Research shows that the time taken to buy a property has increased since before the pandemic.

According to Rightmove, it currently takes an average 150 days for a buyer to complete a purchase after agreeing a sale − 50 days longer than in 2019. Investec insiders say the delay in conveyancing is being exacerbated by a high demand for property and a rising base rate environment which means some buyers want to act now to secure mortgages.

This means efficiency is critical. Here, experts in the Investec network explore ways that brokers may be able to help clients to speed up their purchase.

1. Understand how off-market purchases work

When it comes to the search process, a number of clients are making off-market purchases so that they don’t have to wait to find a property that is advertised for sale. The conveyancing process is usually unaffected.

“The property market in the UK can be difficult to navigate because there is not a centralised list of all the available properties for sale and selling agents may only cover particular areas,” says Caspar Harvard-Walls, Partner at buying agent Black Brick Property Solutions.

“Since the beginning of 2022, more than 50% of the properties Black Brick has acquired for clients have been sourced ‘off market’ and this is a trend we see increasing. For clients looking to buy a property, a buying agent will have access to opportunities that never hit the open market,” Caspar says.

2. Choose the right partners

Working with the right team of partners is vital in ensuring the process runs efficiently. As Caspar highlights, good organisation can make the difference between your client having their offer accepted or declined. “Sellers and estate agents can be wary of a buyer who does not look organised,” he says.

“We recently won a sealed bid (where multiple buyers offered on a property) even though our client did not put forward the highest offer. The seller and his agent were impressed by how organised we were and felt confident that the deal would proceed smoothly.”

Laura Conduit, a Partner at independent law firm Farrer & Co, agrees that being proactive is key. The sooner a buyer can bring on board legal support, the better, she says. “Ideally, lawyers should be appointed before a property is even found or a deal agreed.”

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Peter Izard, Head of Intermediary Mortgages Business Development, Investec

Investec can often provide an agreement in principle within days.

3. Understand which banks offer dual legal representation

When selecting a lawyer, your client may wish to explore whether they can use dual legal representation, which allows an approved legal firm to act for both the buyer and the bank during the mortgage process. It has the potential to shorten the time required for legal checks.

Ensure you understand which lenders are currently offering this service, and what that could mean for your clients. At Investec we recently partnered with LMS (a provider of conveyancing panel management services) to offer dual representation.

4. Seek a holistic view of affordability

If your client has found a great opportunity before selling their existing property, they may still be able to move ahead with mortgage approval.

At Investec, we have been able to help several clients in this position because we take a more tailored approach to affordability assessments than some other lenders.

“At Investec we can look at wealth holistically,” explains Peter Izard, Head of Business Development Intermediary Mortgages at Investec. “This means that we can offer flexible lending solutions that meet your clients’ specific needs. Therefore, if your client has found their dream home before selling their current property but can demonstrate that they can afford both mortgages until they are able to sell, we can look to provide finance and a tailored repayment plan in order to help them move quickly and seize that opportunity.”

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Peter Izard, Head of Intermediary Mortgages Business Development, Investec

We pride ourselves on our deep relationships with our broker partners and build a full understanding of their clients' needs to ensure a smooth transaction.

5. Work with a lender that understands complex income profiles without delay

You may be able to save time by working with lenders who specialise in providing mortgages to high-net-worth individuals.

Peter explains: “High-net-worth individuals often have incomes originating from multiple sources, such as foreign currencies, bonuses and investment portfolios. Some lenders may not be able to take this income into consideration, which can delay finding an appropriate mortgage. At Investec, our private bankers work with individuals from different professional sectors and understand their unique income profile. This helps us tailor loans and repayment plans on a case-by-case basis.”

6. Make sure your lending partner can move swiftly

Finally, when choosing a lender, it is important to look at how they operate as well as what solution they can provide.

“Thanks to our credit team’s daily meetings, Investec can often provide an agreement in principle within days,” says Peter. “We also pride ourselves on our deep relationships with our broker partners and build a full understanding of their clients’ needs to ensure a smooth transaction.”

Could we help you with an urgent mortgage case for a high-net-worth individual? Get in touch today.


Disclaimer:  YOUR PROPERTY MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE. Investec residential mortgages are only available for residential properties in England or Wales and are primarily available to UK residents and subject to eligibility.

Investec works with a number of trusted advisors through its client network. Investec does not recommend or endorse any network member or service. Clients will need to assess the suitability of a network member’s services for their own needs and conduct their own due diligence. Members of Investec’s network may have their own eligibility criteria, service fees and terms and conditions that Investec does not provide. Engagement with a network member is at a client’s own risk and Investec does not accept any liability or responsibility directly or indirectly for any losses that may be incurred. Investec does not earn or pay any fees through the network.