Why you need a great solicitor + The problem with Shared Ownership

This week I chat with my solicitor Nishita about why it’s so necessary to have a solicitor that has your back. How we dealt with the most recent flat sale and the pitfalls of shared ownership and the times she’s given me advice that’s saved me thousands of pounds. This is a discussion not to be missed.

Join the Members Club waiting list here: https://ncrealestatemembersclub.com

If you want to speak to Nishita: Nishita.Gudka@lbmw.com

If you want to listen to the podcast rather than watch the video: https://anchor.fm/the-nc-podcast

Here’s the transcript from the video:

Natasha Collins:            Hello, and welcome to the NC Podcast. My name’s Natasha Collins, and I am the founder of NC Real Estate, which includes members’ clubs for landlords and property investors to come and build profitable property portfolios that completely aligns with their goals.

Natasha Collins:            I am super excited this week, because I have another guest. I’ve got my solicitor, Nishita Gudka, on the line. Hi Nishita.

Nishita Gudka:              Hi Natasha.

Natasha Collins:            We’ve been working together for the last seven years. We just discussed that just before we started this, and I’m like, “Wow.” Nishita, I’ll let you introduce yourself.

Nishita Gudka:              Thanks. As Natasha said, I’m Nishita. I am a partner at Lee Bolton Monier Williams, which is in London. I deal with all property matters. If it’s got to do with property, I love dealing with it. My specialisms range from residential property, commercial property. I even dabble in schools and churches. So the chances are, if you have something to do with property, I will probably have seen it at some point during my career.

Natasha Collins:            Amazing. Definitely. Nishita always gives me the best advice going.

Nishita Gudka:              Well, I try my best.

Natasha Collins:            And also honest advice, when things don’t seem to be panning out right.

Nishita Gudka:              Exactly. I’m glad you said that. I think that honesty between a solicitor and a client is probably the most important thing. If you don’t have that relationship of trust and confidence, you as a solicitor are not confident in telling your client when things are going to go wrong, then your client is not going to be confident about listening to you when you say that. So that is really, really important.

Natasha Collins:            That is so true. I know this was going to be one of the later questions, but actually now we’re touching on it, that’s one of the biggest things that I share, especially in the Facebook group, saying that your solicitor isn’t someone who’s going to be there ripping you off as some people think will happen. They have to be someone you can trust, right?

Nishita Gudka:              Absolutely, because if we say to go ahead with a deal that we know has got faults and pitfalls, we’re the ones who are going to be giving you negligent advice. It’s not in our interest to do that. And also, the chances are if wee give you bad advice, you’re not going to come back to us, and we want you to keep coming back and building a great property portfolio and keep instructing us.

Natasha Collins:            So true. There was one fateful time over the last couple of years where I was trying to buy a property with my development partner, and you said to me, “This lending just isn’t worth it. Do not go for it,” and we pulled out.

Nishita Gudka:              Yes, I can remember that day when we had you both in the boardroom. We sat down and we’d got quite far through it, and you made that really difficult decision to pull out despite the time, effort and money that you had spent so far, and I think it was a good decision, but not an easy one to make.

Natasha Collins:            No, but again, we’re so appreciative of you for… For those of you listening, we were trying to buy a property in Nottingham, which if it had worked out it would’ve been a really good deal, but we were using bridging finance, and I think… What was it? Something in the bridging finance terms that were just not great.

Nishita Gudka:              Yeah. I think that you were going to be liable for significant costs, the way that they had structured it, and they were not willing to negotiate at all.

Natasha Collins:            No. Then almost at the time we were looking to exchange, they changed the goalposts on how much they were lending.

Nishita Gudka:              Yeah. It was a good one to chalk down to experience.

Natasha Collins:            Definitely, definitely, definitely, definitely. It’s made me very wary of bridging lenders. But also it highlights the fact that bridging lenders are very much in control because they are lending unregulated finance. They really can say whatever they want to, and really they’ll just go, “Well, you want the money, so we tell you to jump, you just say, ‘How high?'” And at that point, we couldn’t find any more money. We needed an extra £9000 or something that day to complete the deal.

