I am buying a new house, but will be abroad on an extended business trip when final contracts are due to signed. What should I do?
You are never sure when contracts are likely to be exchanged and a completion date agreed but, naturally, it is not a good idea to be abroad when you are due to complete.
However, in order to facilitate an exchange of contracts in your absence you can either visit your Solicitor before leaving for your business trip and sign all documentation well in advance – leaving strict instructions as to the basis on which the Solicitor is authorised to proceed in your absence – or you may grant a Lasting Power of Attorney dealing with your Property and Affairs, restricting the authority to the appointed Attorney to simply deal with the signing of all documentation relating to your purchase of your new property.
Unless there are major outstanding items on which your Solicitor will need your specific instructions, or indeed no papers have in fact been received before you go away, then it is normal for you to give your Solicitor strict instructions as to the basis on which you would be happy to proceed.
If you are only buying a property and are in no hurry to move in, then ensure your Solicitor has the relevant amount of money made available to him to allow him to complete on your behalf if you are still abroad.