The growing amount of documentation required when it comes to selling your home can be enough to fill a small library, or at least that’s what it feels like when you are faced with all the different bits of paper required to do the deed. And pity the poor estate agents and solicitors handling the sale who need somewhere to store many of these hard copy documents, and this is, of course, where Filofile can help!
“But what are the correct documents?” you ask. Well, here is a guide to everything you will need:
Proof of your identity
To sell your house, you’ll need to provide your solicitor with some ID to show you are who you say you are. This is usually proof of your current address, such as a recent utility bill, plus photo identification (e.g. passport or driving license). Other documents may be accepted, so check with your solicitor or conveyancer beforehand.
This proof of identity is needed to satisfy anti-money laundering laws. Solicitors, conveyancers and estate agents all operate under these rules, which state that they are required to hold evidence for five years – the documents are destroyed after this time. Filofile can take the strain by taking care of storage of these important documents and arranging for document destruction at the scheduled time.
Property title deeds
The owner needs to prove ownership. You may or may not have the title deeds for your property; if you can’t find them, don’t fret as you’ll probably be able to obtain a copy from the solicitor you used when you initially applied for a mortgage or bought your home. Furthermore, your current solicitor will need to obtain official deeds from the Land Registry anyway, so this shouldn’t prove a problem.
However, if your property hasn’t been sold since 1986, the Land Registry likely won’t have a copy (unless you voluntarily registered it). This means you will have to dig out those deeds from your side. In some cases, they may be with your mortgage provider, or possibly with your solicitor – so get in touch with both these parties to find out as soon as possible.
If you can’t locate the deeds at all, you will have to apply for a ‘Title Absolute’ from the Land Registry. This involves proving that you are the legal owner of your home and that you have a right to the freehold and the structures on the property.
Shared freehold documentation
If your home retains a share of the freehold, the relevant documentation related to the freehold structure will be required as well. Likewise, if your home is leasehold, you’ll need to have a copy of the lease and fill in a seller’s leasehold information form too.
Energy Performance Certificate
The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) needs to be included when you sell your property. This document is an assessment of the energy use of your home and its CO2 impact, complete with a rating of G (minimally efficient) to A (maximally efficient). If you don’t have an EPC dated within the last 10 years, you’ll need to acquire one from a qualified assessor.
Management information pack
If you pay any service charges or if your property is leasehold you may need to send off for a Management Information Pack too (also known as a Leasehold Information Pack). You or your solicitor can arrange for this via the freeholder or managing agent; but, as with most aspects of this process, expedience is a virtue – and it’s worth doing this as early as possible, as it can sometimes take a while for them to be processed and sent out.
Fittings and contents form
The fittings and contents form, otherwise known as TA10 details exactly what is included in the sale of your home – from outbuildings, to furniture, to ornaments. Items on this list may include the garage, shed, plants, trees, and any indoor items you throw in to sweeten the deal. Both you and the potential buyer should know precisely what is included in the property price as this will prevent delays further down the line, and reduce the risk of the buyer pulling out.
Property information form
The property information form, or TA6 as it’s also known, is a comprehensive closer look at your home in its current form and status. Any documents noted in this form need to be provided, so ensure you have copies of everything on the list. This may include a Buildings Regulations sign-off or a Fensa Certificate for replacement windows.
You will also need to provide information on your current mortgage, including your account details and the amount that you still owe. You’ll also need to provide details of any additional loans or charges registered to your home.
Acceptance of offer
After you have agreed a sale with a buyer, a document stating the acceptance of the offer will be drafted up by your solicitor or conveyancer.
You’ll also be required to sign a Transfer of Deeds ready for sale completion. This will also be overseen by your legal representative and the contracts will need to be exchanged with the buyer. The contract will include information on the sale price, the date/time when the sale will be complete, and any legal restrictions.
Finally, to round things off you may also require confirmation of stamp duty from your solicitor if your property is over a certain value. This is usually within 30 days of the completion date.
If you would like complimentary advice on storing your documents, get in touch today!