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10 steps to buying your first home

You’ve never bought a home before and you’re wondering where to start? Start right here:

  1. Work out what you can afford. Mortgage lenders use several factors to judge affordability, including your income, outgoings and other borrowing.
  2. Get a copy of your credit score from Experian (£2), Equifax (£2) or Noddle (free), so you can be aware in advance of any problems and can deal with them.
  3. Know your estate agent jargon – is it fixed price, offers over, offers in the region of? Don’t be disappointed to find the seller wants far more than the advertised price.
  4. Use property websites such as zoopla.co.uk to research recent sale prices, so you have a better idea of how much to offer.
  5. Get a mortgage agreement in principle via your mortgage adviser or directly from your chosen lender. Then you’ll know exactly how much you can afford to offer.
  6. You’re entitled to receive a Home Report which gives a valuation and a general indication of condition, but you’ll need to decide whether you want a more detailed survey done.
  7. Offers must be made through a solicitor. Find one through your local property solicitors’ network such as SPC Scotland, or Your Mortgage Expert can put you in touch with one.
  8. Instruct your solicitor to make an offer.
  9. If your offer is accepted both sets of solicitors will work on concluding missives.
  10. When your funds are received by the seller’s solicitor, the sale is complete, you can receive the keys, move in and enjoy your new home!

For more detail on the home-buying process in Scotland, read our blog post Buying a home in Scotland – where to start.

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