Residential Property Services Covid-19 arrangements

We continue to face challenging times at the moment as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak but our Property Department remains open for new and existing business. Some of our staff are furloughed but most of our lawyers are now working either from the office or from home and we have maintained a core of support staff in the office throughout to process those parts of the transaction which cannot be dealt with remotely.

We can undertake most of the transaction remotely by receiving client instructions and offering advice by email or by telephone. Meetings can be facilitated by Zoom or by Skype and, since the 15th June, we have been able to meet with clients in the office by appointment where necessary. We have implemented some strict safety guidelines to keep our clients and our staff safe. More details can be found at   https://www.gardnercroft.co.uk/updated-coronavirus-statement/   To avoid disappointment please do not attend our offices without an appointment.

In terms of your transaction itself, we can progress this from the start and there should be no delay there. The issue for clients will be arranging completion and contractually committing to the completion date when contracts are exchanged. For some clients, for example those who are buying investment properties or where there is no chain or they are not going to move in on the day of completion, agreeing a completion date may not be a problem.

For clients who are planning to move in or out of their home on the day of completion, agreeing a date may be more complicated in the current circumstances. An obvious concern is one of the parties being unable to complete because of circumstances beyond their control such as a local or general lockdown being reimposed or being unexpectedly forced to shield or self-isolate. There may be a blockage at the beginning of a transaction because many surveyors have been locked down and backlogs of work may delay Homebuyers surveys or mortgage valuations for the next few weeks. Also, we will discuss with solicitors for the other parties involved the best date for completion and we can agree a special contractual condition so that if completion is not possible on the day because of Coronavirus, the parties will have a long stop date to get the deal done.

Please rest assured that we will do everything we can to keep your transaction moving and achieve the completion date that you would like. We know that you will appreciate that sometimes this will not be possible if it is out of our hands.

If you have any queries please telephone 01227 813400

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