What Is A Memorandum of Sale? Do You Need One?

Someone signing a document

Introduction to the Memorandum of Sale in UK Property Transactions

Essentially, the Memorandum of Sale is a short, quantitative sale summary. It is sometimes called a ‘Sales Memo’ or ‘Exchange of Contracts’.

The document contains a summary of the terms and conditions of the sale, such as the final selling price and the date by which completion should take place. It also contains the names and contact details of both the buyer and seller and a description of the property being sold.

Some other details mentioned in the document are:

  • Required (and agreed) deposit price
  • Mention if it’s a case of cash buyer vs mortgage buyer
  • List of fixtures, furniture, and fittings included in the sale price
  • Special conditions like repair work or refurbishment

Your estate agent issues the Memorandum of Sale. Your solicitor will provide all your details to the estate agent who will draw the contract. Since the document is highly confidential, there’s a high chance you won’t get to see it.

Understanding the Purpose of a Memorandum of Sale

Once the document is issued, the estate agent removes the property from the market and changes the status to “Sold SSTC”. They have to (no questions).

From this point onward, you’ll survey the property and look into the finer details like transfer of title deed, mortgage application and other paperwork.

When is a Memorandum of Sale Required in UK Property Transactions?

The Memorandum of Sale is a crucial part of the process. It kickstarts the transition and gives both parties security in terms of their rights and entitlements.

The document is issued by the estate agent when:

  • Both the parties (buyer and seller) accept the offer and agree to the terms and conditions
  • The buyer provides the estate agent with their proof of funds and deposit
  • The solicitor is ready to take on the case and give all details about the property

The Benefits of Having a Memorandum of Sale in Place

Proof of Ownership

Clarity and Transparency

Provide Closure

Legal protection


Having a Memorandum of Sale in place shows that the buyer and seller take the transaction seriously. It can also help build trust between the parties.

Faster Sale

Common Misconceptions About Memorandum of Sale and the Reality



On the other hand, a sales contract is a legally binding agreement that outlines the specific terms and conditions of the sale.





While a Memorandum of Sale is commonly used in real estate transactions, there is no limitation. It is also helpful in recording the terms of a sale of personal property, such as a car or equipment.


A Memorandum of Sale is a binding legal document.


A Memorandum of Sale is not a binding legal document. It is simply a record of the terms of the sale. However, if the parties to the sale intended for the Memorandum of Sale to be binding, they can include a clause stating that it is a legally binding agreement. In this case, the Memorandum of Sale would be enforceable in a court of law.

A Final Word on Memorandum of Sale

Selling or buying property in the UK is a dream come true. The country is full of beautiful places to visit, great people to meet and stunning properties you can call home. But it also comes with its fair share of risks. 

So, research your options before committing to any agreement. Working with trusted companies will save you a lot of hassle (and money)! 

If you want to know more, we at Zoom Property Buyer are here to help. Reach out anytime!


Picture of Bobby Turner

Bobby Turner

Market research, writer & property specilaist for Zoom Property Buyer. Over 10 years in property sector. Previously at WhatHouse?