Tipp FM Legal Slot – 2nd July 2013
Reforming the Conveyancing System
With the limited finance available, those with the ability to buy are rare. If you are a seller you should make sure that you are able to attract buyers and secure a successful sale.
What kind of problems have you come across when it comes to the purchase or sale of property?
We are finding that we are running into problems when buying or selling properties that could be prevented by a little bit of forward planning.
It is absolutely critical that you are ready to send out a contract for the sale of your property as soon as you agree a sale with the buyer.
As soon as you decide to sell your property it is vital that you consult with your Solicitor. We can help you in identifying any issues which may impact on the property’s potential for sale. We would also strongly advise that we meet with your selling agent at the outset to discuss any issues that they need to know about and vice versa.
What tips can you offer so that sales are not slowed down or lost unnecessarily?
There are a few things that we have come across recently that Sellers need to be aware of that could slow down or lose a sale:
Does it take time for a seller to retrieve title documents from the bank?
Where are your title documents?
If you have a mortgage the bank will hold the deeds. It takes precious time to get them from the Bank so, don’t wait; get them as soon as you decide to sell.
What happens if planning permission is an issue?
All development carried out on a property needs to be permitted.
It may be necessary to provide copies of any planning permissions and an opinion from an engineer that any works carried out complies with the planning laws or are exempt.
It is vital that any planning issues are dealt with when you decide to put the property on the market.
Planning issues can be a deal breaker especially, if the purchaser is getting a loan as non – compliance with planning permission could impact on the value of the bank’s security and result in the purchaser losing their finance.
Who is usually responsible for the roads and services surrounding properties?
Roads and Services and the Multi-Unit Development Act
It will be necessary to seek confirmation from the Local Authority as to whether the roads and services including water supply, sewers, lighting etc. abutting the property are in the charge of the Local Authority.
In newer housing estates and apartment blocks a management company may have been set up to look after and maintain the common areas. Information about the Management Company such as accounts, insurance, details of any service charge levied will have to be readily available.
Why was the Multi Unit Development Act introduced?
In most cases when a developer was selling houses in an estate it was agreed that ownership of the common areas would not be transferred to the management company until such time as the last house is sold. Given the current climate this could be never.
In 2011 the Multi Unit Development Act sought to deal with this issue and required that in the case of existing housing estates all common areas be transferred to the Management Company by 1st October 2011. There are many housing estates around the country where this has not been complied with.
This could have the potential to delay (or lose) a sale if not addressed before a contract is issued.
In summary, therefore, it is critical in the current climate, that all potential problems are identified when someone decides to put any property on the market for sale.
The early bird catches the worm; acting early will save time in the long run and help make sure that when a buyer is found the transaction can be brought to a successful conclusion as quickly as possible and without meeting any unexpected hurdles along the way.