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What is conveyancing?

Conveyancing, the legal process of transferring property ownership in Scotland, involves several crucial stages, each carrying its own legal intricacies. This comprehensive guide will illuminate the key points of conveyancing, from the conclusion of missives to settlement, and shed light on critical aspects such as the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT), registration, and the importance of the Home Report.

Understanding these elements is essential for anyone involved in property transactions in Scotland. If you are looking at buying or selling property or would like to know more, contact our team today.

1. Conclusion of Missives: A Binding Contract

The first stage of conveyancing involves the conclusion of missives – the contractual agreement between the buyer and seller. This marks the point at which all terms and conditions of the sale are agreed upon, and the contract becomes legally binding upon the signatures of both parties. This meticulous process sets the foundation for a smooth property transfer.

2. Settlement: Transferring Ownership

Settlement is the pivotal moment when ownership officially changes hands. The buyer pays the agreed-upon price, and the seller hands over the keys along with the disposition – the legal document that formally transfers ownership. This stage ensures a seamless transition from seller to buyer, with both parties fulfilling their contractual obligations.

3. Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT): Financial Considerations

The purchase of a property may incur the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT). The amount payable depends on the property's price, and understanding these financial implications is crucial for both buyers and sellers. This tax contributes to the overall cost of the property transaction.

4. Registration: Securing Ownership

Following settlement, the buyer's solicitor undertakes the crucial task of registering the disposition with the Registers of Scotland. This step updates the Land Register, providing a transparent public record of the buyer's rightful ownership. Proper registration is vital to validate the property transaction legally.

5. Home Report: A Seller's Obligation

Sellers in Scotland are obligated to provide a Home Report to potential buyers. This comprehensive report includes a survey, an energy report, and a property questionnaire. The Home Report aims to provide buyers with essential information about the property's condition, energy efficiency, and other pertinent details, facilitating an informed decision-making process.

6. Conveyancing Solicitors: The Legal Guardians

In Scotland, only solicitors are authorised to carry out conveyancing. These legal professionals play a pivotal role in ensuring that buyers acquire a good title to the property and that all legal aspects of the transaction are handled with precision. Engaging a qualified conveyancing solicitor is crucial for a successful and legally sound property transfer.


While this guide offers a simplified overview, it is important to note that conveyancing can involve complexities beyond these key points. Navigating the intricate landscape of property transactions in Scotland demands a meticulous approach, and understanding these fundamental aspects is a crucial step toward a successful conveyancing process. 

Solicitors Clarkston, Newton Mearns, Giffnock, Netherlee & Southside Glasgow

At Claphams, client care is at the heart of what we do. Our dedicated solicitors recognise the stress that legal matters can bring, and our mission is to alleviate that burden while keeping costs reasonable. Backed by a warm and friendly team, our commitment is to provide you with the support and guidance you need.

Contact us today, online or via 0141 620 0800.



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