Melissa Windeatt

Conveyancing Executive, ACILEX

DATE PUBLISHED: 03 Jul 2024 LAST UPDATED: 03 Jul 2024

What information is required at an early stage of a property purchase?

To improve the disclosure of ‘material information’ at an early stage in the conveyancing process, the National Trading Standards (NTS) has published updated guidance to Estate Agents and Landlords with a view to clarifying what information should be shared at the outset of a property sale/purchase.

NTS Guidance – Parts A, B and C

Part A Guidance was issued in May 2022 which provided that certain details for all properties are required, regardless of that property’s location.

Part B and C Guidance was issued more recently in November 2023. Part B concerns utilities (and similar) where non-standard information would affect someone’s decision to continue with the potential purchase; and this is required for all properties.

Part C concerns material information which may be pertinent, depending on whether the property is affected by the information.

 

 

 

What is ‘material information’?

‘Material information’ = information that the average person requires in order to make an informed decision as to whether to continue with a purchase transaction. Such information should not be hidden, or excluded, on property listings or during any part of the purchase process.

Material information can be positive or negative in nature but must be disclosed to ensure that only buyers with a genuine interest in purchasing the property will enquire, view, place an offer or continue the conveyancing process.

All information provided within a property listing must not be misleading; it must be honest and accurate.

Part A Material Information – what is included?

  1. Tenure – whether the property is freehold, leasehold, commonhold, shared ownership or a non-traditional tenure.
  2. Council Tax band
  3. Asking price

Part B Material Information

  1. Physical characteristics of the property
  2. Utilities – services and provider details
  3. Parking information
  4. Number and type(s) of rooms

Part C Material Information

  1. Building safety (for more information see our Building Safety Act 2002 blog)
  2. Restrictions and rights
  3. Flood and erosion risk
  4. Planning permission and proposals for development
  5. Property accessibility and adaptations
  6. Coalfield or mining area

(non-exhaustive list)

If you require further detailed information on the Material Information requirements, please consult the National Trading Standards information here.

What are the benefits of disclosing material information at an early stage?

  • It can help the Estate Agent to sell the property quicker because all information is available for the Buyer at the outset and this should avoid surprises later, leading to reduced likelihood of failed sales.
  • Money saved from less failed sales.
  • Transaction timescales are reduced.
  • You are less likely to encounter failed transactions where a buyer decides to discontinue the purchase as a result.
  • In a circumstance where you are both selling and buying a property in a linked transaction, you will benefit from receiving all material information on the property being purchased, as well has having the obligation to provide the same.

Where do I stand as a property Seller?

We would recommend collating the relevant documents and/or copies as soon as you decide that you wish to sell a property. These may include:

  • Title deeds/property deeds and any Lease(s).
  • Building Regulations/planning permissions.
  • Electrical and gas safety/installation certificates and records.
  • Details of utilities

How can Ellis Jones help?

At Ellis Jones, our lawyers and conveyancers specialise in dealing with a variety of property matters and we have a wealth of experience in advising and assisting clients with their sales, purchases and other property transactions.

If you would like to discuss your property matter requirements, please get in touch with our Residential Conveyancing Department or our Commercial Property Department or by calling 01202 525333.

How can we help?

When you submit this form an email will be sent to the relevant department who will contact you within 48 hours. If you require urgent advice please call 01202 525333.

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