The Scottish Government has released advice for anybody looking to buy or sell property during the coronavirus crisis.   The key message is that the conveyancing market remains open and property sales are possible but complicated by coronavirus.

This is a fast moving, ever changing situation, so while this advice is relevant on publication date (1st April 2020), you should continue to check out for any changes.

The Government’s advice says builders and estate agents can continue to work with customers to ‘line-up sales for completion in the future’.  If you see a property you want to buy, you could still submit an offer and the seller could choose to accept.  What you cannot do is visit the property you intend to purchase because ‘property viewing’ isn’t on the list of acceptable reasons to leave your current home during the lockdown and any visit would breach the guidelines on social distancing.

With new-build property, buyers usually make decisions on property yet to be constructed.  How that affects the number of reservations on sites will become clear in the coming weeks as we receive new instructions from buyers.

For new transactions, we can take account of the Coronavirus crisis while negotiating the finer details between buyers and sellers.  For example, under normal circumstances, most people choose a move-in date ‘as soon as possible’.  This is now likely to be ‘as soon as possible after the current lockdown restrictions are lifted’.

For resale properties, Estate Agents are continuing to provide a service.  You can read how our Estate Agency partner Keys Estate Agency are operating at the moment on their website.

You might want to use this time to spruce up your property so you can hit the ground running when restrictions are lifted.  In our recent newsletter Keys Estate Agency gave some ‘top tips’ on what to consider.

The crisis has hit hardest people who were on the final lap of the conveyancing process and either ready to complete the sale, or ready to move into their home.  We’re working with all of our clients in this category to help them get through this complication and we’re tailoring our advice and service to their individual circumstances.

The coronavirus is a vicious, nasty piece of work.  We should all continue to follow the Scottish Government guidelines to help keep everybody safe.

When you move into your new home is not as important as ensuring you’re still alive and able to enjoy it for many years to come.