English Law prescribes that until contracts are exchanged or an auction property is “banged down” there is no binding agreement.
Therefore, the excitement of buying or selling a property means nothing and no plans or celebrations should take place until your solicitor tells you the magic words, “contracts are exchanged” or you have succeeded with a bid at auction.
Until that happens either party can run up expenses such as surveys, searches or legal costs without any security that the property is successfully bought and either party can change their mind without having to pay any compensation to the other party as can anyone in the “chain”.
Nothing the selling agent tells you is binding until the exchange of contract has occurred and celebrations mean nothing. Just because the selling agent says the seller or buyer has accepted your offer, it is “subject to contract” and therefore not binding until the contracts are exchanged.
Aston Bond conveyancing solicitors specialise in buying and selling property as they know what these phrases mean.
Nick Powe, Senior Property Solicitor