Steps Selling Property

1. Appointing a Solicitor

This is the one of the first things to do when selling a house. If you have a mortgage, your solicitor must take up your title deeds from the financial institution. Title deeds will be released on trust by the bank until the sale goes through and the mortgage redeemed. If you don't have a mortgage give all your title deed to your solicitor at the first opportunity. Once the solicitor has the title deeds he/she will investigate the title and see if they need to apply for any documents in order to complete the sale.

2. Finding a Buyer

Most people selling a home appoint an estate agent or auctioneer. They usually look after advertising in papers or online and will be responsible for putting up “for sale” signs. They normally deal directly with prospective buyers. To find a buyer, you need to agree the proposed sale price. Once a sale is agreed, the buyer pays a deposit. The amount of deposit can vary but it’s often between €5,000 and €10,000. The property is now considered as “sale agreed”. At this stage buyer or seller still have time to reconsider. The house doesn’t change to “sold” until all aspects of the sale go through.

3. Contracts – Step By Step

  •  Issuing Contracts

Your estate agent or auctioneer will send a “sales letter” to your solicitor outlining the parties (seller and buyer) and the terms of the sales agreement.

Your solicitor will prepare the contracts. Issues such as the closing date, the contents, and any issues surrounding planning or the boundaries will be dealt with in the contracts.

  • Pre-Contract Queries

Any queries about the sale will be dealt with by Howell & Co. We are experts in all areas of conveyancing and will look after all the details for you.

  • Signing Contracts

When the Purchaser's Solicitor is happy with the Contracts and title, they arrange for the purchasers to sign the Contracts. The contracts are then returned to your solicitor.

Generally a “contract deposit”, separate and distinct from the booking deposit paid to the auctioneer is payable. This is generally about 10% of the sale price less the booking deposit.

You sign the Contracts in your Solicitor's Office, and one copy is sent back to the purchaser's solicitor for their records. This is the stage at which you become legally bound to sell the house.

Once the contracts are returned to your solicitor, the purchaser is bound to purchase and the deposits are non-refundable.

4. Requisitions on Title
The buyer’s Solicitor raises any questions on the title. This is known as “requisitions on title”. They then draft the Purchase Deed. Both of these documents are sent to your Solicitor who answers the requisitions and who approves the draft deed.

5. Closing a Sale
You attend your Solicitor’s office to sign the Transfer deed and other documentation such as a family home declaration, section 72 declaration, or sometimes a declaration that you did not build any structures outside of planning permission. 

Your solicitor may need to confirm if the road adjacent to your house is a public road, or if the house is in a housing estate, that the local authority have taken it in charge and look after the roads and services. A letter from the Local Authority may be required (€88.00). 

You may also need to produce receipts showing that no arrears for refuse collection are outstanding. You may also need to show that you have registered the property with Irish Water and there are no charges outstanding. Proof of payment of household charge and LPT (Local Property Tax) will also be required.

If the house is not your principal private residence proof of payment of NPPR (Non Principal Private Residence charge), will be required for the years the charge was in force.

6. Handing over the Keys

Your Solicitor agrees a closing date with the purchaser’s solicitors. On this day you will hand over title deeds and keys in exchange the balance of the sale price not already paid.

7. Redemption of Mortgage
If you have a Mortgage then the Solicitor is obliged to pay it off from the sale proceeds and the balance of the sale proceeds is transferred to your account after your solicitor has deducted the agreed fees and outlay. 

If you have any queries about selling a house, the conveyancing team at Howell & Co. Solicitors will be happy to guide you through our service and fees.