Useful terminology

There are a number of terms related to the home buying process that you may not have heard of.  Click on one of the terms below to read it’s description.


Completion is the final stage of the homebuying process when the money is transferred between the buyer and seller. At this stage the keys are handed over and you can start moving into your new home.


The contract is a document which sets out the agreement between Redcastle Homes and the property buyer/owner in relation to the purchase/sale of your home. There are two identical contract documents; one to be signed by the seller and the other by the purchaser. Once the contracts are signed and exchanged, both sides are legally bound to complete the transactions.


Conveyancing is the transfer of the legal title of a property from one person to another.


Deposit is a payment made towards the price of a property paid by the buyer on exchange of contracts.

Exchange of contracts

This is the stage both buyer and seller sign identical contracts. The contracts are then formally exchanged between solicitors and the deal become legally binding.


Freehold is the ownership of property or land, and all immovable structures attached to such land.

Land registry fees

Land Registry fees are paid to the Government through your Solicitor to register the ownership of the property with the Land Registry. The fees charged by land registry to do this are based on the purchase price of the property.


A form of land tenure or property tenure where one party buys the right to occupy land or a building for a given length of time.

Local searches

This is undertaken as part of the conveyancing process by your solicitor or conveyancer and refers to the provision of specific information about the property and the surrounding area. Enquiries will be sent out to local authorities to ensure there are no problems affecting the land and locality of which you are buying.


A mortgage is a loan taken out from a bank or building society, etc. to purchase a property or land. The loan is ‘secured’ against the value of your home until it is paid off.

Mortgage valuation survey

A property will be valued by your mortgage lender before making you a mortgage offer. There will be a fee to pay to your lender which can vary depending on the purchase price and lender.

National Housebuilding Council

NHBC is the UK’s leading standard-setting body and provider of warranty and insurance for new homes. Their role is to work with the house-building industry to raise the standards of new homes and to provide consumer protection for homebuyers. NHBC/LABC inspectors carry out spot checks and regular examinations on all properties at various stages of construction and will also provide the 10 year Buildmark Warranty.

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT)

This refers to the Government tax on the purchase price of the property. This amount will vary depending on the value of the property. Your solicitor will handle these payments on your behalf.

Title deeds

The Title Deeds are the legal documents which prove ownership of your new home.