HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BUY A HOME?

New research suggests it takes, on average, six months and 24 days to buy a home.

Please note this is NOT from engaging a Solicitor to Completion of sale! Read on……

The study polled 2,000 buyers to dissect each part of the transaction process. 

It found the single longest element was the exchange of contracts which took an average of five months and 10 days after putting in an offer on a new home - although it some cases, the firm claims, it took up to 25 months.

When starting the home-buying process, potential buyers will spend around 20 hours looking at 16 homes online.

Around four days is then spent waiting for a viewing on a potential purchase, with buyers taking a further four-and-a-half days to put in an offer.

It also emerged the average homebuyer will view their future home three times before making an offer, taking three friends or family members with them to help make the decision.

Once the purchase has been agreed, a further 24 days are needed to secure a mortgage offer, and three days to get a solicitor on board.

After contracts are exchanged, keys are finally delivered after nine days.

Of the 2,000 questioned, around a quarter had made offers which were then rejected, making the process even longer – especially for the 12 per cent who put in unsuccessful bids on three or more properties.

It also emerged London is the area in which it takes the longest to buy a house - an average of eight months, compared to just over five months in Scotland and the North East.

Most of those polled expected the whole process would take just under four months, with more than a fifth believing it would be done and dusted in less than two months.

But due to timings, 14 per cent of buyers admitted they had to compromise on their ideal home when choosing a property. Location was the most common sacrifice, while room size and price followed closely behind.

Here are the study’s figures on each element:

- time spent browsing homes to visit online, before choosing one to buy: 19.46 hours;

- time between finding a home online, and getting a viewing: 3.74 days;

- time between the first viewing and putting in an offer on a new home: 4.47 days;

- time taken, once decided to buy, to get a mortgage offer: 23.94 days;

- time taken, once decided to buy, to find a solicitor: 2.98 days;

- time taken to exchange contracts: 5.34 months or 165.54 days;

- time taken once contracts are exchanged, to get keys: 9.47 days;

FOOTNOTE – here at Equus Property most of our buyers already have a mortgage offer in place and some have cash/available funds – so reduces the time indicated in this poll by their 23.94 days.

We also estimate from Offer to Exchange of Contracts the time to be approx. 3 months although if the property has complications it can take longer. The time from Exchange to Completion (keys being handed over) tends to be a little longer as our owners inevitably have more ‘kit and livestock’ to move (normally 10 - 14 days).

The difference with Equus Property is we have a dedicated senior partner in the business overseeing the sale progression ensuring the process is moved on at a pace whilst the whole chain is kept abreast of matters and identifying any shortfalls before they become unassailable.