Buyers Advice

Getting you approved


Whether it's your first home or your 100th buy-to-let investment, CPS are here to find the right property for you and to ensure the whole process of buying is as enjoyable and stress-free as possible.

Below is a simple guide to buying property, we hope it will be of help if you are unfamiliar with the process.

Before you start

What can I afford?

The last few years have been a difficult time to buy, with many banks tightening their purse strings finance has been hard to come by. But things are looking up, many lenders are back in the market and finance is now much more accessible.

Before even starting to look at property you need to know what you can afford, so take a look at our financial services pages, or chat with our financial advisor.

What area do I want?

It's all about Location! Do you want to be right in the middle of things, with restaurants, shops and bars on your doorstep or do you want a country home with nothing but a few cows nearby? If you're an investor, are you going for purely high rental yield or aiming for capital appreciation?

Our staff know pretty much every nook and cranny of the areas in which we work, so if you want to know what area will suit your needs just pick up the phone and give us a call.

What type of property do I want?

This one seems straight forward but there are a few things to consider.

Do you need off-street parking or a garden?

If you aren't scared of a challenge, you may get better value buying a fixer-upper. Or if you plan to have 15 kids, space for a future extension may be useful. There are many different types of property and CPS deal with all of them, our staff know the benefits and drawbacks of different styles of property whether commercial or residential and would be happy to discuss this with you.

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Finding that perfect property


When you have narrowed down the price, area and type of property you want, then it's time to find that dream buy!

The CPS web search allows you to search our extensive portfolio and narrow it down according location, size and price. Alternatively, call into any one of our offices, the internet is a great tool but it's hard to beat a face to face chat with an experience property professional.


When you picked a handful of properties that suit your needs it's time to arrange some viewings. Always book your viewings at least 24 hours in advance, we need this in order to give occupiers fair notice that we will be visiting. However, if you need a viewing quickly, just give us a call and we will do our best to accommodate.

A viewing can be over before you know it so make sure to bring a notepad and camera with you, that way you won't forget which property had the 'lovely fireplace' or 'massive kitchen'. A senior member of CPS staff attends every viewing, we are well acquainted with all our properties so ask plenty of questions. We also recommend visiting the area at different times throughout the week to get an idea of how busy/noisy it gets.


When you have decided on the property you want, the next step is to place a bid. The bidding process can vary depending on the property.

Proof of funds

With all bids we ask for 'proof of funds', this is to ensure that all bidders have sufficient funds to follow through, thus ensuring both bidder and vendor do not waste money on a sale that cannot happen and that prices are not needlessly inflated.


1. Decision in Principle or Mortgage Promise
This is a letter from your lender stating that, provisionally, you should be OK to borrow a certain amount. Our financial advisor can provide you with a decision in principle free of charge.

2. Bank Statement
This is to show that you have either sufficient deposit for your finance, of if buying cash, sufficient funds to purchase the property outright. We understand that it is not always possible or convenient to produce bank statements, so most vendors will accept a letter from an accountant or solicitor.

Standard Bidding

The vast majority of our properties are sold by a standard bidding process whereby any offer is immediately forwarded to the vendor along with proof of funds. It is then the vendor's decision to accept or reject. If there are multiple bidders, we give each bidder fair chance to increase their offer if a higher one has been placed. In cases where bidding continues over an extended period of time we may set a closing date. The vendor always has the final say and can chose the bid they feel is best, not necessarily the highest.

Best and final offers (Sealed Bids)

This most commonly occurs with corporate sales (repossessions) but may also be used when a closing date has been set for bids. A specific date and time will be set and each bidder will submit their best offer in writing (email or letter) along with proof of funds, no other party is made aware of this offer, and after the set time each bid will be considered by the vendor and a winner chosen.

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Sale agreed - almost there

When your bid has been accepted the property is sale agreed.

Booking deposit

For all private sales we take a booking deposit, this can range from £1,500 upwards depending on the value of the property. It is not an extra charge and is deducted from the price of the house, it is held in our client account until the sale completes.

When the booking deposit has been paid the property is removed from the open market*. You will be given a time frame in which to complete the sale, often 6 weeks, but this can vary at the vendor's discretion.

(* When buying a corporate sale the property often remains on the market until contracts have exchanged, we therefore have a legal obligation to continue to market the property and receive any further offers even if the property is sale agreed.)

Sales Memo

When booking deposit has been received we will require details of your solicitor in order to send out a 'sales memo', this document goes to both the buyers and sellers solicitor and contains all the information they need to get started on the legal work.


Here is a basic list of what your solicitor will do during the conveyancing process:

  • Raise questions to the seller, such as who owns the property boundaries, what fixtures and fittings are included and has there been any disputes with neighbours.
  • Check copies of any guarantees on the property, details of planning permissions and building regulation certificates.
  • Check the seller really is the owner of the property and prepare a Report on Title for you.
  • Check local authority searches and plans for the local area.
  • Pay stamp duty tax on the property.
  • Arrange registration of title in your name.

We advise you to instruct your financial advisor to get survey booked as soon as the property is sale agreed.

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The final step


Contracts exchange when both buyer and seller have signed legally binding contracts to confirm they are willing to proceed with the sale, this is often subject to certain conditions. A completion date will also be agreed upon.


When the property completes that's the deal done! The full funds are transferred to the vendors account and keys are released to the new owner.

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