This page is targeted at housing professionals. Our main site is at www.shelter.org.uk

Buying a home

This content applies to England & Wales

The steps involved in buying a home.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) has published guides for prospective homeowners. The ‘How to buy a home’ guide offers practical advice on the process of buying a home. The 'How to sell a home' guide may assist those who wish to sell their existing property before moving.

Types of occupation

The different ways in which land and property can be owned: freehold, leasehold and commonhold; summary of key features of each. 

Forms of ownership

The main forms of ownership for owner-occupied property. 

Mortgage lenders

Mortgage lenders, affordability and mortgage regulation. 

Types of mortgage

Information on different types of mortgages available. 

Interest rates

Interest rates available from mortgage lenders. 

Cost of buying a home

Other costs prospective purchasers should be prepared for when buying a home. 

Making an offer

The process of making an offer for a property. 

Valuations, surveys and Energy Performance Certificates

Information about valuations, surveys and Energy Performance Certificates. 

Legal work: Buying a home

The fees solicitors dealing with a house purchase may charge, and conveyancing. 

Contract terms and exchange

Contract terms, and issues around the exchange of contracts. 

Problems with estate agents

Common issues and problems buyers may encounter in disputes with estate agents. 

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