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Old 05.10.2010, 18:00
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Solicitor recommendations / buying property

Can anyone recommend me a solicitor for buying a house. house would possibly be in st.gallen if that makes any difference

ta
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  #2  
Old 05.10.2010, 21:21
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

Generally one doens not use a solictor (or lawyer) for buy (or selling) a property. The local Gemeinde notar works for both parties - and mainly the buyer...
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Old 05.10.2010, 21:44
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Recomend me a solicitor

Agree with AbFab. Get the local Notar to do it - it's his job. Ask at the Gemeinde or Stadthaus. Lisa
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Old 05.10.2010, 21:49
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

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Generally one doens not use a solictor (or lawyer) for buy (or selling) a property. The local Gemeinde notar works for both parties - and mainly the buyer...
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Agree with AbFab. Get the local Notar to do it - it's his job. Ask at the Gemeinde or Stadthaus. Lisa


Not everyone is familiar with "contract-speak". Heck, I don't mind admitting that I have to furrow my brow and stick my tongue out when going over English contracts...

The notar will expect you to know what you are signing. If you feel comfortable with this, and the possible ins and outs of buying a house in CH, then I agree with the above.

If not... get a lawyer.

I would recommend the one we used, but the firm is Basel-based. PM me if still interested.
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Old 06.10.2010, 08:20
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

We chose a local lawyer to us that was recommended by the bank. He talked us through the German contract in English and made some recommendations for changes. One thing we didn't understand in the contract was that we would be taking over the previous owner's mortgage.

The notar only saw us on completion day and it would have been a delay and inconvenience to all parties involved if we waited until then to ask to have the contract of sale amended.

I still didn't know if we split the nebenkosten/insurance between the previous sellers and us like they do in the other countries i've had places in. We were more concerned with making sure there was no capital gains tax due that we would be stung with and that the transaction fees were split between buyer and seller.

I'm not sure how good your German is, but buying property with a contract and the notar signing in a language that we were not yet fluent in was difficult for us, but getting renovations done would we next to impossible without a good understanding of Swiss German.
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Old 06.10.2010, 09:02
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

our german certainly isn't good enough for reading and understanding contracts, as Carlos R says, I have also bought and sold houses in the uk and didn't understand the contracts at all

We have checked with the town hall to see if there are any restrictions etc on the property and all has come back fine so far, so now just need to make a decision
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Old 06.10.2010, 09:38
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

I regret not using a lawyer when we bought our house. Although my German is functional, my legalese - in any language - is rather shakey. And my knowledge of Swiss property law is inadequate. When you consider the risk posed by a making a mistake in a CHF million-plus transaction, a lawyer is a sensible idea.

The Gemeindenotär is neutral. He is neither for nor against you (unless the seller or agent is his brother-in-law, jass partner, army buddy...) The Gemeindenotär will answer your questions, but he will likely not point out pitfalls. It's up to you to know what to question. Remember how fond the Swiss are of the expression 'selber schuld'.

(Now, finding a lawyer who is actually working in your corner is another matter...)

It bears repeating: it's what you don't know that you don't know that will trip you up. If you don't ask all the right questions, worded in the right way, you could be in for some big expensive surprises.

Next time, we will have a lawyer review our contracts - as sellers and as buyers.
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Old 06.10.2010, 10:29
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

The point is would you understand it in English? I wouldnt (call me dumb) but they speak a different language (like insurance companies)

We just went to the notary, he pointed out 1 or 2 things we should change( it was done in 2 seconds) then I made a BIG mistake I joked that even in English would have problems understanding so he made us go through the whole contract again, and explained every point to me in English,while my Hubby and the seller sat and through me daggers.

Have been told if we ever sell or buy again I`m not allowed to say anything, but the top and bottom, is he was very good and Im sure if there was a problem he would have told us so.
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Old 06.10.2010, 15:07
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

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our german certainly isn't good enough for reading and understanding contracts
I actually met my husband in a contract law class at uni

You need to check all the rights and rules/restricts (known as Baurechts) listed for your land registry number.

We found out later that there was restrictions on what we could do with our house. It was covered under a Bebaungsplan with some very nasty surprises for rights of way and alterations. Our neighbours tried to have this changed to build-up/out but it was voted out. We were luckily in that we have right to build-up under the current plan.

