The professional advisors you’ll meet when you buy a house

March 19, 2021
Information published was correct at the time of writing


young couple talking to a mortgage broker

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or homeowner looking to remortgage, you’ll need the services of professional advisors who’ll ensure the process is followed correctly. Understanding what they do will enable you to get the best out of them.

The mortgage broker

While it’s possible to take out a mortgage on your own, the vast majority of people rely on the help and support of a mortgage advisor for what is the most significant financial commitment of their lives. Using an independent mortgage broker like Charles Cameron & Associates has many advantages.

As we have close relationships with all mortgage providers, we understand every aspect of their mortgage application process and criteria. We use this insight to match their criteria to our mortgage applicants’ circumstances and requirements, so that we can find them the most suitable mortgage for their needs.

Of course, finding the best value deal on the market is an important part of this service, but it’s also about helping the process run smoothly. Our expert teams have access to senior managers in the lenders’ mortgage teams, meaning we can often help overcome any hiccups that may happen during the application and help guide the process to completion – many times, helping a client successfully take out the mortgage they wanted when it might have otherwise been declined or fallen through without us.

The solicitor

The procedure of legally transferring the ownership of a property from one person to another is called ‘conveyancing’. To oversee it, you’ll need an experienced solicitor who will look after the exchange of contracts, the ‘drawing down’ of the loan, and the payment of Stamp Duty (if required). Your solicitor will also undertake land registry and local authority searches, although it is worth noting that you will be charged for these searches. It’s good to meet your solicitor personally (COVID restrictions permitting) and make them aware of any worries or doubts you may have. Be aware: you’ll probably have to pay the solicitor yourself, though talk to your mortgage broker for clarification on this.

The surveyor

A chartered surveyor is one of the key figures in the house-buying and remortgaging processes. If you’re buying or remortgaging a home, your mortgage lender will always instruct their own valuation survey which may involve a physical inspection or simply be managed remotely. You may or may not be charged for this survey.

In addition, when buying a new home, it’s fairly usual for people to instruct their own survey. This is so that the surveyor can examine the property for any defects, such as damp or ventilation problems. How much detail the survey covers is up to you with the scope ranging from a straightforward ‘condition only’ survey, a mid-level ‘home buyer report’ or a more comprehensive ‘full structural report’ (see below). This is where Charles Cameron & Associates can help. We’ll put you in touch with one of our recommended surveyors (which you may have to pay for) so you can be sure the property is in the condition you require, and adjust your offer if any unexpected major works need carrying out.

Before any surveyor comes to your house if you are remortgaging or selling, ensure your property is in as good condition as possible – you don’t want an easily fixable problem to cause you any delays or lower the valuation of your property.

The structural engineer

Usually, a surveyor will be able to gauge any problems relating to a new property. However, if any serious issues arise, it might be wise to employ a structural engineer, especially if you’re planning renovations. A structural engineer will carry out a detailed survey of the property and will be able to find problems such as subsidence, roof leakages or – especially if it’s an old property – sagging ceilings.

The estate agent

If you are buying or selling a property, you will almost certainly need to deal with estate agents. If you are selling, they will market your property for you, deal with viewings (if you wish) and help manage the buying/selling process by interacting with people up and down the ‘chain’. If you are buying, the vendor’s estate agent normally acts as their intermediary throughout the transaction, from negotiating and accepting the offer through to the actual handing over of the keys to your new home.

Getting the most from your professional advisors

Buying a home and even remortgaging, is a big decision. The professional advisors you employ are there to help you navigate your way through the process and at Charles Cameron & Associates, we are on hand to help with any questions you might have along the way. That includes advising you on the best way to get the most from your professional advisors – what questions to ask and what you should expect from them.

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