What Documents Do I Need to Sell My House or Apartment in Ireland?
The documents / certificates needed when selling your house or apartment in Ireland are the following:
- Title Deeds
- BER Certificate & Advisory Report
- Letter from Council
- MUD Act Documentation
- Planning Documentation
- Marriage Certificate
- Proof of ID / Proof of Address
- Bank Statement
- Land Registry Compliant Map
When someone decides to sell a house or apartment in Ireland, much focus is placed on choosing the right estate agent. This is as it should be as it is a crucial decision in order to maximise the value of the property while minimising the fees payable so as to achieve the highest possible net proceeds of sale. However, in our experience, an area that is given far less attention despite being an equally vital part of the process is the conveyancing (the legal part). The conveyancing solicitor will advise you at the beginning of the process on which documents mentioned in the above list are required for your sale.
While getting a good auctioneer onboard will ensure that the sales process goes as smoothly as possible, an estate agent can only get you to “sale agreed”. In order to get to sold, you will need an expert conveyancing solicitor. As with auctioneers, there are good and bad, expensive and less-expensive solicitors and choosing the right one is crucial to ensure that the legal part of the transaction is handled expertly and for a reasonable fee. To this end, we have built the Auctioneera Conveyancing Marketplace to enable property buyers and sellers alike browse prices and reviews from conveyancing solicitors covering your area. It is vital that a solicitor is engaged at the same time as the auctioneer and not only once you move to “sale agreed”. If the first time that your solicitor learns that your property was for sale is when it moves to sale agreed, you are looking at a conveyance time of 100 days plus. By engaging a solicitor when the property is on the market, that time can be wisely used to gather all of the necessary documentation required such that it is on hand and available for the purchaser when the property does move to sale-agreed. So what documentation is required and how can you, as a vendor, ensure that you have everything ready on sale-agreed to maximise the chances of a smooth and expeditious conveyance?
The title deeds, as the name suggests, are the set of documents that confirm your ownership of the property. If you have a mortgage on your property, these will be held by your lending institution and it can take several weeks for your solicitor to receive them once they have been requested. This doesn’t pose a problem if the deeds are requested while the property is on the market. If this is delayed, as regrettably often is the case, until the property moves to sale-agreed, the conveyance is starting on the back foot and will take several months to complete. Property vendors and their solicitors must make sure that deeds are requested as soon as a decision is made to sell the property.
BER Certificate & Advisory Report
In order to list your property for sale, you will need a valid BER Certificate & Advisory Report. You can browse pricing and reviews of BER assessors covering your area at the Auctioneera BER Assessor Marketplace.
Letter from Council
The purchaser’s solicitor will need to be satisfied that the roads and services abutting the property have been taken in charge by the local council. A letter confirming the same is required. This can take weeks to arrive from the date of request so as with all documents relating to conveyancing, the sooner this is requested, the better.
MUD Act Documentation
If your property is part of a multi-unit-development, you will require the MUD Act documentation. These documents are available from the management company in charge of the development and include documents such as block insurance, next year’s budget for the development, information on the sinking fund balance as well as on the number of vendors behind on their management fee payments, for example. It can take the management company some time to send this documentation, so the sooner it is requested, the better. There is typically a fee charged by the management company which is unavoidable but in the context of the proceeds of the property’s sale value, it is an insignificant amount - typically circa €200.
LPT stands for Local Property Tax and all residential properties in Ireland are subject to this tax. The purchaser’s solicitor will need to be satisfied that the property’s LPT liabilities are paid up to date before they will advise their clients to sign the contracts. Information on how to print your LPT statement is available here.
The Non Principal Private Residence charge was a €200 per annum tax on second properties that was in place from 2009-2013. If the property was a principal residence, the charge did not apply. The purchaser’s solicitor will need to be satisfied that there is no outstanding liability and as such will require either a certificate of discharge (proof that the charge was paid) or a certificate of exemption (proof that it was never due). Further information on how to attain the necessary certificate is available at the website: www.nppr.ie
If you have made any alterations to the property, such as adding an extension or a porch or converting an attic, the purchaser’s solicitor will need to be satisfied that these works are fully planning compliant. The purchaser will further need to be satisfied that the works were carried out in line with building regulations. To this end, all documentation pertaining to the works such as planning permission, certificates of exemption from planning permission, certificates of compliance with building regulations must be provided.
If you are married or have ever been married, your solicitor will require your marriage certificate from you. This can be obtained here. If you have ever been separated, a copy separation agreement or deed of waiver or copy court order will be required.
Proof of ID / Proof of Address
Your solicitor will require these documents from all owners of the property.
Your solicitor will need your bank details but also a bank statement to confirm. The solicitor needs to make 100% certain that the proceeds of the sale are transferred into the correct bank account.
Land Registry Compliant Map
If your property is not as yet registered with the Land Registry, a first registration will be required. This requires you to arrange for a land registry compliant map to be done of your property. You can browse pricing and reviews from suitable surveyors at the Auctioneera Marketplace. You can check if your property is already registered on the Land Registry by checking here: www.landdirect.ie
Start Early & Stay on Top of Things
The issue with conveyancing is that buyers and sellers alike only realise what an incredibly inefficient, opaque, frustrating and lengthy process it is once it is far too late i.e. 3 months into the process with no end in sight. The good news is that this is avoidable or at least you can take steps to minimise the chances of finding yourself in this position. By engaging an Auctioneera Approved Solicitor as soon as you decide to sell your property and then wisely using the time the property is on the market to gather all of the necessary documentation ensures that the day the property goes sale agreed, your solicitor is issuing contracts and associated documentation to the purchaser’s solicitor. Thereafter, staying in regular contact with your solicitor to push for a closing date and generally keep the pressure on to ensure the momentum isn’t lost will maximise the chances of the sale closing without delay.