Pre auction conveyancing and what to expect with an auction pack

Pre Auction Conveyancing and what to expect with an Auction Pack

Pre auction conveyancing and what to expect with an auction pack

Each month Express Conveyancing assists hundreds of clients with their Auction Property purchase (or sale). We are the go-to Panel Conveyancing Solicitors in England and Wales where auction property conveyancing solicitors are concerned.

To help both clients looking to instruct us on a pre-auction conveyancing title check or those taking the first steps considering auction property, we have put together the following guide which we believe you will find useful to understand the steps you need to consider before committing to buying at auction.

Pre auction conveyancing and what to expect with an auction pack Express Conveyancing

Pre Auction Conveyancing relates and applies mainly in the context of purchasing at a Property Auction and is a significant part of the transaction before you commit to bidding on any property. Despite the significance of the Pre Auction Conveyancing element of the transaction, this is more often than not overlooked by unassuming first time bidders and we aim to explain the reasons why it shouldn’t.

Pre auction xonveyancing and what to expect with an auction pack express conveyancing

Properties are regularly sold at Auction for a plethora of reasons – not all of which are ominous. However, one of the largest and most common errors made by amateur or first-time buyers at auction is becoming swept up in the selection of properties available.

It is not uncommon for auction houses to sell in excess of 50-100 individual properties at a time and therefore bidders regularly bid on several properties until successful.

Regretfully, though, and through experience of having to handle and in isolated severe cases, relaying the bad news of the property they have now committed to purchasing being non-transferable or non-mortgageable, in our opinion this is the worst possible approach.

Careful consideration of each potential purchase is prudent, rather than broad bidding. Thorough due diligence on title, structural surveys, local planning conditions and mortgageability will significantly reduce post-auction difficulties. Beginners would be well-advised to bid selectively, focus on fewer lots, and walk away from purchases that seem questionable upon closer scrutiny. Auction is a fast process that rewards preparation and caution over hurried opportunism.

Our personal recommendation of how to approach an auction –

Be as well informed and definite as possible as to what you are looking for;

To ensure a successful property purchase, it is important to be clear on your objectives and requirements. Consider the following factors:

– Property type: Would you prefer a freehold house or a leasehold flat?

– Condition: Would you be willing to take on a refurbishment project, knowing this would require time and financial investment before any rental income? Or do you prefer a property in good condition, ready to generate income immediately?

– Purpose: Are you looking for a property to live in yourself or as an investment?

– Investment strategy: If an investment, do you want tenants in place, or vacant properties allowing you to select your own managing agent and tenants?

– Funding: Do you have sufficient funds in place for the purchase? Be aware that around one in twenty auction purchases require bridging finance to complete the transaction on time.

While this list is not exhaustive, addressing these key questions early will help screen unsuitable properties quickly. Experienced property investors typically shortlist around five options for more detailed review of legal documentation before deciding which to carry out auction legal pack reviews on. Taking a structured approach from the outset increases the chances of a successful purchase.

What does an auction pack usually contain?

As we have explained on our Auction Property Conveyancing page, Auctioneers always publish (albeit limited in the information) an Auction Pack usually on their website prior to the Auction. Though there are no set guidelines as to what details should be contained within an Auction Pack, you would usually find the following items –

  • Standard Auction Conditions of Sale
  • EPC
  • Title deeds (usually the basic title registers)
  • Any other miscellaneous documents the sellers might or might not hold

Each individual property is different and comes with its unique challenges. It is therefore not possible precisely outline exactly what would or should be available. This is why, you require the help of a specialist auction conveyancing solicitor who will be able to interpret the information supplied, apply it to the property in question and then highlight to you the legal issues affecting the property.

Upon your instruction to us, we will appoint an expert Auction Property Conveyancing Solicitor from our Panel.

What your appointed solicitor will then do as a quick summary are the following –

  1. Review all the documents available within the auctioneers pack.
  2. Highlight any missing/incomplete documents which would otherwise not be picked up by someone without conveyancing experience.
  3. Work out exactly what any additional costs you as the Buyer will be liable to pay on completion (remember it is not uncommon for the Purchaser to pay for Auctioneer’s costs, Seller’s legal costs, other hidden fees (sometimes as much as 3% of the purchase price).
  4. Prepare and formally forward you a report outlining all the technical findings and any recommendations.

How long does the auction legal pack review take to complete?

The short answer is, this depends. Depending on the type of property and the number of auction pack reviews you wish to carry out will dictate how long it will take your appointed auction conveyancing solicitor to carry out the legal work.

Typically speaking, we aim to return most auction reports within two days. If your auction is taking place sooner than that, we may still be able to help so it is always advisable for you to check with our team before disregarding a particular auction or auction property.

Next steps?

If you are ready to instruct or wish to find out more details about our pre auction conveyancing checks, please contact our New Business Team on 0800 799 9892 or email us on

Please also read our article on our top 10 preparation checklist for a property auction.

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