FAQs about buying

Reeds Rains has over 150 years of experience in successfully helping people to find a property to buy.

Property search

Below are the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about buying property.

Where is the best place to search for a property?

Approximately 95% of home movers start their property search online due to its convenience. You can browse the widest number of potential properties available in your chosen location, on your chosen device from the comfort of your armchair. On the Reeds Rains website you can you save your searches and receive email alerts of new properties - so why not register with us today?

How much can I afford to spend?

This will depend on your individual circumstances. We would recommend that you see a mortgage adviser who can help you work out how much could afford each month for your mortgage and any associated insurance costs.

How much does it cost to buy a house?

There are a number of costs to consider when buying a property such as mortgage fees, broker fees, surveys, conveyancing, removal charges, etc. 

Are there any government backed schemes that might help me buy?

Yes. there is a government backed Help to Buy Equity Loan schemes available in England which offer loans of 20% towards the purchase of a new build home, provided you pay 5% deposit and raise the remaining funds via a mortgage of at least 25% of the value of the property.

Whilst the recent Help to Buy Equity Loan scheme that launched in 2013, came to an end on 28th February 2021, there remains the Help to Buy Equity Loan (2021-2023) scheme which is available for purchases from April 2021, and will run until March 2023. This is only available to first time buyers.

What is stamp duty land tax?

When you buy a residential property in England and Northern Ireland over a certain price you have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). The cost of stamp duty will vary depending on the price of your chosen property and your reason for buying it. 

There are currently reduced rates on Stamp Duty depending on the price of the property. Find out more about the Stamp Duty Land Tax and the Stamp Duty Holiday.

How do I know how much to offer?

You could look at recently sold, comparable property in the local area to get a feel of what property is generally selling for. Speak with the team in your local Reeds Rains branch for their opinion on your offer, and whether they believe it will be successful. They will have an idea of what the seller of the property will accept.

What does exchange of contracts mean?

Exchange of contracts is the point at which you are legally bound to buy the house and nobody can back out of the transaction.

Does offering on a property commit me to buying it?

No. You are not legally bound to buy a property in the UK until you exchange contracts, usually at the end of the sale. However, your financial adviser will be able to talk you through when your offer becomes legally binding as there are some exceptions.

What are the different types of survey and what do they do?

There are three main types of survey which are explained in a brochure produced by our sister company, e.surv Chartered Surveyors. The lender you choose may also request you have a survey if they think the property has structural problems. 


Your initial mortgage appointment is without obligation. Embrace Financial Services normally charge a fee for their services; however, it is payable only on the submission of your mortgage application. The fee will depend on your circumstances but the standard fee is £549. Complex cases usually attract a higher fee. Embrace Financial Services will discuss and agree the fee with you prior to submitting any mortgage application.