In recent years more and more people are opting to commission their own due diligence before transactions begin. Both residential and commercial property owners are taking matters into their own hands and commissioning their own Searches and Surveys before their properties are placed on the market and the benefits are clear.
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail
The due diligence process is incredibly important in any property transaction as it ensures that any issues with the property are unearthed. A competent purchaser’s team of solicitors, accountants and surveyors will inevitably unearth any issues with the property which inevitably delays transactions, threatening the sale price and resulting in many transactions falling through.
Once an offer has been accepted any leverage on the purchase price or any works that need to be done to the property will be in the buyer’s hands. Any issues that are unearthed can also make it difficult to re-market the property to individuals who were previously interested.
The due diligence process is most successful when the surveys and searches align with the property in question. Any planning permissions that need to be obtained, any structural issues and any environmental issues need to be dealt with prior to the transaction to ensure that the property in question is fit for purpose. As a rule of thumb, you should place yourself in the purchaser’s position and consider what you would expect to see as a prospective buyer.
As the seller of a property you will have access to a variety of documents which surveyors will find useful for example, asbestos, concrete, drainage and fire reports. When these are provided to a surveyor by the seller the scope of the survey will drastically change. The surveyor’s time will be saved and perspective can be given.
Another benefit of the report is that you can select your own due diligence providers. If you have a particularly trusted surveyor then you are able to use these, and if any issues do arise, you will be confident that you can trust the surveyor. In addition, you can choose your own solicitor who can discuss enquiries with you directly rather than fielding enquiries received from a buyer’s solicitor.
It is always important to be aware of the potential pitfalls of a transaction before you begin. Your solicitor and surveyor will be able to work together to review whether any additional permissions or works need to be done to the property prior to listing. Additionally, you will be in a position to work with your solicitor to go through any Land Registry issues and legal matters that need to be addressed such as applying for Probate or merging your Leasehold.
While you are searching for a buyer you can save important time by commissioning your own due diligence reports. This allows you to cut out delays to the transaction and move at your own pace. This takes a large amount of the stress out of a transaction and shows prospective buyers that you are a serious seller.