What Happens After Your Offer Is Accepted For A Property?
Hearing that your offer has been accepted for a property is always an exciting time but there are still some things that need to happen before the new home is yours.
Here’s a look at what you’ll need to do and what your lawyer will be doing for you to help get your purchase over the line for you.
What Your Solicitor Will Be Doing For You
In Scotland we call the contract for the purchase of a new home missives. These comprise a series of letters with various conditions which go back and forward between your lawyer and the lawyer acting for the seller.
The missives are signed by the lawyers rather than the clients and missives are deemed to be “concluded” when one side accepts the other side’s conditions in the latest letters.
Once missives are concluded the contract is binding with hefty penalties if you don’t complete. As a result, while buyer and seller tend to want missives to be concluded as quickly as possible, for your own protection your lawyer will make sure that everything is in place and that they have your mortgage papers in hand before they conclude.
Your lawyer will also request a copy of the property’s title deeds from the seller's lawyer. They’ll then report to you on the title conditions, letting you know the extent of the property and what your share of things like roof repairs will be so that you know exactly what you are buying.
If there have been any alterations to the property, your lawyer will send the associated building warrants to the surveyor who carried out the Home Report to ensure that these match up with the notes he made when surveying the property.
A ‘multisearch’ will be checked by your lawyer. In simple terms, this is a series of searches against the both the property and the parties involved in the transaction. It includes:
- A Property Enquiry Certificate which will confirm that there are no repairs due or planning permissions outstanding, and whether the property is a listed building.
- Personal searches to show that there is nothing inhibiting the seller from selling, nor the buyer from buying.
- A legal report to confirm that the seller is the legal owner of the property and whether they have a mortgage.
- An updated legal report which is issued one day before completion to confirm the position has not changed since the legal report.
A title deed (also known as a disposition) will be prepared in favour of you by your lawyer and this is what they register with the Registers of Scotland as your proof of ownership. If your buying with a mortgage, your lawyer will register the mortgage deed (or standard security) for your lender too.
Finally, your lawyer will arrange and facilitate payment of the Land & Buildings Transaction Tax (the Scottish equivalent of Stamp Duty) associated with the purchase to Revenue Scotland.
What You Will Need To Do
Assuming that you are buying your home with a mortgage, the most important thing that you will need to do is to contact your lender to ensure that they are happy with the Home Report for the property. You will also need to progress your mortgage application as, the sooner that this is processed, the less likely for there to be delay down the line.
If you are using a mortgage broker they can be worth their weight in gold here as they will help to ensure that your application is progressed quickly and minimise the chance of any errors.
You will also need to provide your lawyer with identification and information on the source of funds that you are using to buy the home. This will generally involve recent bank statements from yourself and anyone else providing funds for the purchase and your lawyer will be able to confirm exactly what they need from you.
If you’re thinking of buying a property and don’t already have a lawyer, feel free to get in touch today on 0131 667 0232 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our friendly experts will be happy to help.