Buying a new home is commonly regarded as one of the most stressful experiences of our adult lives and with the introduction of new government schemes such as ‘help to buy’, the process appears to be only getting more complex and confusing, however that does not mean that it has to be in practice! At Morgans, whether you are a first time buyer, a homeowner looking to upgrade, downsize or a landlord with an extensive property portfolio we can guide and assist you through the process.
Here is a step by step guide to buying a new property:
FINANCING YOUR PURCHASE
A lucky few do have the sufficient funds, without a loan to fund their purchase, however for most of us the value of our deposit and loan will dictate which properties we can afford. Loans (standard securities, also known as mortgages) are available from a range of financial institutions and different lenders offer different terms according to your personal circumstances. Ensuring that you are actually eligible for a loan first and then shopping around is essential. At Morgans our own mortgage broker Wayne Westbrook, can advise you on what is available and may be the best loan for you.
* Morgans are happy to accept introductory commissions from insurance companies or procuration fees from lending institutions. We charge a fee of £250 plus we will also receive a procuration fee of approximately 0.35% from the product provider. However if clients wish to operate on a fee only basis we are happy to do so and our fees are normally £450.00.
**Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
FINDING YOUR NEW HOME
Once you have a price range in mind you can now also consider other needs such as where is your preferred location? How many bedrooms do you need? Do you want to take on a project or would you like a property that is ready to move into? Searching for your ideal home is now easier than ever – by consulting local press and estate agents, including our own highly experienced property team you can gain an inside knowledge on what kind of properties are available. Other resources such as the ESPC (The No. 1 database for properties in Edinburgh, Lothians and Fife), Zoopla, RightMove, S1 Homes and of course our own website should also be explored.
APPOINT A SOLICITOR
You have explored your loan options and have found a property you like – it is now time to appoint a solicitor to act for you. Upon appointing a solicitor you will receive their terms of business, notice of any conflict of interest and an estimate of their fees. You may be selling or have found a property through our Estate Agency team, so it only makes good sense to instruct one of our solicitors to act for you!
The first step after finding a property which you like is to ask your solicitor to note your interest. This is not an offer but simply a notice to the sellers that you are interested and so may lodge an offer in the future. At this point you can and should request a copy of the Home Report. The Home Report provides various details about the property such as its condition and history, whether any repairs are necessary, and how efficient it is in terms of energy costs. This report may be the deciding factor on whether or not you progress to making an offer.
An offer and all correspondence which follows constitutes the contract for your purchase. These letters are known as the missives.
If you decide to make an offer, your solicitor will consult with you on the terms upon which your offer is based, for example the price, the inclusion of any moveables or the offer being subject to the sale of your own home.
The sellers will return with one of the following; a straightforward refusal, acceptance or most likely qualified acceptance which includes their own terms of sale. Your solicitor will go through these terms with you. You should note that until missives are concluded there is no binding contract.
Your solicitor will correspond with the sellers, in accordance with your instructions until terms agreeable to both parties are reached and your missives are concluded. A binding contract is then in place
CONFIRMED OFFER OF LOAN
While missives are being negotiated you should be in contact with your lender finalising your loan application. Missives should not be concluded until your loan offer has been confirmed.
YOUR SOLICITOR’S EXPERTISE – Examining title deeds and drafting
While missives are being negotiated, your solicitor will undertake the necessary legal work, known as conveyancing. It is your solicitor’s job to ensure that you acquire free ownership and ‘good title’ to the property. Your solicitor will examine and report to your on the current owner’s title deeds, examining boundaries and the description of the property. Any conditions of ownership will also be brought to your attention. Common conditions include parking restrictions, maintenance of common areas and an obligation to insure the subjects. You should consult your solicitor if you have any queries at this stage.
Your solicitor will also draft the document which transfers ownership (disposition) and loan papers.
The only documents which you will sign will be a HMRC mandate, allowing your solicitor to complete a stamp duty form on your behalf and your new standard security. The sellers will sign and deliver the disposition at settlement.
Your final responsibility will be ensuring that you have transferred any additional funds to your solicitor prior to the date of entry. Your solicitor will request the funds from your lender prior to settlement on your behalf and will then pay the total sum to the sellers – upon receipt of which on the date of entry, you will acquire ownership to your new home. All of the documents, including the disposition, will be delivered to and taken care of by your solicitor. All you have to do now is collect your keys and get moving!
Although we hope you will be happy in your new home you should note that you have 5 working days after settlement to inspect the property and report any problems, such as a broken central heating system to your solicitor. They can then make a claim for repairs on your behalf but remember there is a time limit! Make time to make sure your property is as you expected.
For further information about the conveyancing services we offer at Morgans please call us on 01383 620222, or alternatively complete the short form below and a member of our team will get back to you as soon as possible…