Six top tips for a super-fast property exchange for the super-rich

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Sealed bids, gazumping and ultra-fast exchanges are back in the high-end London property market and buyers are having to move quickly to secure their sale. Islay Robinson, the group CEO of high-net-worth mortgage broker, Enness Global Mortgages, has penned his six top tips to help with a quick exchange.

1. Paperwork

If you’re purchasing with a mortgage, get your paperwork in order. This seems obvious but many people put it off until it’s needed and this can cause delays. Banks need to know who you are, how you made your money, that you can afford to pay it back and that you meet their regulatory requirements.

Just because you’re a high-net buyer, you’re not exempt and the relevant and required paperwork is non-negotiable. It may seem like a formality but in many cases, it can be a lengthier process because you are a high-net individual when compared to your average buyer.

2. Assemble a team.

Drawing on the expertise of industry professionals is the best way to get your sale across the line at speed. When looking to do so you will need a broker, search agent, lawyer, tax adviser, surveyor and insurance broker and all of them need to be working in unison be aligned to succeed. If they have worked together before even better, as they can hit the ground running right from the off.

If you have one that you know is good, ask them to recommend the rest from their network as this will also help create a more focussed team of industry professionals.

3. Don’t scrimp on lawyers.

Buying a house at any level of the market is expensive and it can be tempting to save money at certain points in the process. Conveyancing is hugely commoditised but don’t fall for the trap of a cheap legal adviser.

Lawyers protect you, negotiate for you and complete a huge amount of the work. You need someone who knows the market and will carry out a thorough and professional job. Again, asking for a recommendation is probably the best tip in terms of finding a good legal representative.

4. Have a deal point guard.

When buying a home there is a huge amount of work that falls between the ‘major stages’ of a transaction. The nitty-gritty such as competing views, lots of emails and negotiation. Having one person moving the deal on, responding to delays, solving problems and communicating across the board to all involved is key. In this instance, a good broker is worth their weight in gold and will happily fill this role for you and this is something we teach from the ground up at Enness Global.

5. Preempt and predict.

Title issues, delayed paperwork, insurance problems, holidays, sick days, unexpected quirks. Most transactions will fall foul to at least one or two of these unforeseen issues. Make sure you consider and preempted as much as possible. You don’t have to have a complete crisis plan in place but simply having an idea of how to deal with each issue or who to turn to can help. Being on the back foot will cause delays so responding to problems quickly is key.

If you’re in the middle of a transaction, try and make yourself more available than you would perhaps otherwise be, keep your phone on at all times and try to prioritise. We’re not saying don’t go for those 18 holes to relax, just be contactable when you do.

6. Communicate

Open and regular communication with the “other side” is key. Delays are tolerated if they are disclosed transparently. However, declined calls, unanswered emails and the cold shoulder are not. Acting in such a manner can create doubt, which will lead to a lack of trust and this can result in a deal-breaking down and the seller opting for another buyer.

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