given immediately and since then have heard no more from their solicitor. When I emailed mine today I have been told that they still haven't got a reply meaning Monday closing isn't really looking good, is it?

Also no mention of a structural survey, valuation or any confirmation/negotiating on items of inclusion to be left in the house when they buy. Not to mention still no clarification of the loan offer. When I spoke to the solicitor originally he said that he was friends with the buyer solicitor and would put the pressure on if needs be. Kinda feel that 'needs be' is here...

So my query really is, is this normal? With 5 days to go and still some important stuff outstanding, what would you do? maybe I am being OTT...

I have requested a call with the solicitor in the morning and am going to ask the following questions. Would be very grateful to hear other people's advice.
  • Any update with the structural survey?
  • Any update with the valuation?
  • Has the buyer loan offer come through?
  • Are there any issues with the contract? Why is it taking so long for their solicitor to get back with them?
  • Would it be possible to rent to the buyer before closing if going to take longer?
In general 5 weeks closing time is very optimistic and we'll below average

Survey shouldn't take long to organise, so that ones on the buyer if it hasn't happened yet.

Loan Offers are moving very slow moving at the moment depending on the bank.

Loan offer won't be sent until Valuation has happened from Bank Valuer.
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03-09-2020, 07:29   #3
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The initial closing date has very little to do with reality. The always just stick in a date. It sounds like you haven't signed contracts yet where the buyer has to give you the 10% deposit. Even after this, closing can be several weeks afterwards (depending how long it takes to drawdown the balance from the bank)

Ask your solicitor to chase the proof of the loan being approved. Sounds like they are having issues going from AIP to actual mortgage.

You should also note that a lot of property solcitor take their leave in August and this could be some of the delay. I think 2-3 months all in is a more realistic timelime.

Don't be afraid to push, if they really want the house, they will respond. Someone sat on my house sale agreed for 3 months while I believe had no intention to buy. I missed the summer rush and had to sell later a lower price.
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03-09-2020, 17:41   #4
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Thank you both very much for your input. Eoin I appreciate it's a very short timeframe compared to normal and good to get a little insight from you re the process itself.

I have been told that drive by valuations happen sometimes and that it is not necessary for valuers to actually enter the house or arrange viewing. She told me that the buyer solicitor has said that the loan has been approved.

Housebuying, that is exactly my concern too. Thank you for sharing your insightful experience, seems similar to my own feelings. So I pushed a little... Some points below.

I have requested proof of the approval by tomorrow. I don't think I am being unreasonable if they actually do have the approval. Would you say this is resonable?

I am told the buyer is on holidays and that self isolation etc may be required when they return on Monday. I found this to be complete bs tbh, so much so that I expressed I don't believe the buyer is serious if no arrangements had been put in place prior to travel. Even the solicitor can sign on their behalf.

Glaringly obvious is that no contracts are signed, 6 weeks after sale agreed. Leaving no consequence if buyer walks away and as you rightly pointed out Housebuying, timing of the year is crap. I expressed that we are looking for serious commitment in the form of signatures next week, otherwise we will have to consider other options.
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03-09-2020, 17:48   #5
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It’s possible the buyers had AIP and are or were on the Covid payment and are stalling to wait until their employer takes them off it before the bank will approve the loan offer. I’ve heard of this happening a lot on this forum recently.

Either way, I think trust your gut.
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03-09-2020, 19:07   #6
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Thanks Batgurl, good to have a decent overview.
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04-09-2020, 07:05   #7
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Thank you both very much for your input. Eoin I appreciate it's a very short timeframe compared to normal and good to get a little insight from you re the process itself.

I have been told that drive by valuations happen sometimes and that it is not necessary for valuers to actually enter the house or arrange viewing. She told me that the buyer solicitor has said that the loan has been approved.

Housebuying, that is exactly my concern too. Thank you for sharing your insightful experience, seems similar to my own feelings. So I pushed a little... Some points below.

I have requested proof of the approval by tomorrow. I don't think I am being unreasonable if they actually do have the approval. Would you say this is resonable?