Nishita Gudka:              Exactly. And they know that you’re in a precarious position because you don’t go to bridging finance if you have upper finance sorted. Sadly, I think some of them do take advantage of that.

Natasha Collins:            Yes. But that deal would not have worked if we’d have gone and taken out an additional £9000 loan from somewhere else. I’m very thankful to you for saying to stop. “We’ll stop the process here, and we’ll find another property and it will all be fine.”

Natasha Collins:            That being said, and I think we’ll do this question first, how do you know to choose the right solicitor then? Is it a two-way process? Does the solicitor have to choose the client as well?

Nishita Gudka:              I think so. I think that there are some clients that I really enjoy working with, because we have a good working relationship. But from a client perspective, it is about that relationship, and it is also about the honest that your solicitor or your legal advisor, the legal knowledge that they have.

Nishita Gudka:              One of the things I would always say is go and meet them. Go and meet the person who you are going to instruct. Do they inspire confidence? Do they have enough time to return your calls? Because if they don’t, when you’re trying to instruct them, the chances are when you finally come to the point of instructing them, you’re likely to have the same issue. I’m not saying that you’ll never have a situation with a solicitor where they’re so busy they don’t come back to you for a couple of days. That happens. That happens to everybody. But when you’re waiting for days and days and days, that does become an issue.

Nishita Gudka:              But I think you also need to be very clear about what you want out of the relationship. Are you going to be instructing them on a long-term basis? Are you going to be looking at slightly difficult transactions, or are you looking for a one-off, very simple transaction, which… You may choose to go for somebody who can get something done quickly and cheaply. There are a lot of factors, and I know we’ll come to this, in cost and value, which also make a difference in what you’re going to do, because the value of your transaction will dictate how much you’re willing to spend on advice.

Natasha Collins:            That’s very true. Very true. Let’s cover that now, because there’s some people who say they would never spend more than £1000 on a property transaction when they’re buying or when they’re selling. But again, as you said, you need to weigh that up. What would your advice be on that?

Nishita Gudka:              Well, I think you need to have a figure in mind, absolutely. But work out the value of that asset to you. If you’re buying a £50,000 property that has no issues, then absolutely, go for somebody who’s not going to charge you a lot of money. But if you are looking at a lease where somebody actually has to read throughout the lease and report to you on that, factor in how long it’s going to take a solicitor to read the document properly and report to you on it properly, because if you’re not going to pay more than £1000… If you’re looking at somebody taking two to three hours just to read a lease, think how much they’re going to be earning per hour out of you, and whether they’re actually going to be spending sufficient time on your matter.

Nishita Gudka:              Hopefully that makes sense. I mean it’s very easy to try and commoditize a conveyancing process, and say, “Any conveyance up to a certain amount will cost £1000. Anything over a certain amount will cost £2000.” But the complexity of it really also affects the cost. Going back to your £50,000 purchase, it may be a £50,000 piece of land that you’re looking to develop, in which case actually the process and the due diligence exercise that your solicitor’s going to have to do is going to be much more involved, and that’s going to cost you more than £1000. But your potential value once that’s done properly in terms of your development will be much higher.

Natasha Collins:            I think that’s something that’s really important to realize, because I sent out the final cost of how much it cost us to sell Rainsborough, all fees included. I put that out, I said how much we had paid for your fees, how much we had paid for getting the property done up, how much we paid the agency, all the little things that came into play, and the one thing that people came back to me on… They were like, “Wow, you pay a lot for legal fees.” But my gosh, that transaction was just… It needed it, because otherwise that would’ve fallen apart.

Nishita Gudka:              Yes. It’s interesting that you say that. It is, I think, a bugbear of most legal professionals that legal fees are so disproportionate to the agency fees, and both parties have a part to play. Your agent will go and find you your buyer. But if it falls apart at the legal state, it doesn’t matter how many buyers your agent turns up with. If you can’t get through the legal process because it is a complicated transaction, what are you going to do?

