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Our commercial team in Lincoln, Hull, Market Rasen and Grimsby prides itself on its sound business sense, commercial insight, local knowledge and first class understanding of the relevant legal disciplines ranging from employment law, business contracts, dispute resolution to agriculture and property development. From company formation to sale, succession, dissolution or dispute resolution, you can trust our team to deliver first class service and results.
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Home » Latest News » My Buyers would like to start moving in before completion day, should I let them?

My Buyers would like to start moving in before completion day, should I let them?

My Buyers would like to start moving in before completion day, should I let them?

Basically, No.

Moving home can often be a stressful time and it is not uncommon these days for buyers and sellers to correspond directly via social media or other means. Although there is no problem with that, and it can be helpful but sometimes this leads to innocent requests that have serious implications. One such request often made by a buyer is for access to your property.  

Whilst it may not seemingly be a big issue to allow your buyer to move a few items in or have a key you should never agree to such a request without first taking appropriate advice from your solicitor.

Bridge McFarland would never recommend that you release keys before completion of your sale even if the contract has exchanged except only in very limited circumstances and always in accordance with the specific advice given by your solicitor.

There are factors that need to be considered not least if there is a mortgage on your property. Allowing your buyers a key to store items or letting them move in prior to completion may well be a breach of your mortgage conditions which can have serious consequences in itself and possibly invalidate your insurance.

We appreciate you will wish to help your buyers. If you are contemplating allowing your buyer access, as a minimum the following will need to be considered: What is it that they can do? Will they keep hold of the key? Can they store items at the property? Are they able to decorate or make alterations? Are they allowed to move in themselves? Who will pay for the insurance and utilities? Will they pay you? What happens if completion does not take place?

Our standard contract of sale does account for scenarios where keys may need to be released and, if having considered the position further, a more robust agreement is needed then we can organise this for you. The agreement needs to be very clear on the terms and limitations of access to avoid any scenario that may lead to anyone claiming a tenancy or other right in respect of your property.

All this can seem over the top especially if you have so far had a good relationship with your buyer but written agreements do protect both parties and having the clarity of such an agreement can help to avoid potential disputes; removing an unwanted occupier is stressful and very costly!

Our clients’ benefit from Bridge McFarland being a full service law firm so should the need arise for expert advice outside of the sale then we have a team of experts on hand to help.