Buyer’s guide to conveyancing


What happens once an offer has been accepted?

At Paton & Co, we always endeavour to ensure your sale runs as smoothly as possible. The guide below is designed to help you understand the process.

What is Conveyancing?

Conveyancing is the term used for the transfer of property ownership between buyer and seller. The process begins once an offer has been accepted and settles when the seller has handed over the property keys to their solicitor or estate agent on moving day. The conveyancing process is essential to ensure all legalities of sale and purchase are covered and to make certain the transfer of ownership happens with as little stress as possible.

Who does the conveyancing?

We would always recommend that the conveyancing is undertaken by a professional residential property solicitor. As a purchaser, you will need to instruct a Scottish solicitor before you are able to make a formal offer. At Paton & Co we work very closely with some of the best and most professional conveyancing solicitors in all parts of Scotland. If you could like us to help with a referral, please just ask.

Celia & Patrick listened to our concerns and delivered on their word when it came to the sale of our home, and then the purchase of our new home. They offered great advice and were in touch regularly, which removed any potential stress from the process. We would certainly recommend them – we wouldn’t use anyone else.

Rachael & Alasdair

Conveyancing Process – Buyer’s Perspective

Step 1: Informal Offer

Once you have viewed a property and deemed it to be of interest, you will either note interest or start negotiations. These negotiations tend to be around price, entry date, and any onerous clauses that might be included in a formal offer. For example, your offer might be subject to a related sale or a specialist report.

Step 2: The Formal Offer

Once an offer has been negotiated verbally, we would ask for it to be formalised by your chosen solicitor. This formal offer will include the agreed price, entry date, any additional items that are to be included, and the standard legal terms to complete the conveyancing process.

Step 3: Qualified Acceptance

Once your solicitor has sent the principal formal offer, they will receive what is known as a Qualified Acceptance from the vendor’s solicitor. The offer, qualified acceptance, and the series of letters that go between the opposing solicitors, are known as missives. Once all qualifications have been met, contracts or missives can be concluded.

Step 4: Concluding Missives

It is at this stage that you, the purchaser, are legally obliged to purchase and the vendor is legally obliged to sell. If there is considerable time between concluding missives and completion (date of entry), we might recommend to our client that a deposit is put down (normally 10% of the purchase price) as a show of good will.

Step 5: Completion Date

Completion takes place on the date of entry specified within the missives. The purchase price is paid, less the deposit (if applicable), and titles, all documentation, and keys are handed over to the vendors estate agent and/or vendors solicitor, to then be handed on to you, the purchaser. Prior to the completion date your solicitor will prepare a Statement of Completion, detailing the purchase price and outlays, including any Land and Buildings Transaction Tax  (LBTT) / Additional Dwelling Supplement (ADS), if applicable, required at completion. 

Step 6: Taking Entry and Registration

Immediately on taking entry you should check that the property is in good order; that any specified fixtures and fittings and any extras, such as carpets and curtains, which were included in the sale, are present; and that equipment, such as central heating, is fully functioning. If there are any discrepancies, you should advise your solicitor immediately. While you move into your new property, your solicitor will tie up all loose ends from a legal perspective. They will ensure the LLBT/ ADS is paid on your behalf, if applicable, and send all completed documentation to the Land Register of Scotland for registration. Whereupon registration, an updated Title Sheet will be issued, showing you the purchaser as the registered proprietor of the property that has been purchased.

For more information please call us.

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