Residential Property Services from Morison and Smith

Buying a home is often the biggest financial investment you will ever make. It is important you have confidence in the solicitor you have chosen to deal with your transaction. Morison and Smith Solicitors manage the entire legal process on your behalf and keep you fully updated enabling you to concentrate on moving your family and belongings.

At the outset we shall explain to you the procedures and costs involved. (Please note that we do not charge for submitting offers.)

We will be happy to offer advice and help guide you throughout the buying process ensuring that your purchase completes as smoothly and quickly as possible from:

  • Noting Interest. We speak to the selling solicitor or estate agent asking that we are kept up to date with developments and that you are given an opportunity to make an offer for the property. Please be aware that noting interest does not guarantee that you will be given a chance to make an offer. The seller can decide to accept an offer that is attractive to him even after you have noted interest.
  • Surveys. We can offer advice about the different types of report, and how to interpret them.
  • Finance. Before you buy, we will speak to you so that you are aware of the basic steps you need to take to have your deposit and mortgage available in time for your date of entry. Please note, however, we do not offer advice on mortgages.
  • Offer. We issue a formal offer on your behalf. (Please note we do not charge for the preparation of offers).
  • Acceptance. The acceptance we receive is usually qualified in that many of the conditions of the formal offer issued on your behalf shall be deleted or amended by the seller's solicitor.
  • Missives. We ensure that the agreement you have reached is legally binding, and fully enforceable and understood by you. We shall provide you with copies of the contractual letters for your own peace of mind and records.
  • Alterations. are a complex area. We shall check the contents of any Home Report/mortgage valuation to find out whether the property you are purchasing has been amended, extended or altered in any way. If so, we shall guide you through the local authority rules and regulations in respect of planning and building warrants and ensure all necessary local authority permissions and consents are in place.
  • Title Investigation. We establish what the seller owns and whether his title is valid. We explain any relevant "title conditions" to you.
  • Searches and Reports. We shall check all necessary searches and reports to ensure that the property is mortgageable and to ensure that the seller can validly sell the house to you.
  • Title Deeds. We prepare the necessary title transfer document and ensure that it is delivered at settlement duly signed by the seller.
  • Mortgage. We prepare and explain the documentation you must sign to obtain your loan.
  • Accounting. At the outset you will have been provided with an estimate of your costs. At completion of a transaction we give you a thorough statement of money received and money paid out.
  • Settlement. We ensure that the price is paid in exchange for your title (and the keys released to you). We cannot guarantee a time and you should not presume to be able to move before 5pm.
  • Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (formerly Stamp Duty Land Tax). We shall complete and submit your Return to Revenue Scotland.
  • Registration. We will submit the necessary documentation to the Land Register to register title and your security (mortgage) documents and provide you with a copy of your registered title once we receive your Land Certificate from the Land Register of Scotland.

Morison and Smith Solicitors will happily assist you with the sale of your house. We are on hand to guide you throughout the selling process - from taking your instructions on any offer, concluding missives up to completion. We shall ensure that your sale completes as smoothly as possible from:

Preparing for Sale: We contact your mortgage lenders after you supply us with a note of their name and address and your mortgage account number to enable us to have your titles in preparation for the conveyancing. We review your Home Information Pack.

Alterations: We check with you that all necessary local authority consents are available, or advise you what to do if they are not to ensure the sale of your house is not delayed.

Offer: When offers are received we explain their legal effect. When an acceptable offer is received we issue a qualified acceptance i,e, we accept some of the conditions of the formal offer to purchase, delete some and qualify others.

Missives: We ensure that a binding contract is concluded and that your interests are protected. We provide you with a copy and explain the contract to you.

Title Matters: We forward everything necessary to liaise with the purchasing solicitors so that they deliver to us for your signature the transfer of title document in favour of the buyer. We will order the necessary searches and reports which shall have to be provided to the purchasing solicitors.

Title Deeds: We ensure that the title transfer document ‘the Disposition' is correct prior to being signed by you. We shall also arrange for your mortgage to be discharged/removed from the Land Registers record.

Settlement: We arrange with you the placement of the keys on the sale date so that we can receive the sale price. Never hand over keys to a buyer unless you have checked with us that we have received the sale price on your behalf

Accounting: We shall provide you with a clear statement of all monies received and paid out on your behalf including all charges made by this firm. We shall arrange payment of your estate agency bill, pay off your mortgage and pay any outstanding factors bill before remitting the balance to you.

Unsure what to do if you are in the fortunate position to have paid off your mortgage? Contact us and Morison and Smith will happily assist in the legal discharge (removal) of your security from the Land Register. We are also able to offer storage of your deeds thereafter in our storage facility free of charge.

Are you looking to remortgage your home? Rather than move home you may decide to extend or renovate your property or increase your borrowings. Morison and Smith Solicitors can assist in the transfer of your existing mortgage from your current lender to your new lender with minimum fuss and all necessary speed.

If you wish to let a property you own to a tenant Morison and Smith Solicitors can ensure a Provate Residential Tenacy Agreement is put in place to protect your interest. The Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016 came into force on 1st December 2017 and brought with it the new Private Residential Tenancy. We are able to provide information on landlord registration. It is an offence for a person to let out a house subject to a lease agreement whilst unregistered with the relevant local authority.
As a potential landlord, there are a number of significate changes of which you should be aware (please note, this list is not exhaustive):

There are no more pre-tenancy notices, such as the AT5;

  • The Scottish Government has provided a ‘model private residential tenancy agreement’, which includes a number of mandatory and discretionary tenancy terms, please see the accompanying notes for a further explanation;
  • The process and ground for regaining possession of the property have changed;
  • A landlord must provide the tenant with written tenancy terms and one of the Government-produced notes to accompany the agreement, although these may be in the form of electronic documents;
  • If you do not provide a written copy of the terms of the tenancy, a correct set of notes to accompany the terms, and a written explanation of any updated terms within 28 days of any change, the tenant may make an application to the First-tier tribunal for Scotland;
  • Any change in rent should be given at least one month’s notice, the legislation makes provision for how rent should be changed;
  • The deposit can be no more than two months’ rent;
  • A landlord cannot ask the tenant to pay other administration fees, premiums, further deposits or additional charges; and,
  • You can agree with your tenant to conduct all communications by email of you both prefer.

In addition there are a number of additional obligations placed on the tenant (again, this list is not exhaustive):

  • The tenant must give access for repairs, with 48 hours’ notice, unless in an emergency;
  • The tenant must give reasonable access for repairs, inspection, or valuation of the property; and
  • Without your prior consent, the tenant cannot sublet, take in a lodger of give their tenancy to someone else, and you must be informed is anyone else living with them.

    It should be noted, the above only applies to new tenancies. Previous tenancies such as the Short-Assured Tenancies will continue, under the same rules, if created before 1st December 2017, but any new agreements will be covered by the new legislation.

    Finally, the Scottish Government has provided a detailed guide of all the implications for a landlords, including their rights and responsibilities, a copy of same is enclosed for reference.

    We can advise you fully on any concerns you have.

Morison and Smith Solicitors have experience of pursuing actions for recovery of possession (eviction) and for payment of rent due on behalf of a range of clients, including local authorities, registered social landlords and private landlords.

Our Lawyers can advise you on the statutory pre action requirements and prepare and serve the various notices which require to be served prior to raising court proceedings, including notices of proceedings, notices to quit and notices of irritancy.

In the event that court proceedings are necessary (you will need to raise proceedings and secure a court judgement to evict someone from your property if they refuse to leave) we will take action as soon as possible after your instruction to us to proceed and we will always keep you up to date with the progress of the action.

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