The term Conveyancing is the legal term that applies to the buying and selling of property or land.   There are numerous terms associated with this process which can sometimes be confusing to those clients.   A simple A to Z of the most common of these would include:


A mortgage loan.


Sale of property to the highest bidder, who, on succeeding at the bid is legally bound to buy the home. 10% of purchase price must be paid on completion of bidding.

Annuity Mortgage:

A mortgage where interest and part of the loan is repaid each month.

Booking Deposit:

Nominal refundable deposit paid subject to contract (private treaty only).

Bridging Loan:

This is a temporary loan provided to you in a situation where you wish to buy a property before you have sold your own.

Capital Gains Tax:

Capital Gains Tax (CGT) is chargeable on gains arising on the disposal of assets. Any form of property including an interest in property (e.g. a lease) is an asset for CGT purposes.


Where a seller is dependent on the sale of their property to complete the purchase of another.


Is when all legal transactions have taken place and the ownership of the property is legally passed on to the buyer.

Contents Insurance:

Insurance which covers the loss of or damage to your possessions within the property (often taken out as part of building insurance).


The final legal transfer of a property when the outstanding balance is paid to the seller and the buyer receives the keys of the property.


Title deeds of property pledged as security against the repayment of the loan.


The written legal agreement between the vendor and the buyer with regard to the property.


The legal work involved between the seller and the buyer as carried out by a solicitor.


Legal documents signifying the owner's legal entitlement to the property.


A sum of money (usually 10% of the property value) paid by the buyer on execution of contracts.

Early Redemption Fee:

This is a fee associated with the early termination of a mortgage (before the full term is complete).

Endowment Mortgage:

Where the borrower takes out an insurance policy designed to repay the loan either on death or at some other time in the future. Only the interest is paid off the loan. Nothing is paid off the capital until the policy matures.


Difference between value of property and the amount of any loans secured against it.

Exchange of Contracts:

Where both buyer and vendor are legally bound to the transaction.

Fixed Rate Mortgage:

Where repayments on a mortgage are paid for a fixed rate for an agreed period of time.

Fixtures & Fittings:

Any additional non-structural items included or excluded in the purchase of a property e.g. carpets, curtains, etc.


Ownership of property and the land it stands on.

Ground Rent:

The annual rent (usually low) paid on a leasehold property.

Indemnity Bond:

An insurance bond taken out as additional security to cover loan amounts of over 75% approximately of the property value.


Insurance is required by all lending institutions to protect their interest covering any structural damage to the property.

Property Registration Authority Fee:

A fee paid to register ownership of a property.

Life Assurance:

All lending institutions require the mortgage holder to have an insurance policy in place to cover a fixed amount of the loan in the event of death.

Listed Building:

This is a building that has specific architectural or historic interest, which cannot be altered in any way without planning permission.


Where the site of a property is leased usually for a long number of years subject to a ground rent (usually low).

Loan Offer:

A formal document approving a buyer's mortgage with the terms and conditions that are applied.

Local Authority Search:

The buyer's solicitor carries out searches with the local council regarding any outstanding issues or future developments that would affect the property.


A loan made against the security of the property.


A Bank, Building Society or other lender who lends the money for the mortgage.

Mortgage Protection:

Life Assurance cover designed to clear your borrowing in the case of death.

Mortgage Rate:

The standard variable interest rate quoted by all mortgage lenders.

Mortgage Term:

This is the number of years over which the mortgage must be repaid.


An amount of money offered from a buyer for a property.


Payment of a mortgage loan in full.


The agreed price at which a vendor is willing to sell a property.

Sale Agreed:

This status exists when the sale of the property has been provisionally agreed pending exchange of contracts.


legal investigation to establish whether charges exist over a given property and to determine if it is affected by planning applications etc.

Stamp Duty:

A Government tax payable by purchasers.


A detailed inspection of a property to check its condition conducted by a qualified surveyor or architect.


The period of time (years) over which a mortgage is repaid.


The ownership of the property.


A deed which transfers ownership of a property.


Inspection of a property giving a professional opinion of market value.

Value Added Tax (VAT):

VAT is a consumer tax. It is collected by VAT registered traders on their supplies of goods and services. It is currently levied on New Homes but not second hand residential homes.


The person/s who own and are selling the property.