Residential Property

We are experts in the field of conveyancing, the legal side of buying and selling homes. Many claim to be experts, but we can genuinely say that we are. Our Chairman, Donald Reid, is officially recognised as an expert by the Courts, and is regularly asked for his legal opinion on conveyancing disputes and negligence cases.

We aim to help our clients through all the complex stages. If clients consult with us before an offer is put in, we can guide them on what amount to offer, interpret the Home Report, and put them in touch with other professionals such as surveyors and timber specialist (if necessary) and financial advisers.

We give advice on the contract letters, also known as missives, and take full and careful instructions from clients before proceeding with the completion of the contract. We take time to explain all the jargon. The complexities of the conveyancing process can be daunting and we aim to make the process as smooth and stress free as possible.

Transactions can be completed speedily if that is what is needed – the quickest turn-around time being in the region of 4 weeks.

We use a highly efficient IT system and keep clients regularly updated.

Our fees are very competitive and we would always give you a quotation at the start.

In addition we are able to handle all kinds of property related matters such as:-

Co-Partnership Agreements, Deeds of Conditions, Residential Tenancies, Discharges of Mortgage Deeds etc…

To assist clients understanding of the contract letters for Purchases and Sales we would invite you to look at our Client Guide

Residential Property

Buying a Property in Scotland

We are experts in the field of conveyancing , the legal side of buying and selling homes. Many claim to be experts, but we can genuinely say that we are. Our Chairman, Donald Reid, is officially recognized as an expert by the Courts, and is regularly asked for his legal opinion on conveyancing disputes and negligence cases.

Moving home is considered to be one of the most stressful experiences in life. At Mitchells Roberton our experienced team of property solicitors aim to guide you through all the different stages involved.

What we can do to help you buy a property in Scotland?

  1. Noting Interest

Once you have found your ideal home you should get in touch with us right away.  This will allow us to contact the selling agents and formally “note your interest” in that property, which ensures that the selling agent will keep us fully advised of any of the developments regarding that particular sale.

  1. Home Report

No one should consider purchasing a property without a surveyor’s report. As from the 8 December 2008 most houses which are advertised for sale require a Home Report which is then made available to all potential purchasers. The onus of providing the report rests with the seller who is also responsible for the costs involved. The Home Report consists of three parts:

  • A property questionnaire which is completed by the seller and contains useful information to a purchaser such as whether there have been any alterations to the property or whether any specialist treatment work has been carried out in the past.
  • A single survey which is instructed by the seller and carried out by a Chartered Surveyor who will report on the condition of the property and provide a valuation. A prospective purchaser can rely on the terms of the Home Report and if the purchaser and the purchaser’s lender are happy with the report then there is no need for the purchaser to obtain or pay the cost of an independent report.
  • An energy report is also prepared by a Chartered Surveyor and contains information regarding the energy efficiency of the property and its impact on the environment.

At this point we can assist you in interpreting the Home Report and put you in touch with other professionals such as surveyors, timber specialists and mortgage advisors.

  1. Making on Offer

The time to make an offer will depend on whether you are the only interested party or whether the selling agent has received other notes of interest. If no one else is interested or the property is being sold at a fixed price then an offer can be put in immediately. If, however, the selling agent has a number of notes of interest then it is likely that a “closing date” for offers shall be fixed. This is a date and time by which all offers in writing will be submitted. If a closing date has been fixed then you should wait until that closing date before submitting an offer. Prior to issuing an offer our conveyancing solicitors will guide you on the amount you should be offering, the date of entry most suitable for you and any extras you would wish to be included.

  1. The Acceptance

If your offer is accepted the seller’s solicitor will issue a written acceptance containing legal qualifications. It is very unusual for an offer to be met with a totally unqualified acceptance; normally your solicitor would receive what is called a “qualified acceptance” deleting or amending some of the conditions in your original offer. Your offer, the “qualified acceptance” and any other letters dealing with the terms of the contract are called “the missives”. Once all of the terms of the contract are agreed one of the solicitors involved will issue a final acceptance letter. “The missives” are then said to be concluded and a legally binding contract will now be in place with neither the purchaser or the seller being able to pull out. It should be understood that an individual purchaser or seller does not usually sign the missive letters which are usually signed by the purchaser’s and seller’s solicitors. At Mitchells Roberton we give thorough advice on all the contract letters and take full and careful instructions from our clients before proceeding with the completion of the contract. We take the time to explain any jargon while trying very hard not to use such jargon ourselves. Our conveyancers understand that the complexities of the house buying process can be daunting and aim to make the process as smooth and stress free as possible.

  1. Title Examination

Once there is a legally binding contract, the seller’s solicitor will send the title deeds of the property to us for examination. One of our conveyancers will check the title deeds in detail to make sure the seller owns the property, that the extent of the property being sold is correct and to ensure that there are no unusual or onerous conditions. Various other documents will also be looked at, such as a Property Enquiry Certificate to confirm there are no local authority statutory repair notices or planning proposals which affect the property and a Coal Authority Report to verify the property is not in an area which has been affected by past mine workings or is likely to be affected in the future from such workings. Any Building Warrants and Certificates of Completion will be examined to make sure everything is in order. Checks are also made to ensure there are no mortgage deeds affecting the property which have not been discharged and that there are no court orders which may prevent the seller from granting to you a good and marketable title. We will send a report to you about the title deeds and detail to you any relevant information we have noted from the other documents we have examined. Our expert property team will happily answer any questions you may have.