Natasha Collins:            Exactly. We were just in one of those situations… I think we’ll talk about this as kind of a whole, because I wanted to discuss with you the difference between a conveyancer and a solicitor, and that was one of the things that came up during the flat sale that we’ve just done as well. I had really not even thought about it to appreciate that there was a difference between a conveyancer and a solicitor, but I guess there is a difference. Could you explain that?

Nishita Gudka:              All solicitors can be a conveyancer. A conveyancer is somebody who is authorized to deal with a conveyancing transaction. The difference is that a licensed conveyancer, and when I think most people talk about conveyancer, it’s not a solicitor. They mean normally a licensed conveyancer, is a specialist only in a conveyancing part of the legal world. They know all about buying and selling residential properties, and there are some very, very good licensed conveyancers out there.

Nishita Gudka:              You also have legal executives, who have the similar depth of knowledge to solicitors, but not the same breadth of knowledge as solicitors, and they are also authorized to deal with conveyancing transactions. Then you have solicitors who… We have to have a certain breadth of training and a certain depth of training. We have to have our two years and pass certain exams before we can be called solicitors. Your solicitor will have a much broader knowledge of general legal issues, and so if something comes up that is slightly out of the ordinary, a solicitor is usually better equipped to raise those issues and understand that those issues are coming up.

Natasha Collins:            That’s the difference. Would you pay a different cost for a conveyancer and a solicitor? Would there be a different cost associated with that?

Nishita Gudka:              Yes. You would normally expect to pay for more a solicitor than a licensed conveyancer, because you are paying for their broader knowledge base really. But a good conveyancer is probably going to charge you not far off the costs of a solicitor who is doing low value residential transactions, so there’s swings and roundabouts.

Natasha Collins:            So really it doesn’t matter. What you really should do is ask someone what experience they’ve had previously and go with the person who would be able to get you through the deal?

Nishita Gudka:              Absolutely. There is no point in instructing a solicitor for the sake of having a solicitor, who has only ever dealt with one residential transaction in their career. Then you’re better off going with a good licensed conveyancer who has a number of similar types of transactions under their belt. Going back to what we said at the beginning, is understand how complicated your deal is going to be, and make sure whoever you instruct knows what they’re doing.

Natasha Collins:            I think that’s really important. Shall we move onto Rainsborough and talk about that? Now, for those of you who have been following my newsletter and you’ve been following the podcast for a while, Rainsborough House was the property that we’ve just sold, but it’s Chris’ property. The block was part of a shared ownership scheme, and as part of the transaction, for those of you that remember, I said that we had to pay the head leaseholder some, and then we sold on the property so it was all under the freeholder. It got really complicated, and I did start talking about it, but I didn’t do it in too much detail because at the time, we just did not want to jinx that transaction. It was hard enough to get through it at the time.

Natasha Collins:            Shall we talk a little bit more about that, and the pitfalls of shared ownership, because that was certainly one of the toughest properties to get out of ever. Would you say?

Nishita Gudka:              Yes. It absolutely was one of the more fraught residential transactions that I have been involved in. I think going back a step probably, shared ownership on the face of it seems like a fabulous idea. It gives you an opportunity to get some equity into a property without having to have the outlay of buying the whole property. Basically you’re buying a percentage of it and paying rent to the shared ownership landlord for the balance. And you can then buy more and more of your property, more shares. In theory, it seems like a great idea.

Nishita Gudka:              The difficulty is, and I think that a lot of people are not missold the idea of shared ownership, but don’t fully appreciate what it means, is that because you have this much greater involvement from your landlord, when you come to sell, they have a much greater involvement in the entire process, which as we learned on Rainsborough, leads to additional costs and delays.

