If you are considering purchasing a property at auction you need to find out everything about the property of your choice. ‘At the drop of the gavel’ in the auction room the property will be yours, a contract is concluded on the sale of the property to you and it will be too late to cancel the sale if you come across a problem.

The most important points are:

Inspection – Make an appointment to visit the property. Our agents will have all the details relating to the property. Assess the condition of the property – electrical wiring, central heating, kitchen and bathroom fittings etc.. Check for damp, signs of repair, the roof and external walls. If you are concerned ask for a structural survey to be done.

Finance – Never consider buying at auction if you have not got the full amount of the purchase price at your immediate disposal or you do not have a mortgage offer on the property. Never be tempted to buy, thinking you could come up with the balance later, auction does not allow much flexibility. As in all property purchases, there are penalties for failing to come up with the purchase price on completion, usually twenty working days from the date of the auction, but it some instances this can be less.

Legal Information – The Auctioneers will have available what is known as a legal pack on the property. This will have been compiled by the seller’s solicitor and generally contains copies of the Title Deeds, Special Conditions of Sale, Land Registry Search, Leases (if applicable) and other pertinent documents. It is important that you inspect these yourself or perhaps better still, ask your solicitor to look through this paperwork before the auction. These Packs are available to view for free online, or from the solicitors who will make an up front charge for this service. Payment can be made by credit or debit card when you place your order. Please note this charge is not recoverable. This information is also available for inspection on the day of the auction at the auction venue from where the property is being sold. Always remember that if the auctioneers gavel falls on your bid then a binding contract comes into existence so do make sure that you do all your homework beforehand.

Addendum -The particulars of any property included in the auction catalogue and shown on the websites may require amendment or elaboration and this information is contained in an addendum which will be available at the auction. The Auctioneer will refer to the addendum prior to the commencement of the auction and purchasers will buy on the understanding that they are fully aware of the information contained in the addendum before bidding.

Identification – In order to comply with the UK’s current Money Laundering Regulations, we ask all prospective purchasers to provide proof of identity. Please check which documentation conforms to the current regulations by clicking the link. We will need to see this at the contract signing stage along with details of your solicitors.

Deposit If the auctioneers gavel falls on your bid, you will be asked to attend the office where you will need to sign the sale contract and pay a deposit. This will normally be 10% of the purchase price or a minimum of £2000.00 whichever is the greater. Deposits can only be paid by banker’s draft, building society, company cheque or personal cheque. Cash will not be accepted nor payment by credit card.

Administration Charge – In addition to the deposit payable upon exchange of contracts, buyers will be required to pay an administration charge of £500 (inclusive of VAT). A full VAT receipt will be issued at the auction or the day after exchange of contracts with pre- or post-auction sales.

Plans and Photographs – Photographs published in the catalogue are there to aid identification of the property only, as are the plans which are not necessarily to scale.

Reserve Price – Each property will be sold subject to a reserve price. This is a confidential figure agreed between the Auctioneer and the seller immediately prior to the auction and is a figure below which the Auctioneer cannot sell the property.

Attending the Auction – It is always wise to arrive in good time for the start of the auction as it will start promptly. Important announcements are made at the start of the auction which could relate to the property you are interested in.

Insurance – From the time that the property is sold to you at the auction, unless the contract states to the contrary, it is at your insurable risk so make sure that you have the ability to trigger the appropriate cover immediately.

The Contract – Once the Memorandum of Sale (the contract) has been completed you will be asked to sign two copies of the contract. The first copy will be given to you, together with the legal pack, which you must then take to your solicitors. The second copy and the deposit are retained on the seller’s behalf. Completion will usually take place twenty working days later although this period can differ depending upon individual seller’s requirements. Please refer to the legal pack for the property.

Post-Auction Sales – If a property you are interested in does not sell please register your interest and/or make an offer to one of our staff. This will be put to the seller as soon as possible. If you are successful, you will be asked to complete the Memorandum of sale and pay the required deposit.

Requirements for Sale Day – Please bring ID such as passport or driving licence to conform to the Money Laundering Regulations. Payment of the deposit either by personal cheque, company cheque or banker’s draft. Details of your solicitor.

The above information is for general guidance only and those interested in bidding on a property are advised to consult their solicitor or other appropriate professional advisor before raising their paddle.

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