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Service is key when buying or selling property

Published: 27 January 2020
Time to read: 3 mins

The start of a new year often marks a period of reflection and change and frequently includes the decision to move house. It remains one of life’s more stressful events so when buying or selling your home, it’s important to seek out the best possible advice. It can be hard to know where to start, and we often speak with clients who haven’t moved house in over 20 years and therefore the terms Home Report and Missives may be unfamiliar to them.

If you’re looking to purchase, you need a handle on the property market.  This is of course sensitive to political and economic uncertainty, but the Edinburgh market continues to perform well as the city can offer a lot of different things to a range of buyers. School catchments are often high up on the priority list and Edinburgh has a lot to offer in this regard in both state and private sectors. We also regularly advise first time buyers, who have little or no experience of the process or property market. Good properties do not tend to be on the market for long and so having a Solicitor appointed who can handle the pace of the market can be vital in securing your dream home.

In Scotland we have seen an increase in situations involving chains often because parties now wish to make an offer on a property before they market their own property. These chains can lead to delays and sometimes disappointment. This is another reason why it is important to appoint a Solicitor who has your best interests at heart, understands the intricacies of your transaction and has a handle on the various timescales.

In recent times there has been an increase in the number of DIY Estate Agents in the market, and there is often a temptation to go with the cheapest option when selecting your advisor. Whilst this is understandable when it comes to everyday commodities, for most people their house is their biggest and most valuable asset. Is it really worth taking a gamble when selling your current home and buying your new one? There is real value in appointing an Estate Agent who knows the market in your area, they can recommend the best price at which to market your property to maximise interest and can help you navigate notes of interest and closing dates. DIY Estate Agents often put this burden on the seller, who can be completely out of their depth and may end up making the wrong decision under pressure.  In addition using a local ESPC agent, rather than online estate agents, is very important in the Edinburgh, Lothians and Fife market as market research clearly shows people always use the ESPC as their first stop on a property search.

It is also worth remembering that not all house sales are for happy reasons. Death and divorce are common triggers for a sale, and this is often an emotional time for the parties involved.  When property is sold as part of an Executry, thought must be given to the timing of the marketing with reference to the Sheriff Court’s grant of Confirmation. When there is a separation or divorce, both parties need to get the best advice and having an Agreement in place regarding the split of the net free proceeds of sale must be considered. These sensitivities are best dealt with by an Estate Agent and Solicitor with experience in these particular fields.

With such a big life changing event, it is important to have confidence and trust in your appointed Solicitor.

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