Step 9: The Waiting Game

Take a deep breath and relax, you've earned it. The pace slows a little now as you wait for your legal team to do some tyre kicking. For the next six weeks, sometimes less and sometimes more, enquiries will be made about the property. Survey and drainage will be examined, government departments will be written to, heritage orders will be inspected and council checks will be performed.

In other words, the work is (hopefully) out of your hands, but someone still had to do it. A kind vendor may grant you additional time if you are having difficulty meeting the agreed deadline but don't count on it. The chances are that the property is also costing them money (through their own mortgage repayments or lost interest) and they are under no obligation to give you more time.

This is the time when buyers (and vendors) get an attack of the jitters. Buyers keep their fingers crossed that everything about the property will be fine and run according to schedule and the vendor is praying that the sale goes ahead and they can get their hands on some cold, hard cash.

A good way to pass the time (and raise your spirits) is to start assembling quotes from removalists and renovators, preparing a list of people that will need to be notified of your change of address and the like. You may also be granted access to the property so that you can measure up curtains, white-goods and rugs, but again, the vendor is well within their right to say 'no'.

There's not much left that can go wrong, but don't go ordering that customised kitchen just yet - there's still one step left.

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