Coronavirus - Can I move house?
hop™
move barometer
Current status: Green - Proceed with Caution
(as of )

This ranking represents our assessment of the current guidance about whether you can move house at the moment, and if you can’t, what steps you can be taking now, to get ready to move when restrictions are lifted, and to do so safely. Please note this status is for indication only. It does not represent legal advice or official advice and should not be relied on. You must seek independent advice from a lawyer before proceeding with any transaction.

Current Government guidelines on Moving Home during the Coronavirus Outbreak can be found here.

What does this mean?

Green

Proceed with caution

Transactions can proceed, subject to safeguards, shielding and social distancing rules

Red

Stop

Transactions currently banned for the foreseeable future.

Red / Amber

Get ready

Moving not currently advised except in limited circumstances but lockdown restrictions could be relaxed within the next 4 weeks

Amber

Slow down

Tightened lockdown rules may be imposed in the next 4 weeks which could make it more difficult to move.

How do I progress my house sale or purchase during lockdown?

What can I do?

The good news is that much of the work which needs to happen to sell a house can happen remotely, without the need for face to face meetings or people visiting your house.

All of these tasks can continue during lockdown. Ask your estate agent and solicitor to progress as many of these as possible for you.

If you are a seller it can be a good idea to get some of the conveyancing paperwork done before a buyer is found.

This will mean there is less to do once lockdown is released and there is a higher chance of the transaction completing.

What can't I do?

Tasks which require face to face meetings or visiting a property become very difficult in a lockdown situation, and Government advice is clear in these circumstances. Unless the property is vacant, if at all avoidable, completions should be delayed. Even for vacant properties, additional steps should be put in place to keep the home moving process as safe as possible. These rules are in place for your safety, and the safety of others and should be adhered to, in all but the most exceptional circumstances.

Broadly speaking the things which either can’t happen during lockdown or are more difficult are:

  • Physical property viewings
  • Signing and witnessing deeds
  • Completion – moving house

Some estate agents and solicitors already have systems in place to help navigate rounds these problems, such as virtual viewings. Ask about these.

Some practicalities to consider

Until we have a vaccine or cure for Covid-19, every transaction will carry some element of risk. This does not mean that sales can’t take place. It does mean that different steps will be appropriate to reduce the risk. Some of the steps which are being discussed include:

Take advice from your estate agent or solicitor about the best course of action for your move.


How could a Home Owner’s Passport help?

For Home Movers:
If you are thinking of buying or selling, a hop report can help get things moving, even if we are still in lockdown.
Sellers - Get ahead of the game by getting a lot of the paperwork done without having to visit your solicitor.
Buyers - Get intel about the property you are interested in, whether or not you can currently view it.

For Estate Agents:
A hop report can help keep transactions moving, safely and remotely. Getting your sellers Move Ready by completing the Conveyancing Forms included in the report will help deals progress faster once lockdown restrictions are relaxed.