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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why do I need to get Searches?

A: If you are buying with a mortgage then Searches are a requirement of your Mortgage Lender, they will need to ensure that their financial risk is mitigated.

Searches contain information that can seriously affect the value of a property and your enjoyment of living there.

Buying a property without searches would be like driving a speeding car on a busy icy road without wearing a seat belt.

Q: I'm Buying with Cash, do I still need Searches?

A: The risk is entirely yours.

It would be unwise not to buy searches as you could be buying a property for far too much money should there be anything adverse that you were unaware of. You could be buying into a nightmare of expense.

If you are in a rush and need to get a quick deal through then our Cash Buyer Diligence Check will deliver 70% of the Local Authority Search answers and insure the rest in as little as 24hrs.

Q: Will these duplicate reports that my conveyancer might order?

A: No. The reports that we make available are the same that a conveyancer would order and the results are shared with them so that they don't have to order any themselves.

When a conveyancer buys the reports they are using your funds, so you are well within your rights to buy them yourself when you are ready.

Q: When should I buy my Searches for a conveyance?

A: It is wise to get your environmental report as early in the transaction as possible so that you can ensure that you are happy to proceed with the purchase.

The Local Authority Search and the Drainage & Water Report should be ordered as soon as a contract has been sent to your conveyancer.

Q: How long will my searches take to come back?

A: The environmental report will be completed within a few hours or up to 2 working days at most.

The Drainage & Water report can take up to 6 working days.

The Local Authority Search will vary depending on which local authority the property is within and whether you opt for a Council Sourced Search or a Regulated Search.

We update the national turnaround times for all local authority areas across England and Wales in our website on our Turnaround Warnings page. These are updated every Tuesday.

Q: Why come to Property Searches Direct?

A: We enable you to get involved with the process and discover risks for yourself so that you can decide whether you wish to proceed with a purchase.

We enable you to get the results far sooner for earlier decision-making to save wasted time and expense.

By working with us and your conveyancer we help to reduce transaction timescales significantly.

It's your money that you are ploughing into the property and it's your money used to buy the searches no matter who orders them, so why should you not get to see the results sooner?

Q: I don't know where to start or what to do can you help?

A: Absolutely we can. Just pick up the phone or use our web chat facility and we will guide you through all things searches.

Q: How can I find out about flood risks at a property?

A: Use our free-to-use Hazard Checker to see what environmental risks exist in the postcode area. This will help you to ask pertinent questions of the homeowner and/or estate agent that may or may not satisfy your concerns.

Environmental reports that screen for numerous risks are available in our shop.

Q: Isn't this something that my conveyancer will do?

A: If you wish to put them in funds and wait for them to order searches for you, you can.

You will not see the results until they are ready to report to you and so you could be waiting until nearer the end of the transaction to see the results.

If you don't like the results you will have wasted weeks, if not months, of time, let alone spent more money than you might have needed to.

If you have a question that we have not covered, please email us at and we shall get back to you as soon as possible.


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