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From browsing to buying

It takes buyers six months and 24 days to purchase a home, research claims. A poll of 2,000 UK home owners by virtual tour technology provider Matterport, assessed the average time it takes to buy a house from browsing, to viewing, making an offer, exchanging and completing. It discovered the lengthiest part of the process is exchanging contracts – which can take up to 25 months in some cases, but five months and ten days on average.

When starting the home buying process, potential buyers will look at more than 16 homes online across a period of just under 20 hours. Around four days is spent waiting for viewings, with buyers on average taking a further four and a half days to put an offer on a home after its first inspection.

On average, buyers view their future home three times before making an offer and take three friends or family members with them to help make the decision. Once the purchase has been agreed, a further 24 days are needed to secure a mortgage offer, and three days to get a solicitor on board. After contracts are exchanged, completion typically takes around nine days, according to the research.

James Morris-Manuel, vice-president for Matterport, said: “Buying a home can be one of the most exciting – and most frustrating – experiences of all. “While the idea of moving somewhere new is thrilling, the reality can be very different, especially when solicitors appear to be dragging their feet, chains break down and viewings take longer than expected to arrange. Even viewing a home can be irritating – having to fit in with the owner’s timing and requirements, not being close enough to view a property as often as you’d wish, and then wanting to revisit when a decision has been made.”

Matterport describe a typical breakdown of how long it takes to buy a home:

Time spent browsing homes to visit online before choosing one to buy: 19.46 hours – 0.81 days. Time between finding a home online and getting a viewing: 3.74 days. Time between the first viewing and putting in an offer on a new home: 4.47 days. Time taken, once decided to buy, to get a mortgage offer: 23.94 days. Time taken, once decided to buy, to find a solicitor: 2.98 days. Time taken to exchange contracts: 5.34 months – 165.54 days. Time between exchange and completion: 9.47 days. Total days: 210.95 / 6.8 months.

We’re pleased to report that Wilsons are at odds with this report, mainly on the length of time to exchange contracts, quoted as 5.34 months (22 weeks) above. So much depends upon the capability and speed of the conveyancers involved but if they are on the ball (too many aren’t!) and no untoward, time consuming hitches crop up, we reckon on an average of 10 weeks from sale agreed to exchange of contracts. We can honestly boast that our team chase all our sales along vigorously and effectively and if there are any hold ups it’s certainly not down to us!

We cannot emphasise too strongly the importance of appointing a fast and reliable conveyancing solicitor and if anyone out there is looking for one, give us a call and we’ll be only too happy to put you wise.

By Chris Willey

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