We have listed below a check list of things to do when you have
decided to buy a house. Please take time to read through it
carefully to prepare you for what will happen. It could save you
time and hopefully make the process a little less stressful.
- Contact a Bank to establish how much money you can borrow.
Whilst arranging the appoinment ask what sort of documents you will
need to bring with you - wage slips, bank statements, passport
- A 10% deposit is usually required unless otherwise agreed with
the seller ("the Vendor"). Please let us know ASAP if you don't
have 10% so we can advise the Vendor.
- Contact your Bank and arrange for an appointment to see a
Mortgage Adviser, who will explain what types of mortgages they
have to offer you. Please see our section on FINANCE. The type of
survey report will be discussed. The three types are a simple
Valuation Report, Home Buyers Report and Structural Report (full
survey). Please see our section on SURVEYS.
- A Structural Report is not normally requested unless your
property to be is very old and/or there is good reason to believe
there are major structural defects. The Bank (in most
circumstances) will contact the Surveyor and arrange the survey.
Remember that once you have signed Conditions of Sale you must
accept the property as it is, therefore it is vitally important to
know if there are any problems with the condition of the Property
now. Life policies, house insurance and any other matters will be
discussed with your Mortgage Adviser.
- There are going to be a lot of forms to fill out and meetings
to be had during the buying process so it might be best to inform
your employer so cover etc. can be arranged.
What your Advocate will do
- While you are sorting out the above, they will have started
work. Normally two working weeks to deal with all matters are given
to you and your Advocate (this is known as the "operative date")
when hopefully you will be in a position to proceed and sign
Conditions of Sale (if not signed already).
- Don't sign anything unless they have seen or spoken to
- We would have already provided them with draft Conditions of
Sale, title deeds from the Vendor, and any additional information
about the Property or the Vendor when your offer was accepted.
- A file will be opened and a Clerk and Advocate appointed. They
will contact you by phone or post and introduce themselves and find
out a little more about you and what position you are regarding
your finance/survey. This is the time when any questions you may
have should be asked, no matter how silly they may seem. They are
here to help you through the whole process so don't be afraid to
ask. Keep them updated of all the circumstances relevant to your
purchase i.e when you have received your survey signed your
mortgage offer letter etc
- Your Clerk will carry out the necessary searches, which
primarily include the Cadastre and Greffe records.
- These searches are carried out to establish whether the Vendor
owns the whole of the property, the boundaries are correct and that
the Property benefits from or is subject to certain rights eg.
drainage, rights of access to maintain walls, rights of way
- Once this has been completed he/she will visit the property and
check that the boundaries are as stated in the title deeds, the
possible location of the drains and services and ensure that the
rights researched (if any) are sufficient.
- They will then collate all the information they have researched
and prepare the file for a meeting with you.. When you meet they
will explain the boundaries and the rights (if any) to ensure that
you understand the deeds of the Property. Planning details of the
property will be discussed (please see our section on IMMUNITY
- During this meeting, the manner in which you will own the
property known as "Vesting" (if there is more than one of you
[please see our section on CO-OWNERSHIP]), wills and any other
relevant details will be discussed.
- You will also be informed of the costs involved if you haven't
been already (please see our section on COSTS).
- Once all of the above has been completed and is satisfactory,
Conditions of Sale can be signed by you and the Vendor and you can
pay the deposit (if not already). If conditional Conditions of Sale
have been signed and all is satisfactory, no further action is
required by you to create the binding contract.
- Documents including a draft Conveyance, which will be
re-printed on special lined paper for presentation in Court, a
statement of account showing the exact amount required to complete
your purchase (and sale if applicable) and a letter giving meeting
instructions will be drafted by your Clerk and sent to you for your
information. In addition, you may also receive draft wills and any
other agreements applicable to you.
- On completion day you will meet at your Advocates' office
before Court where all documents and Conveyancing Court procedures
will be explained to you. It sounds unnerving but in reality it is
nothing to worry about. You go to court at 9.30am (after going
through a security procedure) and usually, depending on how busy it
is, leave by 9.50am holding a set of keys to the door of your new
- Should you have any queries at any time during this process,
please never hesitate to contact your Clerk/Advocate.