Natasha Collins:            Definitely one of the biggest problems, and I talked about this when we first decided whether we were going to sell or keep it… To keep it, it needed to be remortgaged onto a buy to let mortgage, then we would have the right to let it out. But at the time, when we got… The problem was there is that when we were getting the new valuation done, we had to go with a valuer who was of the shared ownership provider, so the head leaseholder. Their valuer came back, and at the time I think overvalued the property. The mortgage lender then came in and also did a valuation on it, and they were £70,000 apart, which I mean, now looking back on it, I don’t know how that happened.

Natasha Collins:            We couldn’t ever remortgage that onto the buy to let product to be able to rent it out, so it wouldn’t have ever worked, which was why Chris was then like, “Look, I’m going to sell it.” Then we had to get another valuation, and the clock started ticking.

Nishita Gudka:              I think it’s probably worth going back to the option that you had to rent it out. The vast majority of shared ownership leases will not let you rent out [inaudible 00:18:21] until you’ve acquired the full 100%, which is why you were obtaining those valuations and we were trying to remortgage. If you are looking at a shared ownership as a buy to let investment, it doesn’t work, unless you buy the whole flat outright.

Natasha Collins:            What I was trying to do on Chris’ behalf is, because the property had gone up so much in value since he’d owned it, was get the the remortgage and then the equity from the remortgage to pay off the head leaseholder so that we could change the lease and be able to rent it out. But because the valuations were so far apart, we were never going to be able to do the remortgage and have enough equity to even be able to cover the cost that the shared ownership provider wanted for it. That was an issue.

Nishita Gudka:              It was, and I think that one of the difficulties that you faced was, and you’ve said this, that when you were dealing with the remortgage… The first when that you were doing was trying to acquire 100% of your… Chris was trying to acquire 100% of the lease, and at that point time starts ticking with your landlord. Because that didn’t work out the way we wanted it to work out, you had to start the process in terms of selling the property, and again, then you’re starting again from day zero again, and time starts again, and there is a set period of time which you have to give your landlord a chance to try and sell it on your behalf. And every time it doesn’t work, you have to go through another process and another process has a minimum amount of time which you have to go through. You can go for months without getting to the point where you want to be, which is, “I just want to sell this.”

Natasha Collins:            By August, we realized we couldn’t remortgage it. There wasn’t enough money in it to be able to get Chris out of the shared ownership scheme, let alone get a buy to let mortgage, because the stress test was so high we wouldn’t have been getting enough of an income to do that. Then we gave notice to, or Chris gave notice to the provider to sell the property, to sell his shares in the property in August. By October, they said that it wasn’t possible for them to sell the property.

Nishita Gudka:              That’s selling Chris’ share in the property, so not 100% of the property.

Natasha Collins:            Yeah, that was 65% of the property at the time. That provider came back to us, and when I say us, by the way, I’m meaning Chris. I was literally just on the periphery helping Chris out with this. He’s not a property guy at all. He really didn’t want to be involved in this, and trust me, it’s far too stressful for him. He was fed up with this process by September last year, so come October when they say they can’t sell his 65% share because there’s no market for it, he is… Steam is coming out of his ears at this point.

Natasha Collins:            They couldn’t sell it, so then we had to get permission to put it on the open market, right?

Nishita Gudka:              Yes, exactly, which again, took some time, and more cost, and more time incurred for me to start you with that process as well.

Natasha Collins:            Think about it at this stage. From around July time we had had to get one valuation from a shared ownership provider, which cost £300. We’d also had to do the remortgage valuation as well, which had cost a little bit of money. That wasn’t particularly expensive. I think less than £100. Then that didn’t work, so we had to get the shared ownership provider to market the property, and they did another valuation I think at that point which was £300. Two months later, we’d spent money, we’d moved out of the property in September. We thought that they were going to be showing the property. They said that they had no interest whatsoever. So by October, we’re now paying £2000 a month roughly for a property that’s empty, for them to say, “Okay. No, we’re not doing it.”

