Buying off plan

A guide to buying off-plan

Buying a home 'off-plan' means that you are agreeing to buy a new home before it is built.

Buying your next new home off-plan could help you to beat price rises and increasing mortgage costs. It’s a terrific way to get a good deal on your new home. It is also worth remembering that government schemes like Help to Buy are available on new builds, whether you buy off-plan or not.

Here is our guide to how to go about buying your new home ‘sight unseen’.

  • Research properties and the developer carefully. Check online feedback from previous developments and make sure images in marketing materials match up with developments already built.
  • When you have found your development speak to your mortgage advisor. Many mortgage offers are only valid for six months. If your build takes longer to complete you may have to reapply for your mortgage.
  • Reserve your home and pay the reservation fee
  • Appoint a conveyancer or solicitor to deal with your side of the transactions. Sometimes, a developer can recommend one for you and may offer you incentives to use them.
  • Make sure your property solicitor keeps tabs on progress and the development is proceeding on schedule.
  • Arrange your mortgage with your lender. A surveyor will be appointed to value your plot based on the plans and the development specifications.
  • Exchange contracts and pay your deposit.
  • When the property is nearing completion get a snagging survey done.

There are pros and cons to buying off-plan:


  • Buying early means you get excellent value and the value of your property could increase significantly before you even move in.
  • Developers may offer attractive discounts to customers buying off-plan.
  • You can secure your favoured plot (eg, with a south facing garden) and your chosen specifications in terms of fixtures and fittings. You may be able to get things like floor coverings included in the price of your home, so that you pay for them through your mortgage rather than having to find more cash at a time when you already have a lot of expenses to cover.                       


  • Property prices can go down as well as up.
  • Bad weather or technical problems on site could lead to your moving date being put back. Delays in finishing the building could mean you have to reapply for a mortgage.
  • Disruption due to continued construction work on the site around your new home even after you move in.

Contact our sales team for more information and advice about buying your new Larkfleet home off-plan here.