North Berwick is a delightful coastal town situated on the banks of the Firth of Forth within East Lothian. It was recently voted the ‘Best Place to Live in Scotland’ in The Sunday Times.
Why is North Berwick so popular? Golf has to feature highly on any list. There are two excellent courses within North Berwick with the West Links, in particular, a regular feature in best British courses lists. Further courses in the vicinity include Muirfield, Archerfield, The Renaissance and, host of the upcoming Scottish Open, Gullane 1.
The beaches are excellent, with stunning views to Craigleith, Bass Rock and Lamb, owned by Uri Gellar no less. Those with an active disposition can climb North Berwick Law and take in a stunning vista.
The local amenities are certainly another reason for North Berwick’s popularity. There is a regular train service to Edinburgh, award-winning restaurants, the Scottish Seabird Centre, excellent schooling and a wide selection of shops from independent high street outlets to Tesco and Aldi.
The property market within North Berwick has been going from strength to strength in recent years with prices steadily increasing. Family homes always sell well but demand for seafront properties in particular means that, on a price per sq/m basis, values of some properties equal those in the best parts of Edinburgh. Further proof of the popularity of North Berwick is the fact that there are currently four developments in progress from major builders such as CALA Homes and Miller Homes.
Since 1 December 2008, it has been a legal requirement for the seller of a residential property to obtain a Home Report before marketing the property (there are a small number of exceptions such as sales of new build properties and private sales.)
The Home Report is usually arranged through the selling agent or solicitor but it is perfectly acceptable for the seller to arrange it themselves. The seller is responsible for the cost of the Home Report which ranges from £360 (inc VAT) to over £1,000 depending on the value of the property. However, this cost will be somewhat negated by the fact the seller, most likely, will not have to pay for a survey for the property they will be purchasing (assuming it is in Scotland).
The Home Report includes far more information than the Mortgage Valuations which approximately 90% of purchaser relied on before Home Reports existed. The information in a Home Report is split into four sections:
The Single Survey
This forms the majority of the report. Part one of the Single Survey is basically a description of the property including the construction, the heating system, garages/outbuildings and garden ground. Part two of the Single Survey is probably the key part of the report as it provides a condition review with the various parts of the property being given a condition rating from a ‘1’, which means ‘no immediate action or repair is needed’ to a ‘3’ which means an ‘urgent repair or replacement is needed now’. A category ‘2’ covers repairs which will require future attention.
The Market Value is also included in the Single Survey.
The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
This document provides an ‘Energy Rating’ based on items such as the construction method, the heating system, insulation levels and even the number of low energy light bulbs. The EPC provides useful information about what works could be carried out to a property to make it more energy efficient.
The Property Questionnaire
The document is provided by the seller and includes useful information such as the service providers, the Council Tax banding and whether any alterations have been carried out to the property.
The Mortgage Valuation (MV)
The MV is a summary of the rest of the report which is used for lending purposes. If the purchaser of the property needs a mortgage, the lender can ask the surveyor to provide a transcription of the MV which it then uses to help it make a lending decision. Allied Surveyors Scotland is on all the major lending panels so can provide MV transcriptions to all the major lenders.
Some of the regulations surrounding Home Reports include:
1 – The Home Report must be no more than 12 weeks old when the property is first marketed.
2 – The property can be taken off the market for up to four weeks without having to arrange a new Home Report.
3 – The Home Report does not need renewing if the property is continuously marketed. If it takes longer than three months to sell the property, a Replacement Home Report may be required for lending purposes but this will only be needed at the time of sale, not every three months.
There are far more regulations surrounding Home Reports. Further information can be found at this website:
If you would like any further information or would like to arrange a Home Report, please do not hesitate to contact us at our closest office. Details as follows:
Address – 21 Church Street, Haddington, EH41 3EX
Phone – 01620 825585
Home Report Quotation
If you would like a quote for a Home Report please contact the office or click on this link: