Better SmartBuyer

Your one-stop shop for your homebuying needs. Alongside supporting your mortgage application, we also help you manage the legal work of buying your home.

All in one

Save time and stress. We organise everything you need to buy your home.

Expert support

Your own dedicated SmartBuyer expert to guide you through your homebuying journey.

Complete faster

Get into your new home up to six weeks faster than industry standard*.

Cost protection

Don’t complete? Pay no legal fees should your purchase fall through.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Speak to a SmartBuyer expert

Speak to a SmartBuyer expert today to makes your homebuying experience faster, easier and more transparent.

The difference: Fee-free vs. SmartBuyer

Fee-free vs. SmartBuyer

When you use SmartBuyer, you get access to all the features of our fee-free service plus the added conveyancing and legal features.

Here's a breakdown of the differences.

SmartBuyer calculator

Use our simple calculator to receive an estimated quote based on several factors, such as:

  • Whether you’re just buying, or buying and selling

  • Property value

  • Number of mortgage applicants

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You may have to pay an early repayment charge if you remortgage.

Your home could be repossessed if you don't keep up repayments on your mortgage.

This calculator is only an estimate of how much you may be able to borrow. Talk to a mortgage broker or lender to get a more accurate figure.

Estimated Total

£0

This includes:

All your conveyancing and legal work

worth   £0

Property survey

worth   £0

Next steps

You may have to pay an early repayment charge if you remortgage.

Your home could be repossessed if you don't keep up repayments on your mortgage.

This calculator is only an estimate of how much you may be able to borrow. Talk to a mortgage broker or lender to get a more accurate figure.

SmartBuyer timeline

1. Receive your quote

Your fee is based on various factors such as whether or not you’re buying or buying and selling, property value, and number of mortgage applicants. Use our calculator to determine an estimated cost.

2. Mortgage submission

Submit your mortgage application through your Better.co.uk mortgage adviser.

3. SmartBuyer payment #1

Your first payment is a refundable deposit and initiates the SmartBuyer service. Taking payment at this stage prevents delays and allows us to match you with the right conveyancer quickly.

4. Receive your welcome pack

Your SmartBuyer welcome pack will arrive via email, and explain who your conveyancing partner is. Signing and completing the pack officially instructs the conveyancer to act on your behalf.

5. Local searches begin

Your conveyancer will commence local searches to determine if there are any potential problems or challenges in the area of the property you’re buying.

6. Mortgage approval

Once your lender has approved your mortgage, your property surveys can begin. We will match you with a surveyor.

7. Property survey

Your surveyor will conduct the necessary property survey to determine any potential problems with the property itself.

8. Finalise deposit and stamp duty payments

Your conveyancer will arrange for deposit and stamp duty payments (when applicable) to be paid.

9. SmartBuyer payment #2

Your final SmartBuyer payment will be due when you are ready to exchange contracts.

10. Exchange & completion

Once all your SmartBuyer fees, deposit, and stamp duty have been paid, your conveyancer can arrange a date for the exchange of contracts and property transaction.

Payment transparency

SmartBuyer’s fee structure is split into two payments. The first payment, paid directly to Better.co.uk, consists of the components required to complete a property purchase. These are:

Should the local searches and surveys not take place for any particular reason, you will be refunded this first payment.

The second payment, paid directly to your conveyancer upon completion, consists of legal components. These are:

  • Standard legal fees

  • Land registry fee

  • CHAPS fee

  • Completion searches

Should you not complete your property purchase, you will not be charged these legal fees.

It’s important to note that SmartBuyer does not cover your Stamp Duty payment (if applicable) or your deposit payment. You must pay these to your conveyancer in addition to the above. 

SmartBuyer also does not cover any unforeseen fees, examples of which can be found in the relevant FAQ below. 

SmartBuyer FAQs

We recommend you utilise SmartBuyer at the time your mortgage recommendation is issued. This is because, in order to successfully submit your mortgage application to a lender, you need to have your conveyancer in place. By organising this at the time of your mortgage recommendation, we can match you with the right conveyancer quickly. This will help speed up your entire mortgage journey.

Our SmartBuyer service includes the following:

  • Local search packs (required for buying a property)

  • Property survey (required for buying a property)

  • ID checks (required for buying a property)

  • Standard legal fees (required for buying and selling a property)

  • Land registry fee (required for buying a property)

  • CHAPS fee (required for buying a property)

  • Completion searches (required for buying a property)

As part of the SmartBuyer service, Better.co.uk will match you with a suitable conveyancer and surveyor to carry out the items listed. These features will be included in the standard quote you receive when using the SmartBuyer service.

The standard fee for the SmartBuyer service is calculated on a case-by-case basis and will be provided to you upfront.

No. SmartBuyer covers standard legal and survey costs only. Property transaction charges, such as Stamp Duty and deposit payments, must be paid to your conveyancer separately. 

SmartBuyer can speed up the completion of a property purchase by up to six weeks faster compared to industry standards. This is directly attributed to our partners being able to conduct legal work simultaneously and is unique within the UK property market. 

Unforeseen costs are costs that can only be determined once legal has begun. These are, but not limited to:

  • Additional title

  • Auction

  • Bankruptcy or other Land Charge entry

  • Change of name

  • Discharge of 2nd or subsequent charges

  • Discount – rearrangement of priority

  • Drafting tenancy agreement

  • Dual representation (separate solicitors acting for the lender)

  • Flying freehold

  • HMO

  • Indemnity insurance required

  • Lawyerchecker

  • Lease extension – agreed

  • Lease extension – statutory process

  • Leasehold title (to include compliance with restriction on title)

  • Merger of titles required

  • New Build

  • Postponement/rearrangement of charges

  • Restriction/entry on title (not chargeable additional to LH)

  • Solar Panel lease

  • Staircasing

  • Title split or transfer of part required

  • Trust (separate deed, as opposed to Panel in TR) is required

For explanations for each of these terms, please refer to the dedicated SmartBuyer glossary of terms.

If your property purchase, unfortunately, falls through, do not worry. You will not be liable to pay any legal fees. 

You will only be required to pay fees for works that have already begun at the beginning of this process, such as survey costs. You will also be informed of these activities in advance. 

Additionally, we will allow you to re-use property searches for another property, where applicable, should you aim to purchase again within 12 months.

Buy with confidence - we've got you covered! After you receive our confirmation email, you have 14 days to change your mind. If you decide to cancel, just email us at [email protected] as soon as possible.

If you haven't signed your welcome pack, you can get a full refund or apply your payment towards another property transaction within 12 months of notifying us.

And if you've started with the service, don't worry - we'll try our best to get you a refund for any services not yet used.

An example of an accrued, non-refundable cost is booking a surveyor and not cancelling their appointment within the agreed time.

Your solicitor may also incur some additional fees which may also be non-refundable. However,  they will keep you updated throughout the process so you are fully aware of what is happening and why.

Email [email protected] and a SmartBuyer representative will be in touch. Any refunds we send you will be done by the payment method you used for payment.

Payment upfront ensures we can begin matching you with a relevant conveyancer and surveyor quickly, and initiates the process. This means the required legal and survey work can begin in earnest, allowing you to complete your property purchase much quicker than standard. 

Yes, this service will also support any legal requirements to help you sell your property.

Yes, you will be issued an estimated quote via email once you have completed our fact-finding calculator, which takes no longer than 5 minutes to complete. You will subsequently receive the quote via email.

Better.co.uk will not be able to help you get a mortgage when a property is classed as ‘unmortgageable’. This can occur when there are major structural issues, for example.

However, there are no specific property ‘types’ Better.co.uk has restrictions for.

No, but there may be unforeseen costs accrued to the individual circumstances of your property and mortgage application. Please see the relevant FAQ above to learn more. 

The individual purchase or sale of a property contains dozens of personal and property circumstances that can influence your SmartBuyer quote.

Some examples of these include whether or not the property is a new build, whether or not you saved or were gifted your deposit, whether or not the property is a leasehold or freehold, and many more.

The standard property survey in the UK is known as a Level 2 Homebuyer Report. This is a popular choice for anyone buying a home in reasonable condition.

A level above the Homebuyer Report is a Level 3 Building Survey. This provides you with a more in-depth analysis of the property you are looking to buy. It’s generally advisable to get a Building Survey if your property is more than 50 years old, unusual in design, in poor condition, or if you have any concerns at all. 

If you want to upgrade from a Homebuyers Report to a Building Survey after your surveyor has already begun work, this will result in an additional charge. 

SmartBuyer glossary of terms

Simple explanations of key terms and phrases you will come across using the SmartBuyer service.

Mortgage insurance

Conveyancing explained

Everything you need to know about the conveyancing process.

How to apply for a mortgage

Property surveys explained

Discover all you need to know about property surveys.

Homebuying journey

SmartBuyer marketing claims

*Accelerating property completions by up to six weeks is a result of partnering with Optimus Accelerate for the Better.co.uk SmartBuyer service. Read more here.

Your home may be repossessed if you don't keep up repayments on your mortgage.

Read the SmartBuyer terms and conditions here.