I’ve learned a useful trick as part of buying and selling house(s) that I want to share with you just in case you find it useful. It could save you months of stress and delay, and maybe even save a deal that was going to fail.
The big secret
Establish direct contact with the buyer/seller.
This will allow you to co-ordinate on making the sale happen and spot anywhere that the chain of communication has broken down. (E.g. both solicitors waiting for each other and a message between them that has vanished into the ether).
This should be easy, but estate agents don’t want you to go round them, and solicitors won’t necessarily pass on your request. But there is a way round this.
Buying a house
Simple, put a note through the seller’s letterbox offering direct contact and including your contact details.
Here’s a template note to a seller that worked for me in a previous purchase.
Sample letter to sellers
[Address of house
you want to buy]
[Your name here]
[Your address (optional)]
Contact: [01184960000 / email@example.com]
We’re the people who put the offer in on your house, and we just wanted to give you the opportunity to make direct contact should you have any questions.
We still absolutely love your house, and are very keen to proceed with the purchase. We are working with [Estate Agent] to move the sale of our house forward.
Our contact details are above, don’t hesitate to get in touch should you wish to. We will of course still do all formal communications through the estate agents and solicitors, we’ve just found it handy in the past to also have direct contact.
[Your name here]
Selling a house
Write a formal letter with an offer of direct communications and include your contact details, PDF it and send it to your solicitor to pass on. Because this is officially a letter to the seller both solicitors will I think be obliged to pass it on.
Here’s a template note to a buyer that worked for me in a previous sale.
Sample letter to buyers
FAO: [Buyer Name Here]
C/O: [Buyer’s Solicitors]
Ref: [Property Address]
Thu 4 Mar 21
This is just a personal note in addition to the formalities around the sale to let you know that we are keen for the process to go smoothly for both sides and that if there’s anything you need from us you are welcome to make direct contact as needed.
All contractual and legal issues will continue to be dealt with through our solicitors and the estate agent, however we have found it useful in the past to be able to co-ordinate directly to ensure a smooth route to a completed sale.
There is no pressure to accept, but should you wish to do so please find my contact details below.
Confirmation of your receipt of this letter would be greatly appreciated.
I ain’t no lawyer
Do this at your own risk! Just as this could help, you could also use this communication channel to sink a deal that would have worked out, or even get yourself in legal trouble.