Natasha Collins:            Nishita has been involved this whole time. We go out to the market. We put it on the market. And eventually, in January, we get an offer.

Nishita Gudka:              Yes, and that offer was… The buyer wanted to buy 100% of the share. Keep in mind that Chris only had 65%, so we’ve now got a new obstacle to overcome in making sure at completion what the buyer is getting is not just Chris’ share but the additional 35%.

Natasha Collins:            That’s when you stepped in and took over from there. How was the process? For us, it just went on and on and on.

Nishita Gudka:              The problem was the first advisor that the buyer instructed was not experienced in dealing with shared ownership, and was also far too busy to look at the papers that I had sent him. By the time he’d actually clocked what was going on and what the basis of the transaction was, we were probably five, six weeks into it, from having a sales memoranda agreed. In addition to dealing with the buyer, and I’m sorry if I jump around a little bit… In addition to dealing with the buyer, in order to get the consent to sell the property, we had to make an application to the immediate landlord to say that this is what is going on, and they wanted to have a copy of the sales memoranda and of course a copy of the valuation that Natasha and Chris had done.

Nishita Gudka:              That’s going on in the background whilst we are dealing with the buyer and dealing with the buyer’s advisors. Actually, I have to say, for dealing with that little part, your landlord was actually pretty quick, remarkably.

Natasha Collins:            Remarkably.

Nishita Gudka:              We managed to get that piece done. That piece of the jigsaw came through fairly swiftly.

Nishita Gudka:              However, then by the time that the first advisor that the buyer had instructed had twigged what was going on and decided that actually he wasn’t able to deal with it, he then passed it to a colleague who was I think trying to say that, on the basis that it was different advisors, albeit in the same firm, that Chris should pay the abortive legal fees, even though the transaction was not abortive. At this point, I think Chris was getting quite frustrated that it had taken this long to get to a point where the original advisor had realized that he didn’t know how to deal with it.

Nishita Gudka:              We have the second advisor in, and he, to his credit, was much better. He was a licensed conveyancer but did have experienced with shared ownership, and did review the papers fairly quickly, and got to grips with how the transaction was proceeding and understood the fact that Chris only had 65% share, and did not have the full 100% to transfer to his client.

Nishita Gudka:              We then spent quite a lot of time trying to come to an arrangement which the buyer was happy with that would ensure that at the end of the transaction had had 100% share of the flat. I’m still not quite sure what happened or how it happened, but he just wasn’t understanding the risks involved, and in his mind, I think he believed that Chris would just sell him 65% of the property, but take the equivalent of 100% of the value, and that actually is where we found real difficulty, because I was talking to your agent, who was then passing on what I was saying without giving legal advice to the buyer, who then understood and was happy. Then it would go back to his advisor, and he would come back and say, “No, I’m not doing it that way.”

Nishita Gudka:              It was that I found one of the most challenging parts of this transaction because the way we had structured it was risk-free to the buyer, but he was not being advised well enough to allay his fears. And that caused a huge amount of delay, and stress I think for Chris in particular.

Natasha Collins:            It was almost like a game of Chinese whispers. We were hearing different things. Our agent, great agent, she was very on the board and wanted to help as much as she could, but would sometimes be relaying information that wasn’t quite right or maybe she was a couple of hours behind, because it was changing on an hourly basis, what was happening. So that was also heightening the fears of… I guess at one point Chris was like, “I’m not doing this anymore. I’ll pull out of the deal,” even though it was not a good idea, but it was just so stressful.

Natasha Collins:            In the end, what happened, it was that the buyer bought the 65% off of us, and then went for the 35% from the head leaseholder?

Nishita Gudka:              Exactly. We structured it in such a way that it was a contract whereby Chris would transfer his 65%, the buyer would pay the balance directly to your landlord and your landlord’s solicitor, and they would deal with the final memoranda of staircasing, which confirms that he’s now purchased 100%, and also, the transfer of the head lease, which does not have the shared ownership provisions in, directly to the buyer. Everything had to be conditional on each other, because from the buyer’s perspective, and understandably so, he didn’t want to be in a situation where he was taking the 65% from Chris without having the rest of it transferred, and from Chris’ perspective, he wanted to know that this transaction was going to go ahead.

