First time buyer guide
Buying your first house or flat in Scotland
Buying your first home in Scotland? Coronavirus COVID-19 has changed some aspects of the buying process in Scotland but we are here to help. Our first time buyer guide covers the complete buying process to help get you on the property ladder, as well as first time buyer mortgage advice and all the latest news and tips you’ll need to get started.
Real first time buyer stories
We spoke to James and Gail who with ESPC's help recently bought their first homes. Take a look at some of their advice for first time buyers below.
Gail's first home
James's first home
The buying process for first time buyers in Scotland
Buying a house or flat for the first time is exciting, but as with anything you do for the first time, there can be a few unknown elements along the way.
Check out our first time home buyer guide in Scotland below for the key steps to buying your first home.
1. Find a property agent
It is a legal requirement to have a solicitor agent represent you when buying a home in Scotland. They’ll be able to help you through your whole first time buyer journey, so find an ESPC agent today.
2. Get a mortgage in principle
This is a document from a bank saying how much they may lend you should you put in an official application. ESPC mortgages can help you with organising this.
3. Work out your budget
4. Find your dream home
This is the fun bit. You can search through hundreds of properties on our website that are perfect for first time buyers 72 hours before other websites. Don’t forget to sign up to My ESPC to get new property email alerts and much more.
5. View properties
Once you’ve found some properties you like the look of, you’ll want to view the property to see if it’s right for you. Due to COVID-19, the Scottish Government has advised that you view properties virtually first and only view a property in person if necessary and you have a serious interest in buying it. If virtual viewings aren’t available for the property, you should use the photographs, description in the property listing and information in the Home Report to decide if you want to view it. The Scottish Government has also advised that, while property viewings and house moves are permitted under the current restrictions, people may wish to consider postponing if possible. Find out more about viewing a property safely.
6. Make an offer
7. You've had your offer accepted
Hooray! Now it's time to formalise your mortgage and complete the legal process. The property agent you choose and mortgage adviser will be able to guide you through all the official paper work for buying your first home.
8. Start counting down to moving day
House moves are permitted under the current COVID-19 restrictions, but the Scottish Government has said people may wish to consider delaying if possible. Both parties may also need to be flexible with regards to the moving date if anyone in either party display symptoms of or tests positive for COVID-19.
Don’t worry if you have any questions, our property experts are every day to give you specialist first time buyer advice across Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife, the Borders, central and west of Scotland, and also Dumfries and Galloway.
First time buyer mortgage advice in Scotland
Finding the right mortgage when buying your first home in Scotland is a very important initial step. UK lenders have also updated some of their policies due to COVID-19 so it’s more important than ever to seek expert advice to guide you through the mortgage process.
ESPC Mortgages provide specialist first time buyer independent mortgage advice. They are the perfect partner to help you navigate through the first time buyer mortgage market in Scotland and here’s why:
- They are independent mortgage advisers - this means they aren’t linked to any one bank and work to get the best possible deal for your personal circumstances, with consideration to first time buyers initiatives, such as the First Home Fund
- They have over 80 years’ experience of helping people buy their first home between them – there’s no question they haven’t been asked before!
- They are a friendly bunch – the mortgage process can be rather jargon and process heavy, but our mortgage advisers are great at making the whole mortgage process as pain free as possible. Check out their Google reviews, they speak for themselves!
First time home buyer tips and insights
For the latest first time home buyer guides, updates on government schemes in Scotland and general first time buyer advice, head over to the ESPC news section of our website.
You can also stay up-to-date by signing up to our regular property newsletter. Through these regular emails you’ll receive loads of useful first time home buyer information and market updates.
Here’s some of the most helpful recent first time home buyer articles:
95% mortgage guarantee scheme
Wondering how the new mortgage guarantee scheme could help you purchase a house with just a 5% deposit? Find out key information in this article.
Scotland’s First Home Fund: everything you need to know
Here's everything we know about Scotland's First Home Fund, a scheme to help first time buyers by boosting their house deposit by up to £25,000.
Are 90% mortgages available now?
Wondering if you can get a mortgage with a 10% deposit? We answer this question and more in this article.
Free first time buyer advice in Edinburgh
As every first time buyer’s circumstances are different, the likelihood is you are going to have some questions along the way. We believe everyone has the right to free impartial advice on buying their first home.
So, get your list of questions together, and find out the different ways to access our free advice services:
- Sign up to one of our free virtual property events, which regularly includes a specialist first time home buyer seminar
- Give us a call – we offer a free property advice phone service – no strings attached. Call us and we can put you in touch with a property expert who can answer your questions on buying your first house or flat.
The initial consultation with an ESPC Mortgages adviser is free and without obligation. Thereafter, ESPC Mortgages charges for mortgage advice are usually £350 (£295 for first-time buyers). YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON A MORTGAGE OR OTHER LOANS SECURED AGAINST IT.
ESPC (UK) Ltd is an Appointed Representative of Lyncombe Consultants Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.