If you live in Scotland and are considering putting your house on the market, there’s certainly a lot to think about, Covid complications aside. Though your solicitor will have plenty of information for you, we’ve compiled a list of some of the costs you can anticipate when selling a property in Scotland, so you’re prepared. A good budget will include some of the following fees:
A home report
If you’ve never sold a house before, you may be a little confused about what’s necessary. Since December 2008, home sellers in Scotland are legally required to offer potential buyers a home report – in fact failure to supply one could result in a £500 fine. It’s the property seller’s responsibility to furnish this report, and fees are typically around £300 for a property valued at £100,000, with the fee increasing by £150 for every additional £100,000, excluding VAT. So, for example, a home report for a house priced at £300,000 may cost £600.
The report contains several useful documents about the property, including a Property Questionnaire, a Single Surveyor, and an EPC or Energy Performance Certificate, which tells people about the home’s energy usage. These reports can vary in price, so it’s worth shopping around, but make sure you’re getting a RICS certified surveyor to draw up the report.
Estate agent fees
This will vary considerable depending on your property’s value as well as its exact location, but expect to pat anywhere from 1 – 3.5%. A good real estate agent will work hard to make the selling process more streamlined, so take your time finding someone who understands your market and area well. Try to get a good idea of what’s included in their service upfront, such as photographs of the property, online listings and other marketing, valuations, for sale signs, promotional write ups and correspondence with interested buyers.
Land and buildings transaction tax
LBTT (otherwise known as stamp duty) is due on properties valued above £145,000 for first homes, and £40,000 for second homes or buy-to-let properties. How much you pay depends on the overall value of the house. Use this handy calculator to get an idea of how much you would pay, or consult with your estate agent or conveyancer to get a clearer idea of what you will owe. Your estimate will depend on whether the property is residential, liable for additional dwelling supplement and whether you’re claiming first time buyer relief.
There’s plenty of legal work required when selling a house in Scotland, and you’ll need a properly qualified and licensed solicitor or conveyor to carry this out for you. Fees can range from around £800 to 1500, but again, this depends on the area, the cost of your home, and the complexity of the sale. You can also expect a few additional fees of around £300 for them to conduct local searches that determine any conflicting plans or issues that might interfere with a successful sale. Bear in mind that if you’re also buying a new home at the same time as selling your old one, your conveyancing fees will effectively be double, since there’s twice as much paperwork – don’t be caught out!
Finally, you’ll also need to make room in the budget for perhaps the most obvious costs of all: moving your furniture and belonging out of the house. This will naturally be the most variable cost, since moving companies offer varying levels of service, and costs will depend on how much you’re moving, and the distances and timescales involved. Take your time to select a trustworthy company with good reviews, although word-of-mouth recommendations are best. Get quotes from at least three companies and make sure you know exactly what is included in the price. Will they supply packaging material, and what can you expect any moving crew to do on the day? Another important consideration is insurance or compensation for damaged items, so be sure to read the fine print before you book a removal company.
Selling your home is undoubtedly a little daunting f you’ve not done it before, but there are clear guidelines for home sellers in Scotland that should make the process a little clearer. Don’t forget to build some leeway into the budget for additional expenses such as deep cleaning, or small repairs or maintenance issues that may emerge during the course of the transaction. With a little forethought and careful planning, your home sale can go through without a hitch – and without costing you too much in the process!