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30 August 2019 News
The ESPC have just published their House Price Report for July 2019 and the key points of interest are as undernoted:-   •    In Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Borders, the average selling price from May 2019 until July 2019 was £256,730, an increase of 4.1% from the previous year. In East Lothian the average selling price (£248,729) increased by 6.7% year-on-year, and in Midlothian the average selling price rose by 4.7% •    During the last three months, the total sales volume in these areas rose by 8.2% year on year. This is due to the rising volume of properties coming to the market at…
23 August 2019 News
Generally, we are an extremely charitable bunch.  Over the last year, it is understood that the British public gave nearly £10 billion to their favourite charities with a significant part of those donations being legacies left in a Will.  Leaving money to charity has never been more popular, with the majority of us gifting to charity each year whether through regular monthly contributions, one off contributions or leaving legacies on our death.  Last year almost £3 billion of donations were made through “legacy income” making it the largest single source of income to the charitable sector and vital to the ongoing success of many individual charities…
16 August 2019 News
To understand whether Land and Building Transaction Tax is payable on a purchase of a derelict building, one first needs to understand the definition of “residential property”.  This is described in the Land and Building Transaction Tax (Scotland) Act 2013 as:- a.    A building that is used, or suitable for use, as a dwelling, or is in the process of being        constructed, or adapted, for such use. b.    Land that is, or forms part of, the garden grounds of a residential building and c.    An interest in, or right over, land that subsists for the benefit of a residential building. Residential property transactions, generally speaking…
09 August 2019 News
In your Will, you can appoint one or more people to act as executor to your estate following your death. This is one of the most important choices that you will make as your executors are the people who will ensure that your wishes are fulfilled in relation to the distribution of your estate.  Choosing someone that you trust to carry out this role is crucial, and this can be a family member or a friend, but it can also be useful to have someone independent act as executor especially if your assets are more complex and include business interests. In this case you can ask…
02 August 2019 News
Care Fees When the decision is made to move into residential care, you may be expected to contribute towards the cost, both from your income such as your state pension and from your capital.  Before you can receive any financial assistance from your relevant Local Authority, that Local Authority will need to carry out a care needs assessment and establish whether you qualify for the non-means-tested free personal and nursing care payment.  They will also carry out a means tested financial assessment to work out how much financial help you qualify for and how much you should pay towards your Care Home fees. If your capital…
26 July 2019 News
Located in a modern well-established residential estate, 55 Muirfield Road is a striking 6 bedroom detached villa which is complemented by a large west facing garden with decking. Worth a special mention is the stunning kitchen/dining room which has been fitted with contemporary units with solid oak worktops and Rangemaster cooker. The property also boasts a conservatory with doors to the rear garden. If you are looking to relocate to East Lothian and are wishing to find a home with accommodation for an elderly relative, student or if you are considering setting up an Air B'n'B , this property would be ideal as there is a…
19 July 2019 News
We are fortunate to have a strong relationship with Square Foot Media, who have been at the forefront of property marketing for the past decade.  They are the experts when it comes to showcasing homes and are based in Edinburgh.  They have a dynamic team of photographers, some of whom are East Lothian based and are led by Robert Jenkins, the managing Director. The high quality of their photography is evident from their website: Meet Kath Thomson, Operations Manager, who is at the forefront of this exceptional company. •    Describe yourself in 3 words?       Happy, self-assured and organised •    What made you pursue…
05 July 2019 News
Our current selection of exclusive houses in three of East Lothian’s beautiful towns and villages each offer something a little different for buyers. Abbots Glen, Abbots Croft, North Berwick, EH39 5NG This impressive, detached house sits in a fantastic and prominent position in the coastal town of North Berwick with beautiful garden grounds and stunning views to the Firth of Forth, Craigleith and the Glen Golf Course.  A short walk takes you to the east beach through the scenic and tranquil woodland area, The Glen. Tucked away in a small exclusive and established development accessed from a private lane this offers a secluded spot in the…
28 June 2019 News
Giving away some of your assets to the next generation before your death can be an effective means of minimising your Inheritance Tax liability.  It is however important that the gift is absolute and you do not retain any form of benefit from the assets gifted away. It is relatively common for an individual to consider gifting their principal dwellinghouse during their lifetime and continuing to live in it after the gift is made. As they have retained the benefit of living in the property, this gift is considered by HM Revenue & Customs to be a Gift with Reservation of Benefit and the value of…
21 June 2019 News
According to Alzheimer Scotland, an estimated 90,000 people currently live with dementia in Scotland. Around 3,200 of these individuals are under the age of 65. By 2026, this number is expected to increase to approximately 164,000. As such, it is important to understand what happens when an adult has lost the ability to make their own decisions, without having first made a Power of Attorney appointing a specified person to act in such a circumstance. Where there is no Power of Attorney in place, and an incapacitated individual is over the age of 16 years old, a Guardianship Order must be sought from the Sheriff Court…

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