Buying or selling a house can be one of the most challenging events in a person’s life. It involves planning, preparation, negotiation and, above all, good timing. In this article, I will outline key areas that should be focused on to help homeowners make a smooth, timely sale.
In selling a property, the role of the solicitor commences once the sale is agreed on the property. However, a number of matters can be prepared before you have a purchaser, which will make the selling process more efficient and less stressful for all parties involved.
Certificates & Charges – Be Organised
A BER certificate must be obtained before the property is advertised for sale; many auctioneers will arrange this for you. It is vital that you can produce receipts for the household charge 2012, Local Property Tax from 2013 and Non-Principal Private Residence (NPPR) charge for 2009 to 2013 – if the property was not your principle residence. If the property was your main residence, you can claim an exemption, but it is essential to provide two types of correspondence, such as utility bills, revenue correspondence or bank statements from each year.
If you are selling the property with contents, you should prepare an inventory to give to the auctioneer as soon as possible so that potential purchasers will know what is included. A copy of this inventory should also be provided to your solicitor.
Finance & Documentation – Avoid Delays
If you have a mortgage on the property you are selling, your title documents will be with your lending institution. There can be delays in obtaining the title from the bank and you should contact your solicitor as soon as you have decided to sell the property in order to take up your title from the bank. If any additional documents are required, such as planning compliance or updated maps, an engineer can be engaged early in the process to avoid unnecessary delays. At this stage, a draft contract can be prepared with the final insertions made once the property is sale agreed.
Price – Be Informed
While you will determine your sale price with an auctioneer it is also advisable to check the Residential Property Price Register to compare selling prices in your area. The method of sale – private treaty or auction – will depend on the type of house you are selling, the location and the property market.
Capital Gains Tax (CGT) – Ask The Experts
If the property that you are selling is not your principal private residence you may have to pay capital gains tax (CGT) on the sales proceeds depending on how much you paid when buying the property. You are not liable for CGT when selling your main residence. However, you should engage with your accountant to ensure you make the necessary tax return.
The potential stress attached to selling a home can be minimised by following these simple steps.
Ian Sheehy is a Residential Property Partner at Keating Connolly Sellors. He has extensive experience and a reputation for providing expert property services. If you are purchasing or selling property, contact Ian Sheehy at [email protected] or call 061 432 308.
The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal or other professional advice. We advise people to always seek specific expert advice for their individual circumstances.