Why is this important?
This is the key moment in any property transaction. Once the contracts are exchanged between the solicitors acting for buyer and seller, the sale is definitely going ahead.
The two solicitors will liaise over the contents of the contract, reading them out in a recorded conversation to ensure each contract is the same. Once they have agreed that the contracts are in place and that each copy has been signed, the seller’s solicitor will ask the buyer’s solicitor to pay a deposit (usually 10 percent of the purchase price). The solicitors will confirm on the agreed completion date and they will arrange to swap the signed contracts and the deposit.