The thought of owning your own property for the first time is exciting but it can also be daunting for many first time buyers often who do not always see the many pitfalls that they can fall into.

The first thing any first time buyer really needs to do is to work out their finances with a financial adviser who will help to calculate the amount they can borrow and how much of a deposit will be required. Thereafter, your budget can then be set and the fun bit begins you can then go and look at property.

It is fair to point out and this does not just apply to only first time buyers but to all viewers not to fall into the trap of only online shopping, many people also apply this convenient way of shopping to viewing houses and fail to go out and actually step inside houses. This can be a big mistake as you will only get a proper feel for the ambience of houses by viewing in person and you may be dismissing some very good houses.

In Scotland all property on the market must have a home report which will document to the buyers any faults or defects with the property and it assists buyers to make an informed decision when they buy. Ensure you look at this report and if necessary, send in your own specialist to give you an opinion and cost on any work that may be required.

Once you think you have found the right property contact your Solicitor to make an offer and contact your financial adviser also so as they can then process your mortgage product to ensure the funds are in place for the date of entry.

You can then organise for furniture delivery for the agreed date of entry although, don’t expect to receive the keys first thing on this date as there can be hold ups not always within your own Solicitors control. If possible, arrange to move in to the house a day or so later to make it a little less stressful.

Margaret Peebles is an experienced Property Manager with more than 20 years of experience in the property market. For more information or advice or selling your property contact Margaret on 01577 862302 or email

We are a nation of pet lovers and do allow our pets a free run in our houses and gardens which is great but when we are selling our houses we must remember that not all of us are pet lovers. Therefore, we do need to minimise the presence of pets in the property and garden. If your family pet has had a chew on your carpet or damaged the paintwork this is a good starting point, start here. Repair or replace carpeting and touch up the paintwork, it is also best to have your carpets cleaned to remove stains or pet odours, remember, you may not smell lingering pet odours as you are used to the smell but non pet owners will.

Ensure your garden is cleaned also and that no one steps in anything unexpected this would be very off putting to a buyer.

Before viewings clean thoroughly, hoover, wash floors to eradicate pet hairs, odours and paw prints, remove litter trays, food and water dishes. If at all possible, during viewings, have the pet taken out for a walk or removed to the garden. Dogs should never be allowed to bark at or jump up on viewers, some people are scared of pets and this may make the viewing uncomfortable for them. At all times, viewers full focus should be on the house and not trying to escape a sniffing pet.

Remember this disruption to your normal pet friendly life is only for a short time during the house sale period and if it will help to sell your property then it is worth the effort.


Margaret Peebles is an experienced Property Manager with more than 20 years of experience in the property market. For more information or advice or selling your property contact Margaret on 01577 862302 or email



J & G Wilson remain closed today as a result of the adverse weather conditions. Stay safe and warm everyone.


Making a Will is one of the most important things we can do – after all it determines how our most personal possessions and hard-earned savings will be shared among close family and friends.  It is often a simple and inexpensive process.  However failure to make a Will can pose major difficulties for those left behind, for instance, by paying more tax than necessary.  Your estate – money, other assets and possessions – could be distributed according to the law rather than your wishes.  It is particularly important to leave instructions if you own property.

The Contents of a Will

It is advisable to consult a solicitor before deciding what to put in your Will. A Will can cover a range of issues, including:

  • Who should inherit your property, money, other assets and possessions;
  • How your children should be cared for;
  • Who should be responsible for ensuring your wishes are carried out (the executors);
  • Special arrangements for your funeral; and
  • Charitable donations you would like to make.How a Solicitor Can HelpWills are often straightforward but some involve complicated arrangements. Even is your Will is simple and you want to write it yourself, it is advisable to consult a solicitor to avoid pitfalls and ensure all the legal formalities have been followed correctly, otherwise it may be invalid. DIY and internet Wills are available but there are obvious risks where no personal advice is given.
  • Acting as an executor: Executors are responsible for dealing with assets of the estate. Solicitors are often named as executors when a Will is drawn up. Others, such as family members, can also act as executors.
  • Going to Court: If there is no Will, it may be necessary to apply to the Sheriff Court to appoint an executor. A Solicitor will have to prepare the forms for the Court to appoint the executor, who is usually the nearest next of kin and may not be who would have been chosen had a Will be made.
  • Changing a Will: Changes can easily be made to Wills – a solicitor will ensure they are legally binding.
  • Keeping a Will safe:   It is important to keep your Will safe. If your solicitor has drawn up the Will, he or she will usually keep the original and send you a copy.For any advice in connection with making a Will please call Elaine Grounds, Law Society of Scotland Registered Paralegal (Wills & Executries) on 01577 86302

Snow again

J&G Wilson are closed today due to adverse weather conditions, stay safe and warm everyone and keep your houses heated to avoid burst pipes.