December 1, 2023

Do you want to complete your sale and new build purchase on the same day?

Sale helps timber merchant to grow its branches

Looking to complete the purchase of a new build on the same day you sell and move out your old home?

When purchasing a new build property unless the property is build complete (ready to move into), it is likely that legal completion will take place several months after exchange of contracts. You need to consider the implications of this on any related sale transaction.

If you want to legally complete both matters on the same day you will need to discuss with your conveyancer the best way to draft the contract for your sale so that it links with the terms of the purchase contract.

The new build purchase contract will usually have an anticipated legal completion date in it, along with details of the completion notice procedure. A common notice clause found in a typical new build contract would be a 10 working day notice and is usually triggered by an event (this would be set out specifically in the actual contract), to give an example the property being signed off by building control or the NHBC (National House Building Council) or other new build warranty supplier. If that was the case we would seek a clause in your sale contract to provide for an 8 or 9 working day completion notice (the reason why we stagger the number of days is just in case the new build contract notice came in late in the working day and there wasn’t time to officially serve the related sale notice the same day).

It is wise for the sale contract to contain provisions for an eventual completion date, referred to as long stop. If your buyer is getting a mortgage to fund the purchase, it would be sensible for them to make sure the contract provisions allow them to complete before a mortgage offer expires.

A further point to consider is making the sale contract conditional on the purchase contract, in the very unlikely event you wished to terminate your new build purchase contract (perhaps due to build delays or a material change being made to the property meaning you no longer wished to proceed). It is however important to flag a buyer may be unlikely to agree a termination clause. Your conveyancer will need to carefully consider how the termination rights in your sale contract and purchase contract work alongside each other.

Will I have to rent before I can move into my new build?

You may decide to complete on your sale and move into temporary accommodation if the completion date of your purchase is too far in the future. Possible reasons for this:

  • At the point you marketed your sale property, you had no idea you might buy an ‘off plan’ new build property so when you accepted an offer from your buyer it was not a condition of the sale that your buyer would wait for your new property to be finished and you do not wish to risk now upsetting your buyer.
  • You have asked your buyer to agree a delayed completion, possibly an on notice completion and they simply will not agree and only want to proceed with a fixed legal completion date within more normal time frames for a completion.
  • Your buyer in principle would be happy with an on notice completion but they also have a related sale and other parties in the chain who are not happy to agree an on notice completion. Often the longer the chain the more unlikely it can be to agree an on notice completion.

Call the new build team today

New build property lawyers
Our new build service

New build property conveyancing solicitors

We have dedicated new build experts and streamlined processes. We are here to help you exchange contracts as soon possible.

Buying a new build property can be more complex than buying a ‘second hand’ property. This is why we have a specialist team to handle new build property transactions. Often time frames can be critical, so a knowledgeable and direct point of contact is key.

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