Changes were made in 2008 that made it a legal requirement to provide a Home Report in order to sell your property in Scotland.
Despite the fact that this legislation was introduced some time ago now, there is still a fair amount of general confusion and a lack of understanding as to what a Home Report involves and what it incudes.
The Home Report is commission by the seller of the property and the reports needs to be no more than 12 weeks old when you decide to put your property on the market.
As a result of the change in the law, it is not possible to market your property until a Home Report has been completed. This means that you will have to appoint a suitably qualified surveyor in Glasgow or wherever your property happens to be in Scotland.
Three basic components
In simplistic terms, the Home Report that you need to obtain for your property, is made up of three basic components that are designed to give potential buyers the information they need about your property before they agree to buy.
The report will contain a single survey on the condition of your property, together with an energy report that will confirm the energy efficiency performance of your home and finally, a property questionnaire, which seeks to provide answers to some common questions.
The single survey is intended to provide a potential buyer with an assessment of the condition of your home and will look at aspects such as the condition of the roof and internal as well as external walls. It will also provide an opinion on the state of your plumbing and kitchen fittings.
There will also be a valuation based on current market conditions and designed to confirm if the property is worth the money you are asking for it and there will also be an accessible audit made available of the information for anyone with special needs.
The second component deals with the energy efficiency of your property and will provide a rating that can be used to compare against similar properties to see if your home is considered to be reasonably energy-efficient or whether there are measures needed to improve the rating.
A potential buyer will want to know what the heating and running costs are likely to be if they buy your house and the energy report is designed to give them this information.
The sort of information contained in this section of the report is what council tax band you are in and whether there have been any alterations made to the property.
The questionnaire is intended to provide answers to pertinent questions that a buyer would want to know and should provide helpful guidance to your solicitor if a sale is agreed.
There are some properties that are still current exempt from being required to supply a home report, these include newly built properties being sold directly by the developer and homes that are being bought under the right to buy scheme.
The single survey and energy report within the Home Report needs to be carried out by a qualified surveyor, so make sure that you find someone suitably qualified to help you get your house on the market.
Josh Henderson is a private real estate investor who is always watching the property investing field. Also a keen blogger, he likes to post whatever he finds of interest. Look for his articles on property and investment websites.