  1. Preparing the Disposition

If the title deeds and other documents are in order we will then prepare a document to transfer the title from the seller to you. This is known as a “Disposition” and it sets out the parties, the price, the date of entry and also usually refers to an older title deed or Land Certificate which contains a full description of the property. This deed is signed by the seller.

  1. The Loan and Balance of the Purchase Price

If you are receiving a loan to enable you to purchase the property the loan is likely to come from a Building Society or Bank. The Building Society or Bank will normally also instruct us to act on their behalf in completing all the loan documentation which includes a Standard Security (the lender’s security over the property) and associated documentation. Of course our conveyancing solicitors will fully explain the meaning of these documents before you sign them. Once the Standard Security has been signed and the transaction is ready to settle we will request the mortgage monies from your lender who will send these monies directly to us. If you require to pay a balance of the purchase price we will advise you of how much this will be as early as possible and these monies along with any Land & Building Transaction Tax, registration dues of the Disposition and Standard Security and our fee will need to be paid to us in time to have cleared by the date of entry. For money laundering purposes we will require to know the source of the monies being paid to us by you.

  1. Settlement

On the date of entry you are obliged to pay the full price for the property via us and in exchange you will get your keys. The seller’s solicitor will deliver the title deeds and the signed Disposition to us. This is called “settlement”. We will then complete a Land & Building Transaction Tax application on line and send the Disposition and Standard Security to be registered in the Land Register of Scotland.

 

Selling a Property in Scotland

We are experts in the field of conveyancing , the legal side of buying and selling homes. Many claim to be experts, but we can genuinely say that we are. Our Chairman, Donald Reid, is officially recognized as an expert by the Courts, and is regularly asked for his legal opinion on conveyancing disputes and negligence cases.

Moving home is considered to be one of the most stressful experiences in life. At Mitchells Roberton our experienced team of property solicitors aim to guide you through all the different stages involved.

What we can do to help you sell a property in Scotland?  Here is our Advice

  1. Get your property ready for the market

Now that you have decided to sell you should be aware that first impressions are crucial. You want a potential purchaser to walk up the path already feeling impressed and wanting to see more. Here are a few tips.

  • Increase your property’s kerb appeal. Make sure your garden is clean and tidy, an overgrown jungle could see a purchaser running a mile. Put up hanging baskets, move bins out of the way and remove anything which is unsightly. If your gate or fence looks tired brighten it up with a lick of paint. A well maintained or newly painted front door will create impact. Make sure your doorbell works. Make sure there are no slipped roof tiles or leaky gutters. Exterior problems can put potential purchasers off if they think there is a larger underlying problem which simple maintenance and attention before putting the property on the market could rectify.
  • Spruce up. Making your house attractive does not mean an expensive decorative overhaul. The chances are that the purchaser will not like your decor in any event but you should freshen up rooms with a coat of paint in a neutral colour making them as light and airy as possible. Are your carpets and floor coverings clean? You could add a few vases of flowers or some plants around the house. Also don’t forget small details either and get round to those annoying little maintenance jobs like a long overdue light bulb change and a clean of the grouting and sealant in the bathroom.
  • De-clutter. This is a must. Purchasers need to be able to picture themselves living in the house so it is essential that each room is shown off to highlight its original purpose .If your dining room table is covered in work papers or an exercise bike is in the room then move them out and return the room to its first use. It is also important to depersonalise. Try to remove personal pictures and ornaments and clear kitchen surfaces so potential purchasers can see where they would put their own items.
  1. Choosing an Estate Agent

Selling a house is a stressful business so choosing the right estate agent who is going to minimise worry and maximise results is vital. When you want to sell your property, in almost all situations, it is advisable to use a solicitor or estate agent to act as a selling agent. It may be more expensive to have a selling agent but he/she can provide essential advice about the asking price that would attract the greatest interest and whether there are likely to be any problems, for example, unauthorized alterations or any necessary repairs. The selling agent will also take responsibility for producing the Home Report, advertising, negotiating a price for your property and if necessary showing potential buyers around. This is where we at Mitchells Roberton can help. As solicitors and members of GSPC we provide an outstanding sales service. We have an impressive track record of selling houses. Our experience, together with probably the best property advertising package available ensures your home will get maximum exposure.

If you would like a free, no obligation valuation of your home please contact Bridie Gillan on bg@mitchells-roberton .co.uk or by phoning 0141 552 3422.

