Home Move FAQ and Jargon Buster

Here you will find frequently asked questions and explanations of some of the jargon and legal language associated with the home moving process.

It is not uncommon for property transactions to take 10-12 weeks, but delays can occur. Brevis believes in transparency and our aim is to keep you informed of our progress and any delays along the way.

We breakdown the stages of the process into milestones so our clients can keep track. Below are our home buy and sell milestones. Within each milestone there are tasks for either you to complete or for Brevis to complete. We can also be actively working on more than milestone at a time as we progress through.

Milestones in buying a home


Home buy milestones

It is not uncommon for property transactions to take 10-12 weeks, but delays can occur. Brevis believes in transparency and our aim is to keep you informed of our progress and any delays along the way.

We breakdown the stages of the process into milestones so our clients can keep track. Below are our home buy and sell milestones. Within each milestone there are tasks for either you to complete or for Brevis to complete. We can also be actively working on more than milestone at a time as we progress through.

Milestones in selling a home


Home sale milestones

A Help to Buy ISA is a Government backed scheme aimed at boosting your savings toward buying your first home. If you put money into a Help to Buy ISA the Government will, when you use those savings to buy a home, top up your savings by adding a 25% bonus. The maximum government bonus you can receive is £3,000. The maximum amount you can save into the account is £200 each month.

The Help to Buy scheme offers a loan where the government lends first-time buyers money to buy a newbuild home. In return for the loan the Government will take a mortgage over your home. This mortgage will be based on the percentage of the purchase price you borrow from the Government. When you sell your home, you must repay the same percentage of the sale price as the initial equity loan. This means that if you take out an equity loan for 20% of the purchase price then you must repay 20% of the price at which you sell. If the value of your property has increased, the amount you have to pay back will likely be more than you originally borrowed.

There are certain criteria to be met in order to qualify to use the scheme.

The Help to Buy loan is interest free for the first 5 years but you are required to pay a £1 monthly management fee by Direct Debit. After the end of the interest free period, and until you repay the loan in full, you will be required to pay:

  • The £1 monthly management fee
  • Monthly interest at the rate of 1.75% per year of the equity loan amount

The interest payable will rise each year. The increase will be based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) plus 2%. The payments due on the Help to Buy Loan are in addition to the payments you are required to make to your mortgage lender.

A Shared Ownership property is essentially a combination of buying and renting. You will own a share of the property and pay rent to a Housing Association on the part you don’t own. Shared ownership properties are always leasehold. This applies irrespective of whether the property is a house or a flat. The lease will contain restrictions which you will need to follow. The rent on the share you don’t own will be reviewed every year and will usually increase.

Some properties which are Shared Ownership can be located in what is known as a ‘designated protected area’ – These properties can only be bought by buyers who have a connection to the local area and in some cases you will only be able to purchase up to 80% of the property. When you come to sell, you may also be limited to selling back to the landlord, or another eligible person the landlord nominates.

Your Local Housing Association will be able to provide more detailed information or you can visit: www.gov.uk/affordable-home-ownership-schemes/shared-ownership-scheme

Owning a freehold property means that you own the whole of that property including the land it is built on and any rights which come with it (like access or parking for example), for an unlimited period of time. You are also free to enjoy and do with the property as you wish (within reason and subject to things like planning regulations)

Owning a leasehold property means you only own the property itself and not the rest of the building around it or the land it sits on. The building and the land are owned by the landlord. Leases are also usually only for a limited amount of time, for example 99 years, and you will likely have restrictions on what you can do with your property during that time.

Aside from any additional legal fees due to the added complexity of buying a leasehold property, there are additional property searches and information that should be obtained, such as obtaining information about the land the property sits on or in the case of a flat, the building the property is situated within and who owns it, and information about the lease and other agreements attached to the property you are buying.

Often the parties involved such as the leasehold management company or the buildings owner often charge for this information, which you should take into account as this can be on average £200-400 and sometimes more. Brevis will obtain and confirm the exact cost once the process is under way and contact has been made with the appropriate organisations, as the amount each charges varies on a property-by-property basis.

There are often additional costs associated with owning a leasehold property and you can find more information here

Property Searches are a collection of reports which tell us lots of things about the property and surrounding area. These reports include things like the risk of flooding and ground stability as well as information about nearby planning permissions and any restrictions you might have in developing your new home.

Please note that all information provided in this FAQ is for general reference only. It should not be used as a sole or definitive source, nor is it intended to be used for decision making in place of appropriate advice from a qualified legal professional. As such the information is provided as-is and Brevis cannot accept any responsibility or liability for any loss or damage resulting from any errors or ommission in, or any reliance on, information contained in this guide.