I am told the buyer is on holidays and that self isolation etc may be required when they return on Monday. I found this to be complete bs tbh, so much so that I expressed I don't believe the buyer is serious if no arrangements had been put in place prior to travel. Even the solicitor can sign on their behalf.

Glaringly obvious is that no contracts are signed, 6 weeks after sale agreed. Leaving no consequence if buyer walks away and as you rightly pointed out Housebuying, timing of the year is crap. I expressed that we are looking for serious commitment in the form of signatures next week, otherwise we will have to consider other options.
No, I don't think you are being unreasonable at all. I don't why self-isolating would stop someone producing approval from the bank. I would also question why someone who go on holidays when trying to close a house. If they have no outstanding conveyancing questions, it sounds like they are stalling. I wouldn't mind stalling if the bank are being slow but they have to engage. Explain the delay.

When I was sale agreed and it wasn't going any where fast, and I pushed.. I was first told that the buyer was travelling for work and then that the buyer solicitor was on leave (by our real estate agent). The buyer solicitor raised some question and we had to get a report. Our EA said, don't worry, I'll just say you are on holidays to buy some time. Gave me total insight into how these guys work. We got the BS report two days later and they still pulled out.
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04-09-2020, 08:47   #8
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Can be a lot of differing situations.

I've just gone sale agreed and been told it will take up to 3 weeks For Loan Offer to be issued... Easy to see how this could be 4-5 in August with any one of the Underwriter, Valuer, Mortgage Account Manager or Solicitor being on Holidays.

They also could be switching Mortgage Providers last minute - that is not uncommon, especially with brokers. Things like Interest Rates, Policies and Cashback rates etc. can change a lot in a very short amount of time, so Someone who thought they got a good mortgage in April, Now in September maybe might have a much better option with another lender... again this could be causing an extra few weeks delay to go through the AIP Process again.
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04-09-2020, 18:08   #9
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Approval should have been presented to the EA before an offer was accepted. I sold last year and BoI took 12 weeks to issue the funds to the buyers and that was before COVID. The buyers may not need a survey done, not all banks require it and not all buyers have one done. It sounds to me like 5 weeks from sale agreed to closing was never realistic. I agree you just have to trust your gut, you are also able to walk away at this point.
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15-09-2020, 23:25   #10
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My solicitor called yesterday to say buyer no longer wishes to proceed with purchase. This was following an email from buyer solicitor. A one liner apparently. Was due to sign myself this morning.

This was followed by an EA call an hour afterwards to request the buyers are let in to take measurements yesterday. I asked them what exactly was going on. Completely all over the place with mixed messages.

What followed was a flurry of crap between me, my solicitor and the EA. Only to be told that the buyers are as keen as mustard by the EA and they know nothing about the mixup by their solicitor. Came, took measurements yesterday. EA called after they took measurements to say everything seems normal from their side. Then repeatedly said ‘they’ll keep their finger on the pulse’. What fu*king horse **** talk. But expecting significant development in the next few days.

Solicitor rang again this morning. When I asked directly what was the reason for that mail and message yesterday he didn’t know. Only he had his suspicions I’m told. Would later in the week be ok to sign he says.

If he has the contract there what’s stopping me from signing? Is the buyer hoping for elsewhere or what? Still no clearer on actual closing date. So many mistakes in this process.

Sounds like the buyers might be hedging alright and honestly sounds like par for the course. You can sign the contracts but they won't be binding until the buyers sign them too.
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15-09-2020, 23:34   #11
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Sounds like the buyers might be hedging alright and honestly sounds like par for the course. You can sign the contracts but they won't be binding until the buyers sign them too.
Apparently they have signed. Man this is just completely all over the place.
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15-09-2020, 23:35   #12
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Apparently they have signed. Man this is just completely all over the place.

Yep, welcome to house selling, it's a roller coaster until closing day.
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17-09-2020, 17:14   #13
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Apparently they have signed. Man this is just completely all over the place.

Good news though. Congrats
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