  1. Obtaining a Home Report

As from the 8 December 2008 most houses or flats which are advertised for sale require a Home Report to be made available to all potential purchasers. There are some circumstances when you do not have to produce a Home Report, for example if you are going to sell your property to a private individual without putting the property on the market. The onus of providing the report rests with you and you will also be responsible for the costs involved. The Home Report consists of three parts:

  • A property questionnaire which is completed by you and contains useful information to a purchaser such as whether there have been any alterations to the property or whether any specialist treatment work has been carried out in the past.
  • A single survey which we will instruct for you and which is carried out by a Chartered Surveyor who will report on the condition of the property and provide a valuation.
  • An energy report which we will also instruct for you and is again prepared by a Chartered Surveyor and contains information regarding the energy efficiency of the property and its impact on the environment. From the 9 January 2013 when you advertise a property for sale you must include Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) information in the advert. The EPC must include details of any Green Deal plan as the purchaser will have to take over any repayments for the Green Deal loan. If you are producing a Home Report the EPC will be included in the report. If you are not required to produce a Home Report, you still must obtain an EPC from an agency accredited to Scottish Building Standards.

By instructing Mitchells Roberton as selling agents we can take care of obtaining all this necessary paperwork allowing you to concentrate on having your home ready for sale.

  1. The Offer

Your solicitor or estate agent will receive offers from the agents of prospective buyers. If an estate agent is selling your home then she/he will pass the offer on to your solicitor. A variety of offers may be made depending on whether you were asking for a “fixed price” or an “offers over” price. If two or more purchasers are interested in the property for sale then it is likely to go to a “closing date. This is when a date and time are set when all offers in writing should be submitted. On the “closing date” you can then choose which offer you want to accept. You do not need to take the highest offer. You can sell your house to whoever you wish, but it could be unlawful to treat people unfairly  by discriminating against them.  If only one person is interested in the property then a price can usually be negotiated by the purchaser’s agent and your solicitor.

  1. The Acceptance

An offer for a house contains certain basic terms  such as a price, a proposed date of entry, what moveable items are included in the sale and a large number of technical legal clauses, for example about common repairs or alterations to the property. At Mitchells Roberton we can advise you on the terms of the offer and take your full instructions on the conditions contained therein before framing an acceptance on your behalf. This normally means the preparation of a “qualified acceptance” where many of the offer clauses are deleted or amended. There is usually a period of negotiating between the solicitors acting for you and the purchaser about the terms of the offer and during this time the sale is not legally binding and either side can break the agreement.

Our property experts can also guide you on who may be the most reliable purchaser. Safer buyers include ones who have already sold and are in rented accommodation, chain free first time buyers and cash purchasers, but you might not have the luxury of this choice if you have only one offer. The sale of the property is not concluded until full agreement has been reached between your solicitor and the purchaser’s solicitor on the terms of the contract. This is achieved by a number of formal letters passing between the solicitors until one of the solicitors issues a final acceptance letter, technically known as “concluding the missives.” Once this stage is reached then neither  you  or the purchaser can breach the contract without having to pay compensation to the other party.

  1. Title Examination

Once there is a legally binding contract in place we will send the title deeds to the purchaser’s solicitor. We will order up other documents as required to fufill the terms of the contract, such as a Property Enquiry Certificate, a Coal Authority Report and a Legal Report and also send these to the purchaser’s solicitor. We will answer any questions the purchaser’s solicitor may have on the title or any of the other documents sent to him/her. We will check the deed of transfer called the “Disposition” and once it is approved we will arrange for you to sign this deed.

  1. Settlement

The sale is completed on the “date of entry” to the property when you must have left the property  and handed over all keys to your solicitor. Your solicitor must deliver the keys along with the “Disposition” to the buyer’s solicitor in return for the full purchase price being paid.

  1. Discharging the loan

If you still have an outstanding loan on the property this must now be paid off. We will deal with this on your behalf. We will receive a redemption statement from your Bank or Building Society, repay the loan from the proceeds of the sale of the property and obtain a Discharge of the Standard Security you had granted over the subjects of sale and have this registered in the Land Register of Scotland.

At Mitchells Roberton we use a highly efficient IT system and pride ourselves in keeping clients  updated at all times.

Our fees are very competitive and we always give you an estimate at the start.

Our residential property team can help you in any house sale in Scotland. We appreciate that selling  a property can be a worrying and anxious time  and we will do everything we can  to make the process as smooth, friendly and efficient as possible.

Our experts

Alison GourleyAlison Gourley
Euan DavidEuan David
Ian FegusonIan Ferguson

Purchase Transactions can be completed speedily if that is what is needed- the quickest turn-around time being in the region of 4 weeks.

At Mitchells Roberton we use a highly efficient IT system and pride ourselves in keeping clients updated at all times.

Our fees are very competitive and we always give you an estimate at the start.

Our residential property team can help you in any house purchase in Scotland. We appreciate that purchasing  a property can be a worrying and anxious time  and we will do everything we can  to make the process as smooth, friendly and efficient as possible.

Our property team at Mitchells Roberton can also advise on the sale of property in Scotland, Co-Purchase Agreements, Deeds of Condition, Residential Tenancies and Discharges of Mortgage Deed.

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