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sold subject to contract explained

Published: 05/08/2022

Subject to Contract (STC) refers to a stage in the property buying process where an offer has been put forward and verbally accepted by the seller, but the sale has yet to be legally binding. This stage is crucial for both the seller and the buyer as it allows all parties to ensure everything is in order before the final commitment is made. In this blog, we'll take a closer look at what STC means for both the seller and the buyer.

What Does STC Mean for the Seller?

When a property is marked as "Sold STC," an offer has been put forward and accepted, but the sale is not yet complete. The property's listing may be removed from the market, but it is still visible to other prospective buyers. This status update is simply a way for the real estate agent to indicate that a sale is in progress, but the property is not yet off the market.

At this point, solicitors begin the conveyancing process, which involves transferring ownership from the seller to the buyer. This process involves both parties providing information and answering questions about the property, such as the title, the contract, and any outstanding issues. During this stage, either party may still pull out of the sale, or a new buyer may come along and make a higher offer, known as "gazumping."

What Does STC Mean for the Buyer?

Before the buyer signs the contracts, their solicitor and surveyor will provide them with all the necessary information about the sale. This includes details about the mortgage, searches, and any queries regarding the title, property, or contract. A survey may also be arranged to check the physical aspect of the property and ensure that there are no hidden issues.

The buyer must be fully aware of all the information before signing the contracts because once the agreements are exchanged between solicitors, the sale becomes legally binding. This means that the buyer is committed to the purchase and cannot change their mind unless there are serious problems with the property or the lease contains some onerous clauses.

The subject-to-contract stage is an important part of the property-buying process as it allows everyone to ensure everything is in order before proceeding to the final commitment. It's a nerve-wracking time for both the seller and the buyer, but it's designed to ensure that the transaction is correct for everyone involved.

In conclusion, subject to contract (STC) is a crucial stage in the property buying process that provides both the seller and buyer an opportunity to ensure that everything is in order before the final commitment is made. The real estate agent's job is to assist in the flow of information between the parties and to ensure that everyone is fully aware of all the necessary information.

Circa London is an Estate Agents London, if you are looking to buy luxury London property, call us and we will be delighted to assist you in your search. 
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