Nishita Gudka:              The whole thing hung together by a couple of conditional clauses in the contract, but also a number of undertakings that had to be given from the landlord’s solicitor via us to the buyer’s solicitor. That’s where complexities come in, and that’s where the time comes in, because you are drafting the undertakings, making sure that they work, you’re chasing people to give the relevant undertakings, and that all takes time. I think it would be very difficult for anybody to be able to do that sort of a transaction for anything like £1000, going back to the sum that you mentioned right at the beginning, because if they are, they are neither not spending enough time on it, somebody else much junior at a much cheaper rate is possibly doing that running around. It could be possible, but I would be very surprised, and I definitely would not be able to do it for that cost.

Natasha Collins:            No, and that particular transaction, as we’ve just been through, and if you’ve been listening to that, thank you for sticking with us, because it was so complicated. I think all the way through it was complicated. I wasn’t speaking too much all the way through, for those of you who remember back to that, because it was just so many moving parts. So much was changing. And that gets me onto the fact that, looking back at it now, we were spending £2000 in hold costs a month because Chris couldn’t let it out, so it was vacant between September and I think… When did he sell it? April.

Nishita Gudka:              May. No, end of April.

Natasha Collins:            End of April.

Nishita Gudka:              No, end… Wait.

Natasha Collins:            That was nine months of hold costs at £2000 per month, which was £18,000 that the pair of us spent on just keeping that property afloat, plus another property. Whilst at the end of it we came out on a plus, and I’ve shown the completion statement, we did come out on a plus with this, we had to have the money to put into that before we started the transaction, because if we hadn’t have had that £20,000 in our savings account, there would’ve been no way we’d have been able to do that deal. No way.

Nishita Gudka:              I think that raises a really useful point, and it applies not just to shared ownership but to any transaction, is plan ahead. Be realistic about timescales. Shared ownership can be complicated, and it can take time. If you do not have the money, as Natasha just said, to subsidize the property, which is what you’re doing, can you afford to get into this sort of a transaction in the first place? Sometimes you just have no choice, and you have to deal with what you have in front of you. If you can, try and plan ahead and try and keep some money aside for these sorts of eventualities. If you don’t spend it, great.

Natasha Collins:            Yeah, I think fantastic.

Nishita Gudka:              It’s very difficult and it’s very frustrating I think for property solicitors, where you’re given a timescale that you know is unrealistic, and unfortunately that’s what people have budgeted for, the unrealistic timescale, and when matters do inevitably take longer than was ever envisaged to complete… When you do what you’ve done, Natasha, and you set out everything and all of the costs, I think people are shocked as to how much it has actually cost them overall.

Natasha Collins:            It was very expensive to get out of that. I mean, we’d do it again… It wasn’t a good investment. It really wasn’t, on reflection. But I think Chris came away with that and he said to me, “Make sure that people understand shared ownership.” He said he’d never get into it again.

Natasha Collins:            It is frustrating, I get it, because then he paid service charge upfront, which he wasn’t happy about doing, and from then, he’s still in this conversation where he’s trying to get the money back out of the head leaseholder, and they are pretending like they don’t know about it. And so it continues. It does continue. And from his point of view, he’s now having to make that decision of how far do I go to get this money back? There is formal complaints being made. But it’s not something that’s just a done thing, it’s closed, that’s it, it’s completed. There’s been a lot of moving parts to it. And so highlighting that…

Natasha Collins:            And still, that’s something that happens when you’ve got a head leaseholder or a freeholder. If you’re a leaseholder and there’s people above you in the transaction, that happens all the time, but you have to be aware that because other people are in the deal, you’ve still got to deal with those people.