Get a town plan and look at what the land is Zoned as and what the surrounding land or anywhere that may possibly block your view is zoned as. Commercial zoning rules mean that any industry can move there and land that is zoned for 4 stories that currently has 3 can be built up another floor(happed last year near us).
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Old 06.10.2010, 15:12
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

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I actually met my husband in a contract law class at uni

You need to check all the rights and rules/restricts (known as Baurechts) listed for your land registry number.

We found out later that there was restrictions on what we could do with our house. It was covered under a Bebaungsplan with some very nasty surprises for rights of way and alterations. Our neighbours tried to have this changed to build-up/out but it was voted out. We were luckily in that we have right to build-up under the current plan.

Get a town plan and look at what the land is Zoned as and what the surrounding land or anywhere that may possibly block your view is zoned as. Commercial zoning rules mean that any industry can move there and land that is zoned for 4 stories that currently has 3 can be built up another floor(happed last year near us).

we already know it has restrictions as its on farm land, we can't change the outside at all, and need permission to do anything outside (like building a garage ) thats fine by us. Already checked all that out with the town hall before wasting anyones time later.

Oh and the view is already blocked by a blooming great mountain, do you recon they will let us rip it down ?
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Old 06.10.2010, 16:25
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

I used a solicitor when I bought my house. She went through the contract, pointing out the implication of a few clauses, making a few suggestions to eliminate possible risks and liabilities during the exchange of ownership. We put those changes to the vendor, who agreed to them.

When we went to sign the contracts, the Notar's job was clearly to make sure that we all understood what we'd agreed to - but NOT to explain the implications. That's why you need a solicitor/lawyer.
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Old 14.12.2011, 10:39
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

Hello, we are interested to buy a "fairly" old house in Zurich, it is not denkmalschutz but does have other restrictions regarding renovations which aren't clear as they concern Swiss Property laws and regulations which we are not familar with.

Hence would need to consult a lawyer, can anyone please recommend a someone they have used here in Zurich?

Cheers!
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Old 14.12.2011, 11:26
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

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Hello, we are interested to buy a "fairly" old house in Zurich, it is not denkmalschutz but does have other restrictions regarding renovations which aren't clear as they concern Swiss Property laws and regulations which we are not familar with.

Hence would need to consult a lawyer, can anyone please recommend a someone they have used here in Zurich?

Cheers!
I would consult an Architec before a lawyer, they work with these things all the time and they can point out any hidden surprises. It is a bit hit/miss but the Germainde Bauumpt (building inspector) can be quite helpful (or not!!) , the rules are quite strict BUT it is the interpretation and application of them which vary a LOT which can make your project easy or difficult. Unfortunately it does get down to personalities and relationships so a good relationship with the Bauumpt might not make it easier, they can definately make it a lot harder when trying to make changes on old houses.
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Old 14.12.2011, 11:48
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

And I'll add to RTN excellent advise: consult a local architecht, one who has 'pull' in the community. When it comes to permits, relationships are indeed important.

Good luck!
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Old 14.12.2011, 12:02
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

i reviewed the contract myself making liberal use of google translate. quite scary that some of the translations gave the opposite meaning (missing the word 'not' on occasion).

since i just about did everything you shouldn't do when buying your house, i wouldn't necessarily recommend my approach

Last edited by Phil_MCR; 14.12.2011 at 15:24.
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Old 14.12.2011, 14:09
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Re: Solicitor recommendations / buying property

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i reviewed the contract myself making liberal use of google translate. quite scary that some of the translations gave the opposite (missing the word 'not' on occasion).

since i just about did everything you shouldn't do when buying your house, i wouldn't necessarily recommend my approach
The Loans officer at our bank did the translation and contract check, found a few wobbly bits which we managed to get changed. I'm a DIY guy but I would not do it in this case.
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Old 14.12.2011, 14:50
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

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The point is would you understand it in English? I wouldnt (call me dumb) but they speak a different language (like insurance companies)
.
Then cross out the clause, if there is not a good reason for it to be in the contract it should not be there.
DONT EVER sign anything you don't understand, the Notaire has to sign that you DO UNDERSTAND what you are signing.
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Old 04.05.2020, 23:15
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Re: Recomend me a solicitor

hi Carlos,
Could you please share the contact of the lawyer in Basel?Thank you very much!
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