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What is a Date of Entry?

Metta Stockman


In the Scottish property market, a Date of Entry is the day when the buyer pays the purchase price to the seller and, in return, receives the keys and legal ownership of the property. This date is also known as the ‘settlement date,’ ‘date of settlement,’ ‘completion date,’ or ‘date of completion.’


Why is the Date of Entry important?

The Date of Entry holds significant importance in property transactions. It sets the deadline for the seller to move out and often aligns with the buyer’s move-in date. Both parties typically negotiate this date to ensure a smooth transition.


Preparing for the Date of Entry

It’s essential to have your funding ready well in advance of the Date of Entry.

Your solicitor will calculate the balance required for settlement, including any Land and Buildings Transaction Tax and fees. You must transfer the necessary funds to your solicitor, who will also coordinate with your mortgage lender to ensure the funds are available on time.


Pre-settlement considerations

Even if missives are concluded, you can’t collect the keys until the Date of Entry. Here are some key points to consider:

  • If you’re part of a property chain, settle the sale of your current property first if you’re using those proceeds to buy your new home.
  • Bank transfers are not instantaneous and may incur charges. Make sure your solicitor is aware of this.
  • Inform your solicitor if you plan to port your mortgage to your new home, as they need to verify details before the Date of Entry.
  • If your mortgage payment is near the Date of Entry, allow the payment to be taken. This will be refunded. If the payment isn’t due for over a week, consult your solicitor about cancelling the direct debit.


What to watch for

Ensure the property is in good condition before finalising the purchase. If you notice any issues, inform your solicitor immediately. You have five working days to report discrepancies to the seller.


Title deeds

Your solicitor will send you the title deeds once available from Registers of Scotland, now referred to as the Title Sheet. Since it’s electronic, keep the email and title sheet safe for when you decide to sell the property.


Key takeaways

  • The Date of Entry is when the buyer pays and receives property ownership.
  • It’s important to have funds ready well in advance.
  • Check the property’s condition before finalising the purchase.
  • The title deeds will be sent electronically by your solicitor.

For more information and assistance, reach out to a TSPC solicitor estate agent for expert advice.