Nishita Gudka:              Exactly. It is not uncommon to have your landlord, your freeholder, not playing to the same timescales as you are, and sometimes you need their consent before you can sell. Sometimes you need them to give you certain information about the management of the building before your buyer will agree to buy. Sometimes where you have a share of the freehold, you need the other freeholders to engage with you and say, “Yes, of course we’ll deal with the share transfer and register the new share certificate.” And you need all of those people to assist, and as I said, they may not all be running to the same timescale as you, and that can frustrate a deal, it can delay a deal. You just need to keep that in mind.

Natasha Collins:            Definitely, definitely. And it’s just because you’re dealing with humans. No one’s acting always on the same page that you are. I mean we wanted it to move quickly, but other people weren’t as interested in that, and that’s kind of nature. The nature of the beast.

Nishita Gudka:              Absolutely. Unfortunately, with some types of landlord tenant relationships, the landlord has such a stranglehold on what you can and can’t do with your property that they will have registered restrictions on your leasehold title, so the land registry, it will for example say, “You cannot register a sale of the property unless you have the landlord’s consent.” And in those situations, where your landlord is not playing ball, you’re stuck. There is very little that you can do that’s quick and cost effective to get your landlord to play ball if they don’t want to. There are remedies. There are absolute remedies that you have. But they’re not quick, and they’re not always very cheap.

Natasha Collins:            Definitely not.

Natasha Collins:            Just to wrap up, can I ask you, how can you make the sales or purchase process a smoother ride?

Nishita Gudka:              I think what you need to do is be honest about timescales, and speak to whoever is presenting you about what is actually involved and what you want to achieve, and your realistic timescales, which is really important. If you’re selling, gather as much information as you have about your property as you can. All those electrical safety certificates that you’ve got in drawer somewhere, the energy performance certificate, make sure that’s up to date. Get your original lease, if it’s a leasehold transaction. Gather all of those documents, and give them to your solicitor if that’s who you’re instructing.

Nishita Gudka:              Be responsive and as honest as you can when they send out the property information form to fill in. It may be that sometimes simply ticking the box is not going to provide enough information to your buyer. If so, there’s nothing wrong with asking your solicitor to say, “Can you put a couple of paragraphs to go with this form?” Because giving that information at the outset and giving as full a pack as you possibly can to your buyer hopefully should mean that when your buyer’s representative reads through all of the papers, you have dealt with all of their concerns in one go, and they can say, “Yeah, this is fine. I can recommend this property to my client.”

Nishita Gudka:              If you’re buying the property, make sure again you are as honest as you can be with whoever’s advising you about your realistic timescales. And it may be that you’ve actually told the agent one thing, that, “Yes, of course I can exchange in two weeks,” but the reality is that your finance will not be available for six weeks. But be honest with your representative because there’s solicitor client privilege. We don’t have to tell anybody that stuff, but we should know. If you’re reliant on third party financing, make sure that is in order and that’s available. If you’re going for bridging finance, make sure you know who you’re going to go for for that bridging finance.

Nishita Gudka:              I think the key is, from a solicitor, be as honest as you can with your solicitor, because if we know what you’re thinking and what your goals are, we can manage the transaction a lot more effectively. It may be that you want us to delay it, which does sometimes happen. But from your perspective, at least that means it’s a slightly smoother ride for you. It may not be so good for the person on the other side, but our priority is you.

Natasha Collins:            Those are some fantastic tips. Thank you so much for that, Nishita. I really appreciate it.

Nishita Gudka:              You’re welcome. I know I always enjoy our chats, even when we’re not talking about property.

Natasha Collins:            I’m going to finish off the podcast there, but thank you everybody for listening to us today. If you want to find out more, I’m going to put links to all of the resources and contact details for Nishita below. Make sure that you comment and you like this podcast, and subscribe because it comes out every Tuesday morning. If you want to find out more about me, head on over to www.ncrealestate.co.uk for more information.

Natasha Collins:            Thank you so much for joining me today. I cannot wait to catch